by Peter Grady –
In what some have said is an attempt to increase his approval ratings among Latino groups, Obama’s administration will permit up to 215,000 immigrants from El Salvador to remain in America due to hardship from an earthquake in 2001.
In announcing the decision, the Department of Homeland Security, in a document titled “Extension of the Designation of El Salvador for Temporary Protected Status and Automatic Extension of Employment Authorization Documentation” the government claims the extension is justified due to current conditions in El Salvador resulting from an earthquake that struck the country in 2001.
DHS says the country is unable to handle the return of any of its nationals living in the U.S. The extension will also enable residents of El Salvador to compete with unemployed Americans for jobs in the country.
The extension of the temporary protected status expires in Sept. 2013.
Critics have said that at a time of high unemployment, now is not the time for the administration to be permitting 215,000 immigrants to compete with Americans for jobs. The December U.S. unemployment numbers were at 8.5 percent making it the 35th consecutive month above 8 percent.