The Magic Words: Credible Fear


Those who try to enter the United States illegally are very resourceful in selecting their route. They climb over fences, scramble through underground tunnels, swim through rivers, and claw their way through the heat of the Arizona desert. Now, some illegals have learned two magic words that let them in legally. They can walk up to a border agent and say: “credible fear.” Those may be the only words they can speak in English, but they are sufficient to unlock the gates of our borders. Credible fear applications have increased from 5,000 to 36,000, with the biggest numbers coming from El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala. If a credible fear application passes an initial screening interview, the applicant is allowed to live and work in the U.S. until his case is resolved. That might take years.

The House Judiciary Committee recently held a hearing to examine reports that the asylum system is being exploited by drug traffickers. One woman, who came in the U.S. on an asylum claim, was caught three months later at a Border Patrol checkpoint with more than $1 million worth of cocaine. Congressman Jason Chaffetz accused some asylum seekers of “gaming the system” to “get free education and free healthcare.” Such a loose system, of course, invites fraud. Last year in New York, 26 people including six attorneys were indicted on charges that they manufactured asylum claims and coached Chinese clients on how to lie to immigration officials. In 2012, 10,000 people from China were granted asylum. According to Congressman Bob Goodlatte, “dangerous criminals are gaming the system by claiming they have a ‘credible fear’ of persecution when often they’ve been the perpetrators of violence themselves.” If we are talking about immigration reform, the top of the list should be the refugee racket that brings in people we do not want.

Contributing Editor, Phyllis Schlafly, is the Founder and President of Eagle Forum, a national radio show host, and a best-selling author.

Used with the permission of Eagle Forum.

The Moral Liberal recommends: Phyllis Schlafly and Grassroots Conservatism: A Woman’s Crusade (Politics and Society in Twentieth-Century America)