All over the internet, there seems to be a buzz about President Obama’s policy to grant deferred action for non-citizens who would benefit from the DREAM Act. Everyone seems to be excited about the idea that individuals who are undocumented will have the opportunity to work legally and not fear deportation. Everyone seems to be praising President Obama for his policy. I do not share their enthusiasm.
President Obama has merely issued a policy. This is NOT a law. Once the Obama Presidency is over, the next president is free to discontinue the policy. What President Obama has done is not a wonderful thing. It is an election year stunt that is taking advantage of people who are desperate. During the Republican Primaries, Mitt Romney repeatedly stated that he opposed the DREAM Act, so it should be no surprise that Mr. Romney has come out and stated that he will not continue the policy, if he is elected.
A lot of people may be thinking that if they get their paper work in right away, it will be approved and they’ll have deferred action for 2 years. When President Obama announced his policy in June, he indicated that it would take the Citizenship and Immigration Service (CIS) until August 15th to come up with a procedure for applying. There is a rumor that there will be a filing fee. I suspect that due to the volume of requests that will be received, as well as the bureaucracy that will be created to process the requests, it will take months for the requests to be processed. It’s very likely to take months for these applications to be processed. If CIS actually begins accepting applications on August 15th, it’s not likely that it will be approved before the election. If Obama loses and your application is not processed before Romney takes office, they you will have wasted your money on the application. If you file before the election and Romney wins, not only is it likely that you will not receive deferred action, but you run the risk of bringing yourself to the attention of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) for deportation. The election is a little over three months away. What’s the harm in waiting to file your deferred action request?