Republicans cry foul of Obama’s executive order

- Posted in America by Visa Bureauon 05 July 2012

The president's directive has made waves across an America polarised over the issue of US immigration. The effects the directive has had on the upcoming presidential election have already been felt and could even influence the outcome.

While the directive was hailed as landmark event in the struggle for legal status for many illegal immigrants, Republicans have been outraged at the perceived granting of amnesty to illegal immigrants.

Republicans, led by presidential nominee Mitt Romney, have been critical of the directive and the president's circumvention of Congress but have yet to say how they would both repeal the order and address the issue of an estimated 11 million illegal immigrants.

However, the chairman of the House of Representatives Judiciary Committee, Republican Lamar Smith, has taken a different approach and demanded answers as to how the directive will be enforced.

In a letter to the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency (ICE), Rep. Smith claims that without proper eligibility requirements clearly laid out, the ability to combat fraud or abuse of the president's directive will be 'virtually impossible'.

'Such a lack of forethought about processing and implementation prior to an announcement of the policy is a dereliction of the duty the president vowed to uphold,' wrote Rep. Smith.

'Unfortunately, this administration continues to place partisan politics and illegal immigrants ahead of the American people and the rule of the law.'

Rep. Smith has demanded that five requirements be put in place to determine eligibility for the directive:

  • An applicant must apply in person
  • An applicant must provide a school transcript
  • The transcript must be validated by the issuing school
  • An applicant must provide evidence proving they were in the US when the transcript was issued
  • An applicant must provide evidence of residency in the US for the past five years

Rep. Smith also included more than questions regarding the directive's enforcement which cover such issues as the deportation of any failed applicants, the prosecution of any employers found to have employed the applicant before the directive took effect and whether an applicant's family could qualify for hardship to avoid deportation.


The American Visa Bureau is an independent migration consultancy specialising in helping people from Visa Waiver Program (VWP) countries make their ESTA application.