Update, April 4, 11:02 am:

An April 4 article in Salon.com warns that the Trump administration's attempt to pressure immigration judges into rushing their decisions and not giving immigrants time to obtain lawyers or prepare their cases properly, in order to speed up deportations in support of the president's racial immigration agenda, may backfire by clogging up the federal courts with even more immigration-related litigation, as was the case when G.W. Bush's AG, John Ashcroft, tried a similar strategy in the wake of 9/11. See Amanda Marcotte's April 4 Salon.com article:

Jeff Sessions' new "quotas" for immigration judges: Pathway to mass deportation?


My original comment follows:

While the president continues to rant on Twitter about "dumb" and "ridiculous" immigration laws - presumably those which give asylum seekers at the US border the right to a hearing in the United States before being turned back - there is a new development with dangerous implications for the integrity and independence of the immigration court system, and for due process and the rule of law in general in America. Jeff Sessions' Department of Justice, which is responsible for that system, has, for the first time, imposed a case resolution quota for immigration judges of 700 per year, amounting to about 3 cases a day for each judge.

This means that finishing cases quickly will take priority over deciding them fairly and with full respect for due process of law, and that the courts will risk being turned into an assembly line to rubber-stamp Donald Trump's mass deportation agenda.

The American Bar Association Journal reports that Immigration Judge A. Ashley Tabaddor, the president of the National Association of Immigration Judges, has criticized the quotas as:

"an egregious example of the conflict of interests of having the immigration court in a law enforcement agency."

She also warned that immigration judges may begin to make decisions based on concern about keeping their jobs, rather than based on what is legally correct, and that the DOJ has now:

"...compromised the integrity of the court."


Also, CNN quotes Paul Schmidt, a retired longtime Immigration Judge, as saying that immigration judges will get the message from the Justice Department and that Sessions' efforts to tighten immigration law speak volumes, According to Schmidt:

"Evaluating someone's performance on the number of cases they close is obviously going to have some effect on the substance of the decisions...You know the boss wants removal orders, not grants - all these things have to have some sort of effect."


Will A.G. Jeff Sessions, who has shown himself eager carry out Trump's agenda in a number of areas, including mass deportation of Latino and other immigrants of color in order (as many observers maintain) to appease Trump over the president's rage and threats against Sessions for failing to "protect" Trump with regard Mueller's Russia investigations (see the AP's February 28 report):


next set quotas for how many immigrants Immigration Judges must order deported every year in order to keep their jobs as judges?

Trump's Justice Department appears to be headed in that direction, in which the due process of law and right to fundamental fairness in court on which America's democracy depends risk being thrown out in Donald Trump's mad rush to deport as many brown-skinned immigrants as possible, as quickly as possible.
Roger Algase is a New York immigration lawyer and a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School. For more than 30 years, Roger has been helping mainly skilled and professional immigrants from diverse parts of the world obtain work visas and green cards though employment and family sponsorship.

Roger's email address is algaselex@gmail.com