Photo: Jill_Ion, 2018. Creative Commons license 2.0

As part of its ongoing mission to unfuck the many things the previous administration completely fucked up in America and also the world, the Biden administration is examining thousands of deportations to determine whether people should be allowed back into the USA. In a report co-published with the justice reform group The Marshall Project, Politico says the administration,

with little public fanfare, is working on plans for an organized review of thousands of cases of people who say they were unjustly deported in recent years, senior officials in charge of immigration said.

The officials say that many deportations, especially under Trump, were unduly harsh, with little law enforcement benefit. They are working to devise a system to reconsider cases of immigrants who were removed despite strong ties to the United States.

The top priority, the article says, is to review deportations of military family members or of veterans, young people who were deported because they were left out of DACA, and people who say they were deported for political reasons, like after they demonstrated against the Trump administration's immigration policies.

God damn, we sure did our best to turn into a dictatorship, didn't we?


Marsha Espinosa, a spokesperson for the Department of Homeland Security, confirmed that DHS is working on

"a rigorous, systematic approach" to conduct the reviews and "an orderly process" for deported people to present their claims.

Eventually, the reviews may also expand to cover deported immigrants who have close family members who are US citizens and who

can show their families were severely harmed by the deportation of a parent or breadwinner.

The reviews will proceed on a painstaking case-by case basis, officials said. At least initially, only a very small fraction — perhaps thousands — of more than 900,000 formal deportations under Trump could be reversed. But eventually, if the review system is effective, many more people could apply.

The article focuses on one such family, Joe Rochester, a US citizen, and his wife Cecilia González Carmona, who had been in the US for almost 20 years without documentation. Rochester was one of those dopes who voted for Trump in 2016 because Law And Order, but who "never imagined that his wife, a stay-at-home mother with no criminal record, would be treated as one of the bad immigrants Trump vowed to remove."

But once the Trump administration made clear that very bad hombres applied to anyone without papers, even if they seem like a loving mom with a US citizen kid, the family started getting nervous — and not even because González Carmona might suddenly turn into a brutal machete-wielding murderer due to her immigration status, as people do.

Based on poor advice from a lawyer, Rochester said, she decided to stay ahead of the authorities by agreeing to leave for Mexico on her own, believing she would have a quick turnaround back to the United States.

Not long after she left, a new lawyer they hired to handle González Carmona's return discovered an old record of a formal deportation she was unaware of, when she had been caught and expelled at the border 18 years earlier[.]

That meant she wouldn't be eligible to even apply to return to the US for another 10 years. Then, six months after she left the US, their son Aston, then five, was diagnosed with cancer, which led to surgery to remove one kidney, followed by 10 months of chemo.

Would immigration officials let a mom come back to be with her little boy who had cancer? Maybe back when America was soft, but not under that champion of law and order Donald J. Trump.

She asked the Trump administration for an emergency permission, known as a humanitarian parole, to return to care for Ashton. On Aug. 31, 2018, an immigration official informed her in writing that there were no "urgent humanitarian reasons or significant public benefit" to grant her request.

Maybe the family should have found a way to buy a $500,000 condo from the Kushner family if they wanted to be of benefit to the USA and get an entry visa.

Fortunately, Ashton, who's now eight, is doing OK, but the family is still trying to find a way for González Carmona to return; they're hoping they can apply again for humanitarian parole.

Politico explains that federal officials "have broad powers to grant those paroles, which allow foreigners into the country for a short time, without providing any immigration status." That's the method it's been using to readmit some families whose children were taken from them under Trump's "zero tolerance" policy, and it's likely to be used to expand the unfuckening of other parts of Trump's war on migrants.

To date the administration's highest priority have been military families and veterans, after Biden made promises to help them during his campaign last year. Espinosa, the Homeland Security spokeswoman, said her agency is also working to create easier pathways to naturalization — the process to gain U.S. citizenship — for those families. While estimates are inexact, officials say at least 11,800 active-duty service members have close relatives facing deportation, and hundreds of veterans have been expelled.

That sounds a hell of a lot better to us than just yelling "what part of illegal don't you understand?" at families while claiming that those who invaded the US Capitol to overthrow democracy are patriots. But you know how we liberals are such big moral relativists.

In addition to the humanitarian paroles, Politico says administration officials are also considering "reopening deportation cases in court to give immigrants another chance and offering waivers to remove obstacles blocking immigrants from obtaining legal green cards through family members." Again, that sounds good!

The article also asks, hey, is this review program going to reconsider any of the deportations that occurred under the Obama-Biden administration? Let's not forget that when Barack Obama was pursuing a comprehensive immigration reform deal in Congress, he ramped up deportations in a misguided effort to convince Republicans he was "serious" about the border. The Senate passed the reform bill, but the tea party takeover of the House meant John Boehner would never ever even bring it up for a vote.

Again, there are certainly cases that seem like they should be reviewed, like that of Brigido Isidro Acosta, the husband of an American citizen, Maria Paz Perez. Acosta was deported in 2013 because of what sure as hell sounds like a case of racial profiling back in 2002. He'd arrived at Dallas-Fort Worth airport on a valid tourist visa, on the way to visit his mom in Illinois. But a customs official didn't like the looks of him, because single Mexican men traveling alone can't have mothers, they must be drug smugglers.

Acosta wasn't a smuggler, but

After he was strip-searched and subjected to hours of interrogation, he says, Acosta agreed to go back to Mexico. Apparently out of spite, the official stamped a deportation record into his passport, making it impossible for Acosta to return legally for 10 years.

In 2006, Acosta re-entered the US, this time what part of illegally didn't he understand, and lived near his mom in Illinois, where he met Perez and started a family.

Then he got scooped up in 2013 and the old, false prior deportation "order" came back to bite him on the ass. He's been stuck in Mexico since, while in the US, Perez has had to deal with health crises, and her father's death last fall from COVID-19. Acosta's mother was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in February. So yeah, they're considering an appeal for humanitarian parole for Acosta, too.

Here's hoping the review process restores some humanity to US immigration policy. Yes, even if Tucker Carlson sneers at the very idea that noncitizens are even human.

[Politico / Marshall Project / Photo: Jill_Ion, Creative Commons license 2.0]

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Doktor Zoom

Doktor Zoom's real name is Marty Kelley, and he lives in the wilds of Boise, Idaho. He is not a medical doctor, but does have a real PhD in Rhetoric. You should definitely donate some money to this little mommyblog where he has finally found acceptance and cat pictures. He is on maternity leave until 2033. Here is his Twitter, also. His quest to avoid prolixity is not going so great.

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