Right Hooks

DOJ Levies Fines for Respecting Rule of Law

Citizenship requirement lands Denver Sheriff Department in hot water.

Jordan Candler · Nov. 28, 2016

While Lois Lerner and her acolytes at the Internal Revenue Service got away with unlawfully blocking the tax-free applications of conservative groups — which the agency is still doing, by the way — Obama’s Justice Department is busy punishing those who actually take Rule of Law seriously.

The latest example comes from Colorado, where the Denver Sheriff Department was handed “a $10,000 fine after it required applications for deputy sheriff jobs to be U.S. citizens when hiring from the beginning of 2015 through March 2016,” the Washington Examiner says. To remedy the situation, “The department will … have to go through old applications to find applicants who were eliminated because of their citizenship status and reconsider them for future jobs” and “will also have to train its human resources staff on the Immigration and Nationality Act’s anti-discrimination provisions.”

This from the administration that selectively enforces immigration law.

Heritage Foundation fellow Hans von Spakovsky outlines the reasons the statute likely isn’t applicable in this case. Also, don’t miss the irony here. The IRS, to name just one example, spent years circumventing the law in order to subjugate Tea Party groups. But when it comes to the DOJ, its behavior is hardly different; the agency is selectively enforcing rules based entirely on whether it benefits the Left. Spakovsky writes, “Given the importance of the job done by law enforcement officers throughout all levels of government to protect the public from those who would harm them … requiring citizenship seems like a basic, commonsense qualification.”

“The federal government certainly thinks so,” he adds, “because it does not apply this statute to itself. If you want to be a special agent for the Federal Bureau of Investigation, which often works closely with local law enforcement, including sheriff’s departments like Denver’s, the FBI website specifically says that you ‘must be a United States citizen.’ The same is true of the U.S. Secret Service, which routinely discriminates against noncitizens in a manner that no doubt horrifies the DOJ’s Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices.” You know what else requires U.S. citizenship? You guessed it — the DOJ.

Federal agencies are hardly immune to corruption. They never have been. But when the Justice Department bends the rules — for example, by refusing to prosecute IRS bureaucrats and by enforcing rules from which it exempts itself — the administration can hardly be considered “the most transparent in history.” It’s a fast track to tyranny.

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