On May 2, 2009, President Obama released his full budget providing all the details for the blueprint that Congress approved in the Budget Resolution. From an immigration standpoint, the President's 2010 budget is designed to "strengthen border security and immigration services, as well as efforts to improve the delivery of immigration enforcement by streamlining and modernizing immigration application processes."
Anyone looking for funds to support a pathway to citizenship for the country's existing undocumented immigrants should look elsewhere. There is also little more than a footnote in the Homeland Security budget about helping to make the process easier for current and future legal immigrants. The focus of the President's 2010 budget from an immigration perspective is strictly on security and enforcement.
Department of Homeland Security
Border security and immigration services is a key national security priority. The Homeland Security 2010 budget:
- Funds $45 million for the expansion of an exit pilot at key land ports of entry and other border security priorities.
- Funding of $368 million within existing Customs and Border Protection funds support 20,000 Border Patrol agents protecting nearly 6,000 miles of U.S. borders.
- Provides over $1.4 billion for Immigration and Customs Enforcement programs to ensure that illegal aliens who commit crimes are expeditiously identified and removed from the United States.
- Provides $110 million to continue expansion of E-Verify, an electronic employment eligibility verification system that helps U.S. employers comply with immigration law and ensure that American jobs are available to U.S. citizens and those authorized to work in the U.S.
- Strengthens the delivery of immigration services by streamlining and modernizing immigration application processes.
Department of Justice
The President's 2010 budget for the Justice Department provides the enforcement, confinement and prosecutorial resources necessary to help ensure the Nation’s borders are secure.
The budget includes an additional $286 million for a comprehensive approach to enforcement along our borders that combines law enforcement and prosecutorial component efforts to investigate arrest, detain, and prosecute illegal immigrants and other criminals. The initiative also enhances the Department’s ability to track fugitives from justice and combat gunrunners and illegal drug traffickers.