Immigration Blog

"Temporary" Doesn’t Mean What You Think It Means

By Mark Krikorian, May 22, 2017

DHS Secretary John Kelly announced today that "Temporary Protected Status" for Haitians who were here illegally or on a visitor visa at the time of the 2010 earthquake would be extended yet again, for six months. In his statement he went to great pains to emphasize that this was really, for sure – probably; okay, well, maybe – the final extension:

This six-month extension should allow Haitian TPS recipients living in the United States time to attain travel documents and make other necessary arrangements for their ultimate departure from the United States, and should also provide the Haitian government with the time it needs to prepare for the future repatriation of all current TPS recipients.

No TPS grant to a large group of people has ever been allowed to end, so with high hope for the future, no prediction in regard to this is ventured. Read more...

Leveling the Playing Field
How the Davis-Oliver Act keeps ICE agents from being outgunned

By Andrew R. Arthur, May 22, 2017
How the Davis-Oliver Act keeps ICE agents from being outgunned

On Thursday, May 18, the House Judiciary Committee began the mark-up of the "Michael Davis, Jr. and Danny Oliver in Honor of State and Local Law Enforcement Act" (Davis-Oliver) (H.R. 2431), which was introduced by Rep. Raul Labrador of Idaho. As Rep. Labrador, the Vice Chairman of the Immigration and Border Security Subcommittee, explained it in his press release introducing that bill:

The bill improves the enforcement of immigration laws to enhance public safety, adds tools to crack down on dangerous sanctuary city policies and contains needed changes to protect American communities from unlawful immigrants who commit crimes in the United States.

New Study Reveals 96% Negative Coverage for Trump Immigration Policies

By David Seminara, May 22, 2017

A telling new study from Harvard University's Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics, and Public Policy reveals that liberal media bias is more pronounced in immigration coverage than in any other issue. The study found that during the Trump administration's first 100 days the overall tone of coverage at major media news outlets (CNN, NBC, CBS, FOX, NYT, WaPo, BBC, etc) was 80 percent negative. Read more...

"Punishing" Apprehended Illegal Aliens with Alternatives to Detention?

By Dan Cadman, May 22, 2017

Conservative Review has published an article, "Weak border bill threatens to undermine GOP's wall promises". The bill in question is being put together for introduction in both chambers of Congress by Sen. John Cornyn and Rep. Mike McCaul respectively. As one can gather from the title of CR's article, it is not necessarily a bill those who believe in responsible immigration control and enforcement can look toward with any pleasure. Read more...

Another Group of Exploited Alien Workers Is Heard From – the Au Pairs

By David North, May 19, 2017

It's bad enough when foreign workers are exploited in bunches, as they are through farmworker visas and (at a higher wage level) the H-1B program, but think of the exploitation possibilities when a one young person from another country is working as the lone servant in an American household.

She has little contact outside the family that employs her and generally knows little about our (not very strong) worker protection laws, but does know that if she upsets the family, she will be put on the first plane back to the homeland.

Welcome to the State Department's au pair program!

Draining the Swamp, or Wading in Ever Deeper?

By Dan Cadman, May 18, 2017

Even as border crossings have plummeted and interior arrests have soared since inauguration of the president — due, no doubt, both to his tough campaign talk and his unshackling of federal immigration agents through executive orders — there are warning signs that we may be sliding back toward the Washington business-as-usual mentality of unacknowledged virtually open borders where legal immigration is concerned. Read more...

Return of the ENLIST Act: A Trojan Horse for Amnesty

By Dan Cadman, May 18, 2017

On January 3, 2017, various members of the House of Representatives cosponsored HR 60, the "Encourage New Legalized Immigrants to Start Training (ENLIST) Act".

The reference to "new legalized immigrants" in the title is a red herring. In fact, the bill would allow illegal aliens to enlist in the military, at which point they would be entitled to amnesty through legalization of status, as is evident by the plain language in Section 2 of the bill.

There are a couple of intertwined rumors going around our capital city relating to this bill: First, that the Trump White House may be considering it favorably; and second, that its authors may attempt to insert it into the sprawling Pentagon appropriations bill, the annual National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), even though it is nominally against congressional rules to use appropriations bills to pass substantive legislative proposals — something that regularly gets overlooked as a matter of convenience when legislators so choose. Read more...

