Immigration Blog

The Damaging Civic Consequences of Illegal Migration, Pt. 2: The 'Better Lives' Argument

By Stanley Renshon, July 15, 2014

The essential core of real immigration reform is enforcement.

That is not because of some harsh "anti-immigrant" sentiment. Rather, it is because real enforcement is very pro-immigration. Why? Because the wholesale violation of immigration laws and procedures and the failure of federal, state, and local authorities to be consistent in their efforts to enforce the law undermine public support for immigration. Read more...

Reflections on Poverty, Violence, and Gangs

By Dan Cadman, July 15, 2014

When pressed, both the administration and immigrant advocacy groups have proclaimed loudly and repeatedly that the basis for the ongoing border surge (which includes at least some percentage of unaccompanied minors) is "poverty, violence, and gangs" in the primary source countries of Guatemala, El Salvador, and Honduras. Read more...

Central American Press on the Border Crisis

By Jerry Kammer, July 14, 2014

La Prensa Grafica (El Salvador)

Little girls in braids, boys with cowboy hats and tennis shoes — with their parents they came to the court of immigration judge Frank Travieso in Los Angeles to learn how long they could stay in the United States. ... He told them to come back in February.

This scene could become more frequent because the immigration courts, already overwhelmed with their work backlog, are preparing to receive the wave of Central American immigrants who have crossed the border from Mexico in recent months.

The Damaging Civic Consequences of Illegal Migration, Pt. 1

By Stanley Renshon, July 14, 2014

Illegal migration is at the core of America's immigration problems. And it is likely to become an even more divisive issue as the surge of Central American children, adolescents, and women continue to turn themselves in at the border and are dispersed throughout the United States without much fear of being sent back to their home countries. Read more...

Justice Department Unit Gets a Minor Immigration Issue Right

By David North, July 11, 2014

If you were an employer would you have to think twice in this situation?

You need someone to work with a very small team on a project that will take at least one year to complete.

There is a really able, willing candidate for the job — but there is a problem. Three months from now she will (pick any one of the following) be: Read more...

The Myth of Political Cost-Free Immigration, Pt. 3

By Stanley Renshon, July 11, 2014

One of the reasons that the American immigration system needs reform so badly is that it has been changed part-by-part over time without great attention to its overall design or consequences. And when the obvious unintended problems crop up, or the intended fixes worsen other problems, calls are heard for "comprehensive reform" that attempts to fix every problem by giving more of what every connected group favors. Such was the rationale of the failed 2007 "comprehensive reform" and the stalled and almost certainly dead 2013 Senate bill. Read more...

New York Times Op-Ed All Wrong on EB-5

By David North, July 11, 2014

I was both depressed and intrigued by the sloppy thinking, and writing, that marked today's op-ed piece on immigration in the New York Times signed by Sheldon Adelson, Warren Buffett, and Bill Gates. Read more...

Excerpts from Central American Newspapers on the U.S. Border Crisis

By Jerry Kammer, July 10, 2014

El Heraldo (Honduras)

The United States Secretary of Homeland Security said he will continue to deport Central American children, closing the door on the calls of governments in the region that the youth be allowed to stay in the U.S. "We are going to act in accordance with the applicable laws" of the United States, which provide that persons arrested by the Border Patrol as they attempt to enter illegally will be returned "regardless of their age," Johnson said at a press conference at the end of a two-day visit to Guatemala.

Lawsuits, Op-Eds, and the Nature of this Administration's Executive Actions

By Dan Cadman, July 10, 2014

House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), in a follow-up to his formal announcement that the House would vote on authorizing a lawsuit against the president for executive overreach, has now published an op-ed on CNN.com, presumably to explain his reasons for the lawsuit. Read more...

Single Mothers Flee Poverty on the Roof of the Train Called 'The Beast'

By Jerry Kammer, July 10, 2014

The young mother smiled shyly as she responded to the Univision reporter's question about where she was headed.

"To the United States," she said. And why was she going there. "Necessity," she answered. Read more...

Border Crisis or Not, U.S. Continues to Operate a Rolling Amnesty

By David North, July 10, 2014

What the president never mentions, and may get lost in the understandable focus on the border crisis, is the fact that the United States runs a series of continuing amnesties all the time, year-round, year after year.

About half of the new green cards issued each year do not go to new arrivals, they go to aliens already in the county in either nonimmigrant or illegal status; it is a process called "adjustment of status". There are about half a million of these adjustments a year. Read more...

Henry Cuellar, Morning Joe, and the President's Katrina Moment

By Jerry Kammer, July 9, 2014

I hope that this doesn't become President Obama's Katrina moment. I'm sure that President Bush thought the same thing, that he could just look at everything from up in the sky, and then he owned it after for a long time. So I hope this doesn't become the Katrina moment for President Obama, saying that he doesn't need to come to the border. He should come down.

Munoz's Folly, White House Fiction

By Jerry Kammer, July 9, 2014

Cecilia Munoz, the former vice-president of the National Council of La Raza who now works in the White House as director of the Domestic Policy Council, is in charge of the Obama administration's response to the mounting crisis on the Texas border. In an attempt to put a positive spin on the chaos, she has become a serial fictionalist. She's engaged in a game of politically expedient make-believe. Read more...

Political Fundraisers and No-Shows at the Border
For once, the president appears tone-deaf and blind to the "optics" and "atmospherics" of a photo-op

By Dan Cadman, July 9, 2014
For once, the president appears tone-deaf and blind to the "optics" and "atmospherics" of a photo-op

Print and television news media report that President Obama will visit Texas to do a little fundraising but has no plans to visit the border area while there, notwithstanding the "humanitarian crisis" he declared after delayed administration acknowledgement of the tsunami of human beings crossing the Rio Grande Valley from Mexico into the United States. Read more...

The Myth of Political Cost-Free Immigration, Pt. 2

By Stanley Renshon, July 9, 2014

America has always placed a large bet on immigration. It is clear that immigrants migrate to the United States for freedom and opportunity and in doing so they pursue their self-interest.

The bet we have placed, largely successfully in the past, is that we could leverage that self-interest into genuine attachment over time. That meant that they would not only work to improve their educational and economic circumstances, but would develop a real emotional attachment and identification with the their new home. In short, the bet was that immigrants would become, over time, Americans. Read more...

The TRACs in the Snow Almost Never Lead to Denaturalization

By Dan Cadman, July 8, 2014

As is its wont, Syracuse University's Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC) has published another of those short but interesting reports that it produces from time to time.

This one, "Recent Trends in Naturalization Application Lawsuits", provides statistical data relating to lawsuits filed in United States district courts from federal fiscal year (FFY) 2008 through 2014 to date (meaning the first eight months of this FFY). Read more...

NewsHour Asks "Why Are They Coming?"

By Jerry Kammer, July 8, 2014

Last night on the PBS "NewsHour", anchor Judy Woodruff led a discussion about the reasons for the dramatic exodus of tens of thousands of Central Americans to the United States. She heard competing views from the Center for Immigration Studies' Jessica Vaughan and Marshall Fitz of the Center for American Progress.

Fitz took the position that "the real reason people are leaving those countries is because of the violence and the conditions that they're experiencing in their home country." Read more...

Massachusetts' Taxpayers Not Paying the Bill — Yet

By CIS, July 8, 2014

The following is by Malcolm Richards, who is an intern at CIS this summer.

On Monday a federal appeals court ruled that young illegal aliens, “dreamers,” are entitled to driver’s licenses and has ordered Arizona to issue them. This judicial activism circumvents the normal legislative process where state legislatures decide who can and cannot obtain licenses. In late June, lawmakers in Massachusetts voted against advancing a bill to provide illegal aliens with driver’s licenses, making it one of the states where the legislature has listened to state residents. Read more...

The Myth of Political Cost-Free Immigration, Pt. 1

By Stanley Renshon, July 8, 2014

The myth of economic cost-free immigration has its political counterpart.

It is the view that massively increasing immigration by tens of millions of new legal immigrants, as proposed in the Senate bill and by its advocates, is simply and unequivocally positive for the United States, its culture, and democracy. To assume or suggest anything less is to immediately open yourself to the charge that you are "anti-immigrant" or worse. Read more...

Two Scenes from Univision on the Border Crisis

By Jerry Kammer, July 7, 2014

As someone who tries to follow how the story of illegal immigration is presented in Spanish-language media, I found two recent scenes on Univision news programs to be especially interesting.

The first provided a rare and fleeting acknowledgement of the fact that many Latinos, including some illegal immigrants, are astonished at how easy it can be to enter the United States illegally. The other, far more common on Univision, presented a lengthy diatribe by a popular Mexican-American singer who denounced resistance to illegal immigration as anti-Latino racism. Read more...

The Myth of Economic Cost-Free Immigration, Pt. 2

By Stanley Renshon, July 7, 2014

The hope that more and more immigration will solve America's economic problems is doomed to disappoint those who tout it and those who believe that is possible. It may add dollars to our GNP, but it comes with substantial costs, both economic and political.

It is simply untrue that there are enormous numbers of Steve Jobs out there waiting to get their green cards. Jobs was quite unique in many ways. Read more...

Influx of Illegal Immigrants Puts Americans' Health at Risk

By CIS, July 7, 2014

The following is by Hannah Nochera, who is an intern at CIS this summer.

At least two minors from Central America who illegally entered the United States have been diagnosed with the swine flu, also known as the H1N1 virus. This announcement comes after the media informed us of an outbreak of scabies that went undetected until a number of Border Patrol officers were infected. Due to the highly contagious and dangerous nature of H1N1, thousands of vaccinations are being distributed to detainees where the infected minors are based. It is still unclear exactly how many people have been infected with scabies but we do know that the infection is spreading. Read more...

Let's Reverse the Queue at the Border and Hold Hearings in Spanish

By David North, July 7, 2014

Let's reverse the queue at the southern border among the Central American arrivals and push the most recent of them into immediate hearings, which should lead, routinely, to their rapid return to their home countries.

This is one of a clutch of suggestions I have to try to slow, if not stop, the current influx of families and some unaccompanied children — mostly male teenagers — from Central America. Read more...

Obama Administration: No 'Unaccompanied Alien Children' at Border

By Marguerite Telford, July 6, 2014

Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has banned the use of the term "unaccompanied alien children" (UAC). Those familiar with the administration's manipulation of language to subtly influence or stop a debate will not be surprised.

According to an internal June 4 ICE e-mail message distributed widely to managers in headquarters and field offices, personnel were urged to refrain from using the official acronym UAC, in favor of "unaccompanied child". The e-mail reads: Read more...

The Myth of Economic