Perhaps to give him “creds” with voters who are concerned about illegal immigrants, of just to cover up his progressives like to call President Obama the deporter-in-chief. The truth is Obama has refused to enforce U.S. immigration laws and a quantitative analysis show that the number of deportations by this administration is much lower than recent administrations. In fact, over the course of the eight years of the Obama presidency, ICE has averaged fewer deportations per year, than any administration since Nixon’s.

As reported by Jessica Vaughan of the Center for Immigration StudiesDecember 30 saw the Department of Homeland Security release the annual report on ICE enforcement statistics. This report covers the 2016 fiscal year (10/1/2015- 9/13/2016) . In a nutshell, the 2015 statistics were bad, the 2016 numbers released last month are are much worse.

Perhaps that’s why this latest report, the first under the supervision of new OIS Director Marc Rosenblum, contains, “only a fraction of the vital statistics that traditionally have been published.” Additionally this report continues the Obama tradition of changing the meaning of terms as to obfuscate what is really going on.

Key 2016 findings include:

  • Deportations credited to ICE in 2016 increased by 2 percent. All of the increase came from cases of aliens arrested by the Border Patrol, not interior (non border) enforcement. Previous administrations did not include arrests at the border by Border Patrol in the ICE numbers, however Obama includes them as a way to inflate the ICE deportation numbers.
  • Interior deportations fell from 69,478 in 2015 to 65,322 in 2016, out of a population of illegal aliens now estimated at 12 million.
  • The number of criminal alien deportations (supposedly Obama’s priority) fell from 63,127 in 2015 to 60,318 in 2016. There is an estimated population of two million criminal aliens.
  • Because of the different way deportation numbers were recorded (ICE vs. Border Patrol for example) any comparison of Obama deportations to previous administrations is difficult, however “it certainly is not record-breaking number” of deportations as Obama has claimed.

In 2016, ICE removed a total of 240,255 aliens:

Those numbers are just 2 percent higher (4,842 more) than 2015, when ICE removed 235,413 aliens. The 2015 number was 24 percent lower than 2014 and 41 percent lower than the peak number of deportations credited to ICE in 2012, and was  the lowest number of deportations credited to ICE since 2006.

“What little growth there was in deportations credited to ICE was the result of a higher number of cases turned over to ICE after apprehension by the Border Patrol, not more interior enforcement.” As mentioned above previous presidents did not include Border Patrol arrests in the ICE numbers.

ICE removed 65,332 aliens from the interior in 2016. That is a decline of 6 percent from 2015 and down 73 percent from 2009, the year President Obama took office.

Nearly all (98 percent) of the aliens removed from the interior in 2016 were convicted criminals. The report emphasizes that the percentage of interior removals who are criminals has been increasing, but never mentions that the actual number of criminals removed has been declining.

In 2016, ICE removed 60,318 criminal aliens from the interior. This is a decline of 4 percent from 2015 and a decline of 60 percent from the peak in interior criminal alien removals in 2010.

The main reason for the decline is the Obama administration’s prioritization scheme that has steadily narrowed the types of cases that ICE officers are permitted to pursue. These policies have exempted all but the most egregious alien offenders from deportation. Currently only aliens convicted of felonies, significant misdemeanors, or three lesser misdemeanors are considered priorities, and exceptions are allowed in many cases, such as if the alien has acquired a family or other community ties here.

The most appropriate way to track annual deportations is to “examine interior deportations and border deportations as separate and distinct types of enforcement,” as they are different. Because of the way this administration has confused and combined the data, the only way to compare the Obama administration statistics to previous administrations is to compare total deportations executed by all immigration agencies using figures on removals and returns that in the DHS “Yearbook of Immigration Statistics.”

According to that source:

The Obama administration has completed a total of 5.3 million deportations, counting both interior and border cases. That is a little over half the number of deportations under the George W. Bush administration. The true record for deportations was set by the Clinton administration, which completed 12.3 million deportations.

The chart below demonstrates, the Obama administration has the lowest average annual number of deportations by any president since the Nixon administration. Just as he has done with so much of the information he has presented to the American voters on so many different topics,  Barack Obama has not been truthful about his enforcement of immigration laws. When it comes to illegal immigrants Barack Obama is NOT the deporter-in-chief, instead he can be classified as the support-in-chief.



Note for the full report by Jessica Vaughn and other great information about immigration both legal and illegal, please go to the Center For Immigration Studies.