Loaded Questions and False Assumptions
The Ninth Circuit reviews the executive order on foreign terrorist entry

By Andrew R. Arthur, May 17, 2017
The Ninth Circuit reviews the executive order on foreign terrorist entry

On Monday, May 15, a three-judge panel of the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit heard arguments in the government's appeal of a preliminary injunction issued by a Hawaii federal district court judge of sections 2 and 6 of Executive Order 13,780, "Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States". As Fox News reported, the panel was "skeptical" of the government's position. The case shows the dangers that ensue when courts fail to see the whole picture and rely on false assumptions. Read more...

Andrew Sullivan Discusses Social and Political Upheaval in the U.S.

By Jerry Kammer, May 16, 2017

We who work at the Center for Immigration Studies attempt to make the case for reasonable immigration limits. Some of us, motivated by concerns for the labor market prospects of Americans and permanent residents, consider ourselves to be liberal restrictionists. Others, concerned with maintaining social cohesion and the rule of law, identify as conservatives. (There is, of course, some overlap.) Read more...

Man with 15 Previous Deportations Nearly Kills Boy, Mainstream Media Shrugs

By David Seminara, May 15, 2017

If Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) had a loyalty rewards program, surely Constantino Banda-Acosta would be a platinum member. Banda-Acosta, a 38-year-old citizen of Mexico, has been deported from the United States at least 15 times according to the San Diego Union Tribune. Last week, while driving drunk, he allegedly blew through a stop sign and smashed into another vehicle, seriously injuring Lennox Lake, a six-year-old boy who was on his way home from a family trip to Disneyland. Banda-Acosta didn't stop or seek help, and the poor little boy had to undergo two surgeries at a Children's Hospital. (Donate to his GoFundMe page here.) Read more...

Unsubstantiated Voting Fraud?
The president establishes a commission on election integrity

By Andrew R. Arthur, May 12, 2017
The president establishes a commission on election integrity

On Thursday, May 11, President Trump announced the establishment of a commission on election integrity. The commission: "[W]ill review claims of improper registrations and voting, fraudulent registrations and voter suppression. ... Members will provide the president with a report in 2018 and may issue recommendations to the states."

Almost instantaneously, the president's critics attacked the commission, and its Vice Chairman, Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach. Read more...

The Nobel Prize Standard

By Andrew R. Arthur, May 12, 2017

The phrase "deeds not words" has long been associated with Alice Paul, suffragette, political activist, and one of the founders of the National Women's Party. The Washington Post, which describes the phrase as Ms. Paul's "battle cry", reports it is "an allusion to Paul's preference for attention-getting protest stunts, such as hurtling rocks at windowpanes, in the name of equal rights." Read more...

Reflecting on Alien Prisoner Drug Offender Sentence Reductions

By Dan Cadman, May 12, 2017

Several times previously I've spoken about "criminal justice reform" as it relates to alien felons and drug offenders, and in less-than-glowing terms (see here, here, and here) because it seemed then, and seems to me now, that where alien criminals are concerned, the "reforms" are just one more way our government proves it isn't serious about border control — because many of the aliens benefiting from such reforms, whether via legislation or amendment of sentencing guidelines to provide for retroactive downward departures, are cross-border violators and drug traffickers who got caught moving their packages of death into our country. Read more...

HSI Returns to the Streets to Target Gangs

By Jessica Vaughan, May 11, 2017

In a press conference today, ICE announced the results of a six-week operation targeting transnational gangs, led by Homeland Security Investigations (HSI, a division of ICE). Some of these gangs have rebounded in recent years, taking advantage of lax border security to grow their ranks, and this operation indicates renewed attention to the problem and, most notably, a welcome return to assertive use of immigration enforcement authorities as an effective weapon against this scourge. Read more...

Here's a Switch: The Dangers Migrants Face Leaving the U.S. for Canada

By David North, May 11, 2017

We have heard for years about aliens seeking to illegally enter the United States from the south dying in the heat of the desert along the southern border.

This past winter we began to hear about the exact opposite — aliens with dubious or no credentials fleeing from the United States to Canada, and risking freezing to death in the process. Read more...

Can A New Border Security and Immigration Enforcement Bill Pass into Law?

By Dan Cadman, May 11, 2017

Several Republican members of Congress are reported to be working with the Trump White House to craft a border security and interior immigration enforcement bill.

