The Treason Lobby's New Immigration Henchman in Washington – Attorney General Alberto Gonzales
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The Treason Lobby's iron triangle of foundations, the news media and their handmaidens in the federal government is alive and well.  The cozy relationship among the three became appallingly obvious last week when U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales embraced the very same asylum report (dutifully trumpeted in the media) that I just exposed on as an obvious Treason Lobby vendetta against immigration judges.

Essentially, the Treason Lobby is trying to establish the principle that the statistics of the most immigration-compliant judges should be imposed on all.

This conformity approach gives extremists the chance to dictate to the whole bench.  Unfortunately, the Attorney General just took the Treason Lobby's bait by announcing a "review" of the asylum grant-rate study.

On July 31, various Treason Lobby-friendly foundations sponsored the release of a report called "Immigration Judges—An extensive analysis of how hundreds of thousands of requests for asylum in the United States have been handled has documented a great disparity in the rate at which individual immigration judges declined the applications."  The press dutifully covered this non-event.

The report was produced by TRAC Immigration (Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse), "a non-partisan research organization associated with Syracuse University," and supported by the JEHT Foundation, the Ford Foundation, the Knight Foundation and the New York Times Company Foundation.

Then along comes our National Council of La Raza-honored Attorney General Alberto Gonzales.

On August 9, nine days after the asylum report was released, the Attorney General springs into action and orders his minions in the Department of Justice to launch an investigation against the scourge of possible disparate asylum-denying immigration judges in the Executive Office for Immigration Review's (EOIR) Immigration Court system.

Attorney General Gonzales announced his intentions to the EOIR's over 200 immigration judges in person at the EOIR's annual conference last Wednesday morning at the luxurious J.W. Marriott on Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington, D.C.    The timing of the report couldn't have been better for maximum effectiveness . . . but  of course it was planned that way from the start.

The Attorney General's remarks on the asylum report came as part of a larger twenty-two point plan entitled "Measures to Improve the Immigration Courts and the Board of Immigration Appeals." [PDF]

Most of the proposed improvements are obvious Treason Lobby-friendly initiatives which would impose greater controls on the EOIR's immigration judges in the field, expand the number of Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) members, and generally expand the EOIR bureaucracy across the board.

But to the Treason Lobby's chagrin, the Attorney General also announced a process to write federal regulations for sanctions power, giving EOIR immigration judges and their BIA appellate review counterparts the ability to impose civil monetary fines on private immigration lawyers for misconduct.  And no matter how frivolous their behavior may be, the Treason Lobby's legal henchmen won't like getting hit in the pocketbook with immigration judge-imposed fines by the EOIR Immigration Court.

Regarding the asylum report, the Attorney General's "Memorandum for Immigration Judges and Members of the Board of Immigration Appeals" dated August 9 stated:

"Analysis and Recommendations Regarding Disparities in Asylum Grant Rates – A recent study has highlighted apparent disparities among immigration judges in asylum grant rates.  The Director of EOIR, in consultation with the Acting Chief Immigration Judge, will review this study and provide an analysis and, if appropriate, recommendations to the Deputy Attorney General with respect to this issue."

So to recap: the Treason Lobby makes the case for more asylum grants in Immigration Court.  The media trumpets the report.  The Attorney General of the United States just happens to be meeting with all of the EOIR immigration judges within the Department of Justice nine days later . . . and announces an investigation of the "highlighted apparent disparities."

And so it goes inside the Beltway . . .  business as usual.

In response to my debunking of the TRAC Immigration asylum report last week –  using the EOIR's 2005 statistical yearbook [PDF, specifically page 27] – a reader sent these comments via e-mail:

"Lately, there have been a number of related stories about how the immigration judges and courts are being reviewed, usually followed by the quote from Attorney General Gonzales:  "…. some immigration judges "can aptly be described as intemperate or even abusive and [their] work must improve." [ Courts told to be nicer to immigrants, CNN.Com, January 10, 2006;]

"Conversely, many immigration judges are equally abusive to the government representatives, and thus to the American people, who are trying to defend the integrity of immigration law.  Immigration judges who may have social justice roots and left-leaning ideals deliberately undermine this integrity by granting asylum to undeserving aliens based on little more than a fanciful, unverified story, tears on demand, or good prompting as to what to say by their attorneys.

"Some immigration judges use their own creative interpretation of the "particular social group" prong of eligibility for asylum, to expand eligibility to accommodate those who might not otherwise qualify, and may not fit the traditional definition of "political asylum," and little oversight or accountability appears to exist.

"Though the data is eye-opening, in positive and negative ways, the study does not seem to address this reality at all, that fraud exists.  After reading this report, it appears very one-sided on behalf of any alien applicant, when in reality, a good deal of fraud exists and are sometimes simply desperate attempts to stay.

"I would also be curious about data on the following:

  • the number of immigration judges whose asylum grants that are overturned by the BIA;

  • the number of decisions which have an immigration judge finding of a frivolous or fraudulent claim, which would bar an alien them from any future benefit;

  • the grant and denial rates as they pertain to just juvenile alien cases (as traditionally only certain immigration judges preside over special juvenile courts) considering the lowered standard of proof and credibility they are entitled to."

Bravo, dear reader.

Unfortunately there probably isn't a pile of tax-free foundation money just lying around waiting to be used by savvy readers like yourself, and other like-minded individuals, to investigate these issues.  Most likely, the American people will never know about the questions referred to by the reader. Furthermore,if data exists at all on these issues, it never makes it into the EOIR's statistical yearbooks [PDF].

I've maintained repeatedly that the litigation-creating bureaucracy of the EOIR should be abolished outright and replaced with summary methods of removal by federal officers.

But as long as the Treason Lobby's iron triangle of foundations, the media and compliant government officials is in effect, the necessity for the existence of the EOIR will never be publicly questioned.  The federal immigration bureaucracy can look forward to ever-expanding horizons of greater complexity, more alien-friendly mandates, and ever increasing centralized control.

As long as the Treason Lobby sets the agenda from behind the scenes, the most pressing EOIR scandals ripe for investigation by the Attorney General will be for crimes against diversity such as the offense du jour of not loving asylum-seeking aliens enough.

Juan Mann [email him] is an attorney and the proprietor of He writes a weekly column for and contributes to Michelle Malkin's Immigration BLOG. 

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