Asylum Limit Imperiled

Press Releases

March 14, 2019

IRLI defends administration’s response to asylum abuse crisis

WASHINGTON – The Immigration Reform Law Institute has filed a friend-of-the-court brief in DC federal district court where activist groups are suing the Trump Administration over its policy of channeling the influx of asylum seekers through ports of entry. Under this policy, asylum seekers who enter the country unlawfully, and in violation of President Trump’s proclamation sealing the border, are not eligible to be granted asylum. Instead, they are to receive expedited removal to Mexico, and must reenter the U.S., if at all, through a port of entry.

IRLI points out in its brief that the asylum statute expressly provides the Attorney General with authority to limit asylum eligibility for reasons of national security. IRLI argues that there is no basis for the activists’ claim that the asylum statute gives special exemption from such limits to asylum seekers who enter the country unlawfully.

“The vast majority of those crossing our border illegally and claiming asylum are not legitimate asylum seekers at all,” said Dale L. Wilcox, executive director and general counsel of IRLI. “They are gaming the system. In many cases, they are even sex traffickers, or are in gangs. But when they claim asylum and pass initial screening, they get to disappear into the United States, where most never show up for their scheduled hearings. The administration’s attempt to limit this wholesale abuse of the system, which turns the asylum process into a conduit for out-of-control illegal immigration, is perfectly lawful.”

The case is O.A. v. Trump, 1:18-cv-2718 (D.D.C.).

For additional information, contact: Brian Lonergan • 202-232-5590 • [email protected]

Get Connected

Sign up for our email newsletter to stay up to date with immigration reform in the United States.

Attorneys United for a Secure America (AUSA) is a non-partisan affiliation of talented attorneys dedicated to pursuing cases that serve the national interest when it comes to immigration law.

If you are interested in joining the network, visit the AUSA website.