Mark Krikorian's blog

Paying Illegal Immigrants to Go Home

By Mark Krikorian, November 11, 2010

Gallup reports that 18 percent of Hispanic immigrants in the United States want to emigrate to another country, a third of them to Mexico and the rest to other Latin American countries or Canada or Europe. They are more likely than other Hispanic immigrants to be poor and not speak English well — i.e., almost certainly disproportionately illegal aliens, though the survey didn't ask about legal status. Read more...

Lies, Damn Lies, and Statistics

By Mark Krikorian, November 4, 2010

The amnesty crowd is hawking a new fable — that a massive margin among Hispanics saved Harry Reid:

Longtime immigration advocate Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-Ill.) credited Hispanics Wednesday for keeping Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) in the Senate.

"Latino citizens responded to Majority Leader Harry Reid's aggressive pursuit of immigration reform by voting for him in overwhelming numbers," he said in a statement. "They were clearly the difference in his victory."

Big Prison — Call Me!

By Mark Krikorian, October 29, 2010

I haven't jumped on the anti-NPR bandwagon following Juan Williams' firing — yes, it was wrong, and yes, there should be no government funding of news operations, but I like NPR and I and CIS have always been treated fairly, both by reporters and talk shows, at both the national level and regional stations. Read more...

New Hispanic Poll on Immigration

By Mark Krikorian, October 28, 2010

The Pew Hispanic Center has a new poll out of Hispanic attitudes related to immigration. Maybe most interesting is this: Read more...

Wonder of Wonders

By Mark Krikorian, October 26, 2010

Tevi Troy wrote in a recent Politico piece on Republican trends among Jewish voters at the state level: "Jewish voters, like other voters, are worried about the economy, the deficit, and health care." Add immigration to that list — an American Jewish Committee survey has found that a majority of American Jews support the Arizona immigration law, 52 to 46. Read more...

Bloggingheads.tv Debate on the DREAM Act

By Mark Krikorian, October 8, 2010

Yesterday I participated in a Bloggingheads.tv debate with Simone Campbell, Executive Director of NETWORK. We debated the DREAM Act and other general immigration issues. View the video below. Read more...

If Pew Says It, It Must Be True!

By Mark Krikorian, September 2, 2010

A slew of news stories today about a new report from the Pew Hispanic Center estimating that as of March 2009, the illegal population had dropped to 11.1 million. Pew, though institutionally inclined toward amnesty and mass immigration, does honest work, and this is no exception. But many of the press reports are treating this as momentous, previously unknown news when, in fact, it's already been reported — twice. Read more...

Price of Victory

By Mark Krikorian, August 27, 2010

Linda Chavez's new column laments John McCain's flip-flopping on immigration:

McCain's capitulation to what he once called, in my presence, "a strong nativist tendency" fooled no one. It simply besmirched his honor and dignity.

I don't believe that he’s changed either, though after nearly 30 sanctimonious, bullying years in Congress I don't think "honor" and "dignity" are relevant descriptions for him any longer. She also writes: Read more...

Let 'Em Loose Bruce, or Line-Flushing in Immigration Court

By Mark Krikorian, August 25, 2010

The latest installment in the Obama administration's gutting of immigration enforcement was reported today in the Houston Chronicle. As reporter Susan Carroll wrote:

The Department of Homeland Security is systematically reviewing thousands of pending immigration cases and moving to dismiss those filed against suspected illegal immigrants who have no serious criminal records, according to several sources familiar with the efforts.

Children of Diplomats

By Mark Krikorian, August 13, 2010

There's a wrinkle of the birthright citizenship debate that I think is telling. One thing that everyone accepts is that "subject to the jurisdiction thereof" excludes kids born here to representatives of foreign governments. Read more...

Looking for a Cheap Date

By Mark Krikorian, August 6, 2010

The Democrats seem to actually think that Senate passage of a bill providing for increased immigration enforcement personnel, two UAVs, and some other stuff is all it takes to convince people that the border is secure. As Politico described it:

Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, Schumer and McCaskill told reporters in a conference call Friday that the bill paves the way for consideration of a comprehensive reform bill.

Lawsuit Lessons

By Mark Krikorian, July 28, 2010

One broader lesson people need to take away from the legal wrangling over the Arizona law: Any enforcement provisions of "comprehensive immigration reform" that Congress might pass would be tied up in the courts for years. As my colleague Steve Camarota wrote recently: Read more...

Nice Town You Got There, Shame If Anything Happened to It

By Mark Krikorian, July 28, 2010

The other local immigration law that was set to go into effect tomorrow is in the town of Fremont, Nebraska. The ordinance was approved by voters last month and would have prohibited the hiring of, or renting to, illegal aliens.

But the town council there voted last night to suspend the measure because of the prohibitive costs of fighting the ACLU and MALDEF in court: Read more...

In for the Long Haul

By Mark Krikorian, July 28, 2010

It's no surprise that key parts of the Arizona immigration law were just suspended by Judge Bolton, pending the full trial. Assuming the state doesn't give up, which it won't, everyone understood this would take several years and reach the Supreme Court. It’s a stupid way to make policy, but with ACLU lawyers (both those inside and those outside the government) fanatically committed to open borders, there's no alternative.

Is There Any Enforcement They Support?

By Mark Krikorian, July 27, 2010

The Secure Communities program is intended to make systematic and universal the identification of illegal aliens in police custody — not people pulled over for speeding or broken taillights but those actually booked and fingerprinted. The whole point of the program, politically, is to move away from deporting "ordinary" illegal aliens (i.e., those guilty only of tax crimes, identity-fraud crimes, employment crimes, etc.) and focus only on illegals who have committed "real" crimes. Read more...

Attrition Before Enforcement!

