Immigration TBD Notices

The Supreme Court is considering a case involving an illegal alien who was…paroled…into the US on his promise to appear in court for his asylum hearing on the specified date, which was named as TBD on his release/parole paper. Later, when a date came open, the illegal alien was emailed his date certain, and when he didn’t appear, he was tracked down, arrested, and is in deportation hearing status. The illegal alien claims he never got the emailed notice, and his case has wound up before the Supremes.

The government’s position is that the two-step notice—replacing “TBD” with a specific date via a later correspondence—is perfectly fine, noting the “thousands” of illegals who do show up on the date appointed via the second correspondence, and noting also how unfair it would be to them for the Court to void the system. The illegal alien’s position is that the two-step notice doesn’t fit the statute.

My beef is not with the arguments themselves, but with the Biden administration’s couching of its position. Biden’s Assistant Solicitor General Charles McCloud, who is making the argument before the court, is threatening the Court if they don’t rule Biden’s way. McCloud:

We are very concerned that those hundreds of thousands of cases could be injected back into the immigration system.
So…that already substantial increase we have seen is going to turn into an avalanche.

I have two problems with that. First, convenience to the government is not a valid criterion with which to decide whether to follow the law. Name the date in the first place rather than the shortcut of TBD. If the government can’t meet the schedule, that’s when a second notice would be useful. Follow the law is the uncaveated requirement for government officials. Government convenience is irrelevant.

Second is the claimed need to refile immigration cases against illegal aliens, with that leading to an avalanche of cases. The “avalanche” business is risible on its face. It’s only necessary to see the rate at which illegal aliens already (don’t) appear for their clearly stated court dates (those claimed thousands who do appear are against the millions of illegal aliens, just during the present administration, who are “paroled” into our nation with future dates who have not appeared) to see that no avalanche will occur. The only hard work would be to fill out the standard forms giving notice of failure to appear and tasking the relevant police authorities with tracking down the missing illegal aliens and haling them in to a deportation court.

That last is a work load that never would have occurred and wouldn’t be necessary today, had this administration and too many prior ones not skipped that last step, and had this administration actually kept our border secure, a failure that has only made the enforcement side of the problem worse. And that brings us back to my prior point about convenience to the government.

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