The new Deferred Action policy directive from the Obama Administration certainly has opposition.
House Judiciary Committee Chairman Lamar Smith (R-Texas) is likely the most prominent detractor. Representative Smith has recently sent a lengthy letter to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Director John Morton questioning many aspects of the directive. Here is a copy of this letter:
Most of Rep. Smith’s questions relate to the implementation of Deferred Action. Given that USCIS (U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services) will be the agency presumably handling all affirmative petitions I wonder why Rep. Smith did not also address this letter to Director Mayorkas of USCIS.
The letter has legitimate questions. However, much of it appears to be a political rant. Rep. Smith repeatedly refers to the policy as an “Amnesty.” Deferred Action is NOT amnesty. It is not a pathway to a green card or U.S. citizenship. Here is a good definition of Deferred Action from the American Immigration Council: “Deferred action is a discretionary DHS decision not to pursue enforcement against a person for a specific period. A grant of deferred action does not confer lawful immigration status or alter an individual’s existing immigration status. While deferred action does not cure any prior period of unlawful presence, time in deferred action status is considered a period of stay authorized by the Secretary of DHS.” SOURCE