The White House administration spent close to $18 billion on the enforcement of immigration during 2012. That figure was substantially more than it spent combined, on all of the other law enforcement agencies. The information was taken from a report that was published on Monday by a research group known as Migration Policy Institute based in Washington.
Huge amounts of resources are used annually for monitoring foreigners that have arrived in the country and to first detaining and then deporting thousands of illegal immigrants. Because of this, immigration control is the governments highest priority in criminal law enforcement, concluded the report.
In the last few years, the report found, the two immigration law enforcement agencies that fall under Homeland Security have referred more court cases for prosecution than all the combine law enforcement agencies in the Department of Justice, which includes the DEA, FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Those agencies combined to spend over $14 billion during 2012.
President Obama pledged after being re-elected, to overhaul immigration. The last time Congress considered overhauling immigration polices was in 1986 including granting legal status to illegal immigrants. Last year, the spending on immigration was 15 times higher than it was back in 1986.
The report shows lawmakers, mainly Washington Republicans, who have long argued that authorities must do more in strengthening the law enforcement before they can consider the legalization of what are estimated to be more than 11 million undocumented immigrants in the U.S.