IRLI’s Senior Counsel Mike Hethmon debates UC law professor and former Obama administration advisor

Press Releases

March 4, 2015

The San Francisco Daily Journal, a leading legal newspaper, requested IRLI debate the consequences for immigration law of a case argued recently before the U.S. Supreme Court, Kerry v. Din. The Daily Journal published the debate between IRLI’s Senior Counsel Mike Hethmon and UC law professor and former Obama administration adviser Bill Ong Hing on February 23, the date of the oral argument before the high court. Read the full article here.

IRLI’s Mike Hethmon defended the U.S. Government’s position that the Fifth Amendment liberty interest in marriage of a U.S. citizen does not trump the right of the government to deny the foreign spouse an immigrant visa on terrorism-related grounds, without providing a detailed disclosure of government intelligence relied on to find the asserted connection to terrorism that made the foreign spouse inadmissible. Mr. Hethmon based his argument on Congress’ plenary power over immigration under the U.S. Constitution.

The plenary power of Congress over immigration is an essential element of a sustainable nation-sized republic. It means that the one branch of government that is elected directly by the people to legislate on their behalf has dominance over the executive agencies and the courts when it comes to defining sovereignty. In other words, the constitution allocates to Congress alone the right to make laws determining whom among the world’s 7+ billion human beings will be invited to become an American citizen with all the rights and duties thereto.

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