According to the story:

The legislation is still in flux, though copies of an early draft have floated around Washington. The focus will be strengthening defenses at the border and enforcement of immigration laws in the interior of the US, and will likely include a mix of upping resources and staffing at the border as well as tweaking some immigration law and authorities to clear the way for more aggressive immigration enforcement, according to sources familiar with the direction.

Donald Trump, Immigration Booster

By Mark Krikorian, May 11, 2017

Whoever conducted the recent Economist interview with the president seems to be the first reporter ever to ask him whether he wants to reduce legal immigration. The answer is no:

Do you want to curb legal immigration?
Oh sure, you know, I want to stop illegal immigration.

And what about legal immigration? Do you want to cut the number of immigrants?
Oh legal, no, no, no. I want people to come into the country legally. No, legally? No. I want people to come in legally. But I want people to come in on merit. I want to go to a merit-based system. Actually two countries that have very strong systems are Australia and Canada. And I like those systems very much, they’re very strong, they're very good, I like them very much. We’re going to a much more merit-based system. But I absolutely want talented people coming in, I want people that are going to love our country coming in, I want people that are going to contribute to our country coming in. We want a provision at the right time, we want people that are coming in and will commit to not getting ... not receiving any form of subsidy to live in our country for at least a five-year period.

DHS Officials Testify on "Preventing Terrorists from Acquiring U.S. Visas"

By Dan Cadman, May 10, 2017

Three senior officials within the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) recently presented unified testimony for a House of Representatives hearing titled "Preventing Terrorists from Acquiring U.S. Visas". Read more...

A Platform for Change?
Connecting the unemployed with jobs through Facebook

By Andrew R. Arthur, May 10, 2017
Connecting the unemployed with jobs through Facebook

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg has long been active in the "immigration reform" movement. Four years ago, he helped found, an organization whose mission "is to mobilize the tech community to support policies that keep the American Dream achievable in the 21st century." As the group's website explains: " has focused on immigration reform first because America's broken system prevents far too many talented immigrants from fully contributing to our communities and our economy." Read more...

Texas's New Anti-Sanctuary Law Draws Predictable Reactions from Open-Borders Advocates

By Dan Cadman, May 10, 2017

On May 7, Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed into law SB (Senate Bill) 4, a statute forbidding agencies of the state or its political subdivisions from acting as illegal alien sanctuaries. The statute, which comes into effect on September 1, goes so far as to criminalize behavior by officials such as police chiefs and sheriffs who refuse to fully cooperate with federal immigration enforcement efforts by providing information and honoring detainers filed against aliens arrested for criminal offenses. It also establishes civil fines of up to $25,000 daily for towns, cities, and counties that violate the anti-sanctuary law. Read more...

Mexico Regrets Texas Sanctuary City Ban

By Kausha Luna, May 10, 2017

On Monday, Mexico's Ministry of Foreign Affairs published a press release lamenting the enactment of Texas Senate Bill 4 (SB 4).

Signed by Governor Greg Abbott, SB 4 bans sanctuary jurisdictions in the state of Texas. Read more...

State-Based Visas: Unwise, Unworkable, and Constitutionally Dubious

By Dan Cadman, May 9, 2017

The libertarian Cato Institute recently hosted an event titled "State Based Visas: A Federalism Approach to the Immigration Impasse", featuring two members of Congress, Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wisc.) and Rep. Ken Buck (R-Colo.). The lead-in on the webpage has this to say:

The idea of regional or state-based visas is not a new one. Indeed, Canada and Australia have each implemented successful variations that provide some valuable lessons and hint at the major economic benefits possible for us in the United States. Adoption of a state-based visa program in America would permit our 50 state governments to craft rules for work visa programs that are more adaptable to local economic conditions than the present one-size-fits-all system run from Washington, D.C. While state governors and state and federal lawmakers are warming to the idea, all that stands in the way here is congressional approval.

Sounds grand, doesn't it? What you won't find among the paeans to this "federalist" concept are some of the many issues and problems lurking in the bushes surrounding it. Read more...

Comey: 15% of Terror Cases Came as Refugees

By Mark Krikorian, May 8, 2017

The narrative about refugee resettlement spun by the invite-the-world crowd is that refugees pose no threat to Americans. To pick only the first link to pop up in Google, see this from VOA: "UNHCR: Refugees Pose No Threat to US National Security". This is because they are "rigorously vetted", "the most thoroughly vetted of all people entering our nation".

The problem is that vetting is only as good as the information available. And we simply don’t have access to information that would successfully identify potential bad guys. In my testimony on this a while back I quoted FBI Director Comey: Read more...

Trump Sibling-in-Law Plays Princeling in China

By David North, May 8, 2017

Nicole Meyer (younger sister of President Trump's son-in-law, Jared Kushner) may have been obtuse about the American optics in Beijing on Saturday, but she was spot-on with the Chinese culture when she pitched a crowd of rich Chinese about her family's latest EB-5 investment in Jersey City, N.J., right across the Hudson from mid-town Manhattan. Read more...

In a Time of Criminal Crisis, Long Island UAC Placements on Track for Four-Year High

By Joseph J. Kolb, May 8, 2017

Despite dwindling numbers of unaccompanied minors (UACs) showing up at the southwest border, the placement of UACs by the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) on MS-13 crime-plagued Long Island is on track to top a four-year high. Read more...

The Fifth of May — an American Holiday

By Andrew R. Arthur, May 5, 2017

Happy Cinco de Mayo!

An interesting aspect of my morning news every year on the fifth of May is the festive manner in which the broadcasters note that the day that will be celebrated by revelers at their local Mexican/Tex-Mex restaurant with drink specials and free salsa. On the Baltimore morning news this year, they actually listed some of the half-price taco and $2 Tecate deals that are available to the happy hour crowd.

News reports never remark, however, on the importance of this day to American freedom, and the defeat of the Confederacy in our Civil War. Read more...

Two Sets of Rules in Mobtown
Baltimore's prosecutor announces more lenient treatment for alien criminals

By Andrew R. Arthur, May 5, 2017
Baltimore's prosecutor announces more lenient treatment for alien criminals

In a recent opinion piece I wrote for the Baltimore Sun, I discussed a recent decision by the Baltimore State’s Attorney’s Office to employ different standards when prosecuting certain criminals: a stricter standard the office will follow when it prosecutes citizens, and a more lenient standard that it will follow when dealing with aliens.

This decision is reflected in a memorandum issued on April 27, 2017 (and disclosed the next day by the Sun), in which Marilyn Mosby’s staff "instructed prosecutors to think twice before charging illegal immigrants with minor, non-violent crimes in response to stepped up immigration enforcement by the Trump administration." Read more...

Long Island Police Arrest Three MS-13 Members, All in the U.S. Illegally

By Joseph J. Kolb, May 5, 2017

Gang investigators for the Nassau County, N.Y., police department on Long Island arrested three MS-13 suspects this week in connection with a recent attempted murder. Two of the suspects are brothers and all three are in the United States illegally.

At a press conference Wednesday, Nassau County Police Chief Kevin Smith said Fidel Hernandez, 23; his older brother, Jose, 26; and Miguel Urias Arguenta, 18, were taken into custody Tuesday and charged with attempted murder.

According to Smith, on Sunday the Hernandez brothers and Arguenta allegedly attacked a man with a machete and gun, but did not kill him. They are charged with attempted murder. The Hernandez brothers are also implicated in a machete attack in January where the victim also survived. Read more...

Births to Unmarried Mothers by Nativity and Education

By Steven A. Camarota, May 5, 2017

Immigrants account for a large share of births in the United States. Almost one in four births (22.6 percent) in 2015 were to foreign-born mothers. As recently as 1990 it was just 7.9 percent. As a share of all births, the figure for 2015 may be the in highest American history. In 1910, the last peak in immigration, immigrants accounted for 21.9 percent of births. The tables below examine births by the education, race, and marital status of mothers based on 2015 data from the National Center for Health Statistics. The data reflect what is shown on certifications as reported by the states to the National Center for Health Statistics. Read more...

Driver's Licenses Make It Easy for Law Enforcement to Identify Illegal Aliens

By Ronald W. Mortensen, May 3, 2017

The Trump administration's aggressive enforcement of immigration laws is causing illegal aliens and their political backers to have second thoughts about some of their past victories.

Illegal aliens and their supporters now realize that well over a million illegal aliens are carrying driver's licences issued by 12 states and the District of Columbia; see below for a breakdown of the rules in each of these jurisdictions. As required by the federal REAL ID Act of 2005, these licenses clearly identify the holder as being unlawfully in the United States. In addition, these states and the District of Columbia now have large databases with the personal identifying information, addresses, and phone numbers of large numbers of illegal aliens. Read more...