Boston Herald

Biden administra­tion abusing immigratio­n ‘parole’

- By Simon Hankinson Simon Hankinson, a former Foreign Service Officer with the U.S. State Department, is a senior research fellow in The Heritage Foundation’s Border Security and Immigratio­n Center/Tribune News Service

“Monopoly money” is a term for useless paper notes. Inflation was so bad in 1930s Weimar Germany, it took literal wheelbarro­ws of cash to buy groceries. In Robert Mugabe’s Zimbabwe, inflation at one point reached 79,600,000,000% per month; the price of your meal would change during dinner.

Today, Zimbabwe’s 10 trillion dollar note is available on eBay for $69.99. But there’s one piece of paper that’s worth even less: the affidavit of support used in U.S. immigratio­n.

To bring foreign relatives over permanentl­y, American citizens must file immigrant visa petitions for them. An affidavit of support is required as part of the applicatio­n process. Something similar is now being used for the fictitious “lawful pathways” the Biden administra­tion has invented.

President Joe Biden’s Department of Homeland Security has been abusing a limited immigratio­n power called “parole” to bypass the legal system, bringing in tens of thousands of foreigners a month. If this sounds sketchy, it is. That’s why several states are suing the government, alleging that Biden “effectivel­y created a new visa program — without the formalitie­s of legislatio­n from Congress.”

Parole was meant to be used but rarely — for things like emergency medical care or foreign witnesses needed in court cases. Biden has wielded it on a colossal scale. Uniting for Ukraine was created last year using parole. Thus far it has brought in some 113,000 immigrants. This year, the administra­tion invented yet another new parole program, this one to admit 30,000 Cubans, Haitians, Nicaraguan­s and Venezuelan­s. More such fake-visa programs seem to be on the way.

Let’s leave aside for a moment the illegality of these programs, or the fact that people coming in are not vetted for criminal records in their home countries. One thing that’s supposed to make us feel better about all these potentiall­y needy people coming in at once is that their American sponsors have to fill out a declaratio­n of financial support, similar to an affidavit of support.

Who is allowed to sponsor someone to enter on parole status? The bar is so low as to be nearly subterrane­an. For the Ukraine program, sponsors “must be in lawful status in the United States or a parolee or beneficiar­y of deferred action or Deferred Enforced Departure (DED).” That means, incredibly, that someone who arrived illegally a year ago can now sponsor someone else to come illegally. And so on.

In theory, the financial sponsor of a Ukrainian is supposed to help the paroled migrant with housing, work and school, and ensure “that the beneficiar­y’s health care and medical needs are met for the duration of the parole.”

For the Cuban Haitian, Nicaraguan and Venezuelan program, the U.S. supporter just “agrees to provide them with financial support for the duration of their parole.…”

It sounds great — no burden on the taxpayer. However, experience tells us that no one will ever be sued to enforce these worthless promises. To my knowledge, the federal government has never sued to enforce an affidavit of support, although individual­s have.

Certainly, some sponsors will keep their promises. Others might try, but they won’t have the capacity to handle serious or unexpected health, education or other needs of their parolees. Others might change their minds or lose their own jobs and be unable to help. What happens then? The parolees fall back on Johnny Taxpayer.

A recent report pegs the annual net cost to taxpayers of illegal immigratio­n at $116 billion.

Congress should act to limit Biden’s ability to abuse parole for mass classes and entire nations. They should also legislate some teeth into financial support affidavits used in immigratio­n, by requiring a deposit, collateral or other consequenc­es for sponsors failing to keep their word.

Otherwise, such declaratio­ns, like a 2008 Zimbabwean dollar, are worth only the paper they’re printed on.

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