Who says the Bush Administration is incompetent?

DHS is doing its bit to help the Republicans win the 2008 elections; it’s dragging its feet on approving citizenship applications.

They’ve very skilfully arranged that hundreds of thousands of citizenship applications filed last summer won’t be approved in time for the new citizens to vote. Remeber, this crew makes no actual distinction between campaigning and governing: everything is geared toward winning the next election.

Fortunately, Congress isn’t helpless on this one. Stick some extra funding on the next appropriation thorough, and put a deadline of 1 year on all applications: unless DHS gives a specific reason by that time why the application should be rejected or held for further investigation, it’s automatically accepted. (Note that immigration fraud is grounds for revocation of citizenship, so a false citizenship award isn’t irrevocable.)

Footnote Of course, none of the loudmouth politicians making such a fuss about “illegal” immigration are going to lift a finger to help legal immigrants become citizens.

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: Markarkleiman-at-gmail.com