By Mark Krikorian, July 27, 2010

The Arizona immigration law is set to go into effect Thursday (unless a judge decides it shouldn't), but it's working already:

The two women are among scores of illegal immigrant families across Phoenix hauling the contents of their homes into the yard this weekend as they rush to sell up and get out before the state law takes effect on Thursday.

Clowns to the Left of Me, Jokers to the Right

By Mark Krikorian, July 22, 2010

I participated a panel on the Arizona law, and immigration more generally, at the libertarian Cato Institute yesterday; the video of the event is now up, assuming you want to watch all 82 minutes of it. Much of the discussion was the usual stuff, but two things stood out.

First, one of the panelists, Cato's Tim Lynch, spoke about how the Arizona law will lead to false arrests and showed an excerpt from this video: Read more...

Immigration Myths

By Mark Krikorian, July 22, 2010

There's too much wrong-headed commentary about immigration to bother with most of it, but the op-ed in today's Washington Post by the last two heads of the INS is worth comment, both because of the venue and the particular myths its authors purvey. Read more...

There's Nothing as Permanent as a Temporary Refugee

By Mark Krikorian, July 13, 2010

Well, imagine that! The "Temporary" Protected Status of certain illegal aliens from El Salvador, Honduras, and Nicaragua was just extended, again, for another 18 months. Read more...

Cutting Immigration Is Pro-Marriage

By Mark Krikorian, July 13, 2010

At least that's the conclusion of one economic historian:

America's settling down: How Better Jobs and Falling Immigration led to a Rise in Marriage, 1880 – 1930
Tomas Cvrcek
NBER Working Paper No. 16161

Immigration and Child Poverty

By Mark Krikorian, July 12, 2010

A few days ago, Reihan Salam at National Review Online questioned whether David Frum was correct that one of the reasons we have a higher rate of child poverty than other developed countries is immigration. As Reihan wrote, "I personally think our immigration policy should change. But I don't think child poverty rates are the reason." Read more...

Lots of Nothing

By Mark Krikorian, July 1, 2010

So, I figured the president’s major address on immigration might reveal something important. I’m at Cub Scout camp out in western Virginia, but I had to go to the laundromat anyway, so I watched the stream of the address using their free wi-fi while the clothes spun and tumbled. And what was the news that came out of it?

Nothing. Bupkes. Zilch. Read more...

A New Recruit to the Enforcement-First Caucus

By Mark Krikorian, June 29, 2010

Bill McGurn of the Wall Street Journal has come around to enforcement-first perspective; his column can be summed up by its subtitle: "Secure the border and a healthy debate might follow."

McGurn opens his column well enough, but after condemning "those who effectively oppose real enforcement of any immigration law," he resorts to a false equivalence: Read more...

Amnesty by Fiat?

By Mark Krikorian, June 23, 2010

A group of senators sent a letter to the president this week to warn him against something that's apparently being tossed around inside the administration: granting an amnesty unilaterally, without input from Congress. Apparently, this plan would apply only to visa overstayers and other illegals who've applied for green cards as a delaying tactic knowing they won't qualify — but that would mean maybe 5 million people. Read more...

Gone to Texas

By Mark Krikorian, June 18, 2010

Fox reports that 17 members of the Afghan military have gone missing over the past two years from Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio. While this is an obvious security vulnerability because "Each Afghan was issued a Department of Defense Common Access Card, an identification card used to gain access to secure military installations," I suspect it's more likely that they're washing dishes in the back of a cousin's restaurant in San Francisco or Northern Virginia. Read more...

Plug the Damn Hole

By Mark Krikorian, June 18, 2010

A column in yesterday's Globe and Mail on the "honor-killing" of Aqsa Parvez in Canada by her Pakistani immigrant family gets to the policy point too many want to avoid:

Decades ago, illiterate Italians also immigrated to Canada, bringing with them a harsh, patriarchal culture where religion dominated all. But they didn't marry cousins imported fresh from the old country. And so they began to raise their children differently.

One Slice at a Time on Amnesty?

By Mark Krikorian, June 10, 2010

As the name suggests, supporters of “comprehensive immigration reform” have long resisted the mere suggestion that they should try a piecemeal approach and pursue smaller, less politically toxic amnesties. About a year ago, I was on a panel with Frank Sharry of America’s Voice, one of the chief pro-amnesty activists, and Esther Olavarria, the policy director for DHS who used to be Kennedy’s immigration person. Read more...

'Temporary' Status Means Never Having to Go Home

By Mark Krikorian, May 5, 2010

Well, knock me over with a feather! The "Temporary" Protected Status for a total of about 70,000 Honduran and Nicaraguan illegal aliens, which was set to expire in July, has been extended til January of 2012. You know when they were first given this "temporary" amnesty? Almost 11 years ago. Only in Washington, where $1 billion is chump change and terrorism is a "man-caused disaster," would 11 years be considered temporary. Read more...

Ignoring Their Betters

By Mark Krikorian, May 5, 2010

Despite (or maybe because of) the sustained elite attack on the Arizona law, public support is holding steady. A new poll from Investors Business Daily finds 2 to 1 support for the bill nationwide, about the same as the NYT/CBS poll (combining the 51 percent who said it was about right and the 9 percent who said it didn't go far enough) and Rasmussen. Read more...

The Perfect Is the Enemy of the Good

By Mark Krikorian, May 3, 2010

The mass-immigration crowd's latest argument against the E-Verify system is that it's just not tough enough, dammit! A piece in the Washington Post over the weekend argued that I specifically, and restrictionists in general, back E-Verify precisely because it doesn't work perfectly — the intent being, if I can divine the true nature of the conspiracy, to prevent amnesty by preventing a solution to illegal immigration. Or, as the authors write: Read more...