Speed Reads

immigration crackdown

To speed up deportations, the Justice Department will set new quotas for immigration judges

The Department of Justice has told federal immigration judges that in order to receive a "satisfactory" job performance evaluation, they must clear 700 cases a year, The Wall Street Journal reports.

The new quotas were announced in a memo sent out on Friday, and will go into effect when the next fiscal year starts on Oct. 1. There are more than 600,000 cases pending before the Executive Office of Immigration Review, and Attorney General Jeff Sessions wants to clear the backlog in order to speed up deportations. A Justice Department spokesman said that over the past five years, the average judge completed 678 cases, although some judges were able to clear as many as 1,500 cases annually.

A. Ashley Tabaddor, an immigration judge and president of the National Association of Immigration Judges, told the Journal that speeding through cases is "a recipe for disaster. You are going to, at minimum, impact the perception of the integrity of the court." U.S. immigration courts are part of the executive branch, not the judicial branch, as John Oliver explained on Sunday's Last Week Tonight.