In yet another tragedy related to immigration, at least four migrants perished when a boat capsized off the coast of Miami. Reports are that, among the dead or missing, are Haitian and Jamaican nationals. Opponents of comprehensive immigration reform often predict that any new immigration law that conveys benefits will result in migrants attempting to come to the United States.
The fact is that migrants attempt to enter the United States consistently now even without any new immigration laws or regulations that would afford them legal status. The United States is one of the greatest countries in the World and people have and will always risk their lives to live the American Dream.
The prospect of immigration reform legislation are not as promising as they were before the federal budget and debt ceiling issues took center stage. What will be interesting to see is what, if anything, President Obama will do if Congress cannot pass a meaningful and comprehensive immigration reform. President Obama has shown his willingness in the past to use his executive authority to implement policies and regulations to achieve what Congress could not.
For instance, President Obama has implemented the “State-side Waiver” that allows people needing a waiver to apply for the waiver while still in the United States and, if approved, return to their country to consular process without risk. President Obama also implemented his own version of the “Dream Act” according deferred action status to certain young immigrants who were brought to the United States before the age of 16 and attend or graduated high school.
Hopefully, Congress will keep comprehensive immigration reform on its immediate agenda.