On Friday, the Obama administration issued a memo announcing that federal immigration officials do not have to deport illegal aliens if they are enrolled in any type of education program, if their family members have volunteered for U.S. military service, or even if they are pregnant or nursing.
This new policy of “prosecutorial discretion” was quietly announced on Friday afternoon, and completely ignored by the mainstream press.
What happened is that last Friday ICE Director John Morton issued a memo (pdf) directing his staff to use "prosecutorial discretion" in the "apprehension, detention and removal" of undocumented people based on several criteria.
The following positive factors should prompt particular care and consideration:
veterans and members of the U.S. armed forces;
long-time lawful permanent residents;
minors and elderly individuals;
individuals present in the United States since childhood;
pregnant or nursing women;
victims of domestic violence, trafficking, or other serious crimes;
individuals who suffer from a serious mental or physical disability;
and individuals with serious health conditions.
This sounds exactly like what many of us on the left have been asking the administration to do until we get a Congress that will pass the Dream Act. But once again, it looks like yet another tree in the forest fell without anyone noticing.