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MYTH VS. FACT: No, Junk Lawsuits Cannot Derail Security Triggers

Apr 18, 2013 | Press Releases

MYTH: The ACLU can just tie up the E-Verify system in court for 10 years and all the legalized illegal immigrants get green cards anyway.

  • Washington Examiner’s Conn Carroll: “[A]nd it is true. His bill does create six such triggers. But it also creates a huge loophole that makes them entirely irrelevant. … In other words, if the Chamber of Commerce sues to block creation of the E-Verify program, and they either win, or that suit is still pending after ten years, then the DHS Secretary is empowered to grant permanent legal residence to all legalized immigrants regardless of the actual security situation on the border.  Or maybe environmentalists will sue to block construction of the border fence. Or maybe the ACLU will sue to block the visa-exit system. There are a thousand ways liberal groups could sue the federal government to slow border enforcement. And as long as just one of these suits are still pending ten years after the bill has become law, the DHS Secretary is empowered to grant permanent legal status to everyone who benefited from the law.” (Conn Carroll, “The Gang Of Ocho’s Huge Border Security Loophole,” Washington Examiner, 4/17/13)
  • RedState’s Daniel Horowitz: “The ACLU, along with multi-million-dollar immigrant legal defense funds, have already promised to challenge any enforcement measure passed even with bipartisan support. … In this case, they will challenge E-verify and they will challenge the visa tracking system. (Daniel Horowitz, “Legal Waivers Will Defang Enforcement In Gang Bill,” RedState, 4/18/13)
  • Daily Caller’s Mickey Kaus: “In other words, if the ACLU can just tie up the E-Verify system at the DHS and in court for 9.5 years after legalization (which happens six months after the date of enactment) all the legalized illegals get green cards anyway, whether the system is in place or not. The same goes for the exit-visa system.”  (Mickey Kaus, “Krauthammer Got Played,” Daily Caller, 4/18/13)

FACT: While it is true that any legislation passed by Congress is subject to potential review by the Supreme Court (see: ObamaCare), it is simply hysteria to suggest that the ACLU, or any other group for that matter, can derail the security triggers by simply tying them up in court for 10 years. The fact is that the federal government must fully implement the border security plans, the employment verification system and the exit system to track visa overstays before a single green card is awarded. E-Verify and the exit system must be 100 percent implemented within five years, and those enforcement measures begin on day one, not once any pending lawsuits are settled. Merely filing a lawsuit cannot stop the implementation of any section of this legislation and nothing short of a court ordered injunction could delay the security measures from going into place.

In fact, to defend the legislation from the type of lawsuits skeptics fear, the bill specifically limits litigation around the border fence to constitutional challenges. 

In addition, employment verification and the entry-exit visa system must be up and running within five years of the legislation being passed. This leaves plenty of time for judicial review, and complete implementation of the security triggers before the 10 year mark.