One of the first actions in the new Congress will be dealing with the issue of “DREAMers.” That is, illegal aliens who allege they were brought to the United States as children and who have allegedly live their entire lives here. I say allegedly because it is damned close to determine with any feeling of confidence whether the “DREAMer” was brought here as a child or if they are just a run-of-the-mill illegal alien who is lying. Be that as it may, it is a politically charged issue that is fraught with hazards. Right now legislation is being readied to address the issue, legislation that I think makes the problem worse.
Loretta Lynch, however, is of the opinion that nothing can be done other than what Obama has done.
A blanket pardon for undocumented immigrants brought to the U.S. as children would be impossible, Attorney General Loretta Lynch said Thursday morning, as would any similar blanket effort to offer clemency to those incarcerated for drug offenses.
Speaking at a POLITICO Playbook breakfast event, Lynch said the act of granting a pardon is “an individual decision that’s made on a case-by-case basis.” Thus, any effort to offer protection from deportation to the so-called “Dreamers,” undocumented individuals who were brought to the U.S. by their families as children and have grown up as Americans, would be impossible.
“There’s no legal framework or regulatory framework that allows for a pardon of a group en masse,” Lynch said. She called on Americans to continue the fight waged by the administration of President Barack Obama to protect Dreamers, arguing that to do so would be “consistent with the ideals of this country.”
This is such bullsh** that one doesn’t know where to start. In fact, the only real conclusion you can draw from it is that Lynch is either a moron who shouldn’t be allowed out without an RFID chip stuffed under her hide or that she thinks everyone else is a moron. Keep in mind, she was talking to Politico so don’t rule out the latter.
There is absolutely nothing that constrains the ability of a president from pardoning a class of people. The source of the President’s power is Article II, Section 2 of the US Contitution:
…he shall have power to grant reprieves and pardons for offenses against the United States, except in cases of impeachment.
That’s it. Now the Department of Justice has rules that it uses to administer the process of a convict requesting executive clemency but those rule obviously, at least one would have thought so, do not and cannot constrain a president from using his authority.
As Politico points out… and it is a pretty sad state of affairs when Politico disagrees with an Obama official… Jimmy Carter pardoned at least 210,000 draft dodgers. He did it as a group. He did it with no request on their part.
And I know history be hard with all those dates and sh** but there is actually a better example of a mass pardon. At the end of the American Civil War Confederate soldiers were pardoned by Andrew Johnson, en masse, in 1868:
Now, therefore, be it known that I, Andrew Johnson President of the United States, by virtue of the power and authority in me vested by the Constitution and in the name of the sovereign people of the United States, do hereby proclaim and declare unconditionally and without reservation, to all and to every person who, directly or indirectly, participated in the late insurrection or rebellion a full pardon and amnesty for the offense of treason against the United States or of adhering to their enemies during the late civil war, with restoration of all rights, privileges, and immunities under the Constitution and the laws which have been made in pursuance thereof.
What Obama and Lynch are clearly angling for is the creation of an aggrieved and sympathetic class of people that the Democrats can pretend to care about while simply using them to flog Republicans as heartless, xenophobic monsters. Like with everything else, they are not interested in a solution, they are interested in an issue. And this silly argument is really appropriate for the woman who told us she met with Bill Clinton on the runway in Phoenix to talk about her grandchildren.