Agudath Israel Hails Immigration Policy On Young People

The immigration policy enunciated by the Obama Administration regarding individuals who entered the United States in their youth was applauded by Agudath Israel of America, a national Orthodox Jewish organization. Under the new U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) directive, there would be “deferred action” for a period of two years in regard to some individuals who face removal from the country. Persons falling within this category will be eligible to apply for work authorization.

“The policy is both pragmatic and proper,” said David Grunblatt, Chair of Agudath Israel’s Legal Services Network Immigration Committee. “These foreign-born individuals were brought to this country as youngsters, were educated here, have contributed their talents here and continue to live here. They should not live in the shadow of being expelled from the U.S. to a country where they have never lived and might not even speak the language.”

The DHS’ policy is discretionary in nature and is intended to be applied on a case by case basis to persons not above age 30. Eligibility criteria include: entry into the U.S. under age 16, continuous residence for five years, and current enrollment in school, graduation from high school or honorable discharge from the Armed Forces. Persons will not be deemed eligible if they have been convicted of a felony or significant misdemeanor, or otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety.

DHS has also made clear that “deferred action” confers no substantive right, immigration status, or pathway to citizenship.

“The policy addresses an urgent and unfortunate situation — one that has affected many members of the Jewish Community that have sought our help but for whom little could be done,” concluded Rabbi Abba Cohen, Agudath Israel’s Vice President for Federal Affairs and Washington Director. “And, given our community’s history, we must be particularly sensitive that our immigration policies embody compassion and common sense. This is a positive step in that direction.” TLS.

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  1. What a tremendous chillul hashem. Shame on the Agudah!
    What President Obama did was both unlawful as this policy represents conscious decision to not enforce existing laws and immoral. It is immoral because the President himself said over two years ago that he could not do anything about immigration without Congress and now he is acting unilaterally without Congress’ approval.
    He made this decsion as a politically motivated stunt to shore up his base and help with his reelection. And for that matter I don’t understand how the Agudah can support any position tha Obama takes if not solely to prevent him from being reelected.
    Secondly, the logic just doesnt play out, while I understand that deportation for a 20 year old who came here at age 2 does not make sense, the answer is not to skirt our laws. Although they are not responsible in America we have a notion of personal responsibility and it is their parents or grandparents fault for bringing them here. In addition although these individuals’ plight is serious and understandable, it does not mean we should make drastic changes that affect everyone in our country for the sake of these indivduals. Let us analyze this.
    If those 800,000 saffected by this policy are out of work, untrained, or criminals then they are detrimentally affecting our country. Conversely if they are trained talented , hardworking, then they are taking away jobs from legal American citizens in a time when we have over 22 million unemployed or underemployed people! If we are doing this out of some form of the American capacity for mercy, than by that logic every time we see a homeless panhandler or shnorrer we should not only give them a dollar but our clothes, our home, our job and our social security card. which essentially is what we are doing.
    And finally the reasoning that we have to be senstive because of our commnunities history just doesn’t play. I don’t understand when did we come here illegally, we all had to be sponsored. And if we did come here illegally, did Mexicans escape a systematic continent wide genocide? Were they forcible ejected from their homes and towns in Mexico? Do they not have a country to call their own?
    Let me clarify one thing, I do agree that if someone come to this country and serves honorably in our military then not only should they get a work permit but they should be granted full citizenship after a predetermined number of tours. That is clear to me, but again this is only my opinion and i believe we should enact legislation to this effect.
    So please explain to me why the Agudah would endorse a position that has millions of Legal Americans fighting mad. The Agudah might be on the right side of history but certainly not on the right side of the Chillul Hashem.

  2. What would you say if a jewish child was brought here and then INS sent the man back to Russia. The can’t even speak Russian. Would you support the Agudah lobying for him to stay in the U.S.? These children didn’t break anty laws. America is the only country that they know. They deserve a chance at thew American dream.

  3. to # 2.double standard: No, I wouldn’t be happy, and I’m not saying it would be the right thing to do, but the law is the law and it would be the fault of the person who brought the child here illegally. In addition the fatal flaw in your reasoning is that you keep comparing people who simply want a better life (which is entirely understandable) to people who are escaping from a country with a systematic and government sponsored suppression of human rights and religious liberty. Last I checked Mexico is a democratic country with duly elected officials and has no record of deporting, oppressing or killing its Catholic majority or minority groups.

  4. I think everyone is missing the point here. Everyone understands that there may need to be new LAWS passed to address the broken illegal immigration system. However, Congress passes the laws, and the President (the executive branch) must enforce those laws.

    If Agudas Yisroel feels that the law should be changed, they should lobby Congress to change the law. Until that happens, the law is the law and the President must enforce the law.

    Imagine a future President deciding that he will enforce the civil rights of all minorities in the USA, but not the Jews. He just feels (for whatever reason) that it is best for America that the civil rights of American Jews should not be enforced, and if anyone wants to kill or discrimnate against Jews, the US Justice Department will not intervene.

    If we allow President Obama to get away with decideing which American laws he wants to enforce, there will come a time when an anti-semitic President will decide that he doesn’t want to enforce laws protecting Jews.

    You can’t have it both ways.

    Therefore, Agudas Yisroel is WRONG for supporting the President when he decides which laws he will enforce, and which he will not enforce.

    If you don’t like the law, lobby Congress to change it. Or vote in new Congress members to change the law. But we are a nation of laws and everyone must keep the laws, or we will be subject to a dictatorship.

  5. #6 It’s ‘clientele’ is out of touch with Agudas Yisrael. As long as Agudas Yisrael is in touch with Daas Torah, nothing else really matters. Their mission is not to curry favor with their ‘clientele’.

  6. I dot support imunity for those who broke the law. Just for the children that were brought here. I used Russia because it is no worse than Mexico. I don’t like Obama either and will vote againts him in November but let’s be honost enogh to admit that he is right on this issue. As for “the laws is the law.” The legislative branch writes the law so the president is right to change it. Blaiming the ones who who broght them here may make you fell better but who cares. For once Obama is right let’s support it.

  7. Who will pay for these children for school,medical expenses? Now the parents will be told that they can stat too and we the taxpayers will be footingt the bill for everyone—not OBAMA THEY ARE ILLEGALS. Why is Obama trying to give this country away? Is he the President of theUSA or not??

  8. Number 9 – Double Standards

    You very obviously have no clue how laws are written in this country, and how laws are enforced or changed. President Obama is not part of the legislative brance, he is part of the executive branch. President Obama has no right to change the laws without Congress.

    You still haven’t answered my question. Even if President Obama is right about the policy, he must still enforce the existing law until it is changed. And the existing law, as written by Congress, requires the President to deport all illegal aliens.

    Again, do you want the President deciding which laws he will enforce, and which laws he will not enforce?

    You have no clue how the US Government works, and you probably have no clue why you will vote against Obama. Probably because of his positions on Israel. You don’t even begin to understand how his actions and policies are detsroying the fabric of our great country AMERICA.

    So go take out a Constitution and read it, and understand how our great country works, and why it became the greatest country on the face of the earth (until Obama began ignoring the laws of the country and began ruling as a dictator. Historically, dictators have never been good, by the way.)

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