Based on his record and recent gaffes on the subject, former New York City Mayor Rudy Guiliani could be a disaster on illegal immigration should he become President.
Last month on CNN, Guiliani asserted to host Glenn Beck that crossing the U.S. border is not a crime. The former-federal-prosecutor-cum-illegal-immigration-zealot showed he needs to brush up on his law books.
Wrong on the Law
Giuliani further displayed his ignorance talking to reporters after the CNN gaffe. “Illegal immigration is not a crime,” he claimed. “Crossing the border and being caught is a misdemeanor. Being an illegal immigrant in this country is subject to deportation, but not prosecution.” Wrong!
You’d think an ex-prosecutor might know that, while Title 18 of the U.S. Code contains most of the federal criminal statutes, many federal criminal statutes appear in titles other than 18 U.S. Code.
For instance, narcotics statutes are in Title 21. Title 8, the immigration code, similarly includes criminal provisions that relate to immigration. Criminal provisions throughout the federal codebook refer to Title 18—meaning the offenses referred to are crimes.
Indeed, Section of 275(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1375(a)) states plainly, so even nonlawyers can understand: “Any alien who (1) enters or attempts to enter the United States at any time or place other than as designated by immigration officers, or (2) eludes examination or inspection by immigration officers, or (3) attempts to enter or obtains entry to the United States by a willfully false or misleading representation or the willful concealment of a material fact, shall, for the first commission of any such offense, be fined under Title 18 or imprisoned not more than 6 months, or both, and, for a subsequent commission of any such offense, be fined under Title 18, or imprisoned not more than 2 years, or both.”
In other words, under federal law, any alien who sneaks across our border or comes in by fraud commits a crime. Even attempting such entry is a crime, not a mere civil offense.
The first commission of unauthorized entry is a misdemeanor. But second or more illegal entries each constitute a felony.
Prosecutors don’t often criminally prosecute border jumpers, even repeat offenders. But they clearly could.
Federal officials routinely put illegal crossers into removal proceedings. Such deportation processes afford the alien lawbreakers fewer “rights,” for example not entitling them to a court-appointed lawyer and a jury trial.
These civil proceedings are quicker and cheaper. But the plea-bargain process can get foreign criminals swiftly through criminal proceedings that would hold them more fully accountable for their crimes.
Most Americans consider a felony a serious crime and a felon a serious criminal. Giuliani is out of touch with America on that notion where foreign lawbreakers are concerned.
Some Republicans may think of Guiliani as a tough-on-crime ex-mayor. But on immigration, he stands wholly at odds with the views of the vast majority of the Republican base—and with the vast majority of the general electorate.
Not only does Guiliani continue to flak for illegal immigration, he advocates amnesty for millions. He would secure the border but would deport only illegal aliens who’ve done big crimes.
According to a Washington Times report, “Mr. Giuliani has said he would first secure the borders and deport illegal aliens who have committed major crimes, then offer a path to citizenship to some illegal aliens.”
As mayor of New York City, Giuliani established a shameful record of coddling illegal immigrants. In 1994, his first year as mayor, he said: “If you come here, and you work hard, and you happen to be in an undocumented status, you’re one of the people who we want in this city.”
Common sense would tell you that one doesn’t just “happen to be in an undocumented status” as an illegal alien. Either there is willful, unlawful entry or overstaying of an expired visa (as with many 9/11 terrorists). Visa overstay may be just a civil violation, but it is a willful act of lawbreaking. Such illegals continue to stay in this nation wrongfully.
Giuliani thumbed his nose at the rule of law with New York’s sanctuary policy. Not only did Guiliani continue Mayor Koch’s egregious Executive Order 124. Giuliani sued to keep it (federal courts ruled against him).
Giuliani’s sanctuary order violated a federal law enacted in 1996. Congress outlawed state and local policies that restrict public employees from inquiring about immigration status or reporting immigration violators to federal authorities.
But Giuliani litigated to keep city employees’ hands tied, to the advantage of illegal aliens. His sanctuary policy bore evil fruit, most notably in 2002, when Mexican gangsters gang-raped and brutally beat a 42-year-old Queens woman. Four of the five men arrested were illegal aliens. Three of those four had prior arrest records.
But the NYPD did nothing to get these foreign brutes off American streets, inform federal authorities or honor the federal law. Instead, Rudy Guiliani’s “political correctness” toward illegal immigration victimized a mother of two.
Sadly, Rudy Giuliani appears to be an open-borders politician impersonating a law-and-order stalwart.