Vail Daily letter: Are we a nation of laws? |

Vail Daily letter: Are we a nation of laws?

Has anyone ever heard of the McCarran-Walter Act of 1952?

President Donald Trump suspended immigration from several Muslim countries. The criticism ranged from un-American, dumb, stupid, reckless, dangerous, racist and unconstitutional. The media, congressmen and senators, President Obama, Hillary Clinton all denounced him. But did he only follow existing law?

Yes! As Gomer Pyle would say, “Well, surprise, surprise.” It seems that the selective immigration ban is already a law and has been previously applied.

Known as the McCarran-Walter Act, the immigration and Nationality Act of 1952 allows for the “suspension of entry or imposition of restrictions by the president, whenever the president finds that the entry of aliens or of any class of aliens into the United States would be detrimental to the interests of the United States. The president, by proclamation, and for such a period as he shall deem necessary, may suspend the entry of all aliens or any class of aliens as immigrants or non-immigrants or impose any restrictions on the entry of aliens he may deem to be appropriate.”

And who do you suppose last utilized this process? Why, it was Democrat President Jimmy Carter in 1979 to keep Iranians out of the United States. But he actually did more. He made all Iranian students, already in the United States, check in with the government. And then he deported a bunch of them. Seven thousand were found in violation of their visas, and a total of 15,000 were forced to leave the U.S.A. in 1979. Not a whisper of criticism.

So what say you now?

Bernie Schwartz