The Corner

Re: Methinks This Will Get Around

Rudy was correct in the Glenn Beck interview that simply being an illegal alien is a civil infraction rather than a crime, which is why visa overstayers can’t be prosecuted for overstaying (although it is a crime to lie in order to get a visa or gain admission to the country, which is what most visa overstayers have done). But “entry without inspection” (border-jumping) is a federal crime, as is using a Social Security number that is fake or belongs to someone else. In other words, even under current law, virtually all illegal aliens have committed federal crimes. Also, as a former prosecutor, Giuliani knows perfectly well that making illegal presence a crime would not require the prosecution of every illegal alien — rather, it would give the immigration service an additional tool, allowing the government to use its discretion and decide whether to deport the alien or prosecute him. Most will still be dealt with administratively, but it would be a lot easier to lock up those you want locked up if you could prosecute for illegal presence.

Mark Krikorian — Mark Krikorian, a nationally recognized expert on immigration issues, has served as Executive Director of the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) since 1995.

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