Newt on immigration: What if we had local boards who could legalize certain illegals? « Hot Air
Newt Gingrich's proposal is either a meaningless duplication of existing bodies within the federal government or an unconstitutional delegation of power to bodies outside of the government. It is a surprise to hear a former Speaker of The House say this. The granting of citizenship is a Congressional power under Article I, Sect. 8, clause iv, "To establish a uniform Rule of Naturalization." That is however subject to the poorly worded blanket statement regarding citizenship in the XIVth Amendment. While I can see Congress delegating to local boards and agencies, similar to Draft Boards that Gingrich mentions, an advisory function in determining eligibility under the rules that it establishes, a function that is really already done by local USCIS offices, the old INS, that are already enmeshed in a web of local lawyers advisory boards and interest groups, the actual granting of citizenship cannot be delegated to a local authority that was not established by and is not bound to operate under the authority of Congress. For example ever since the XIVth Amendment States no longer have the authority to deny or grant citizenship.
If the State of California cannot perform that function then how can some private body? If these Boards are to be part of the government then how will this differ from the present system of State Department offices for US Citizenship and Immigration Services? That agency clearly needs to be either massively expanded or to be restructured, and the present immigration and visa system needs to be rewritten with the Ted Kennedy family unification loopholes closed. Simply layering on another set of review boards is unlikely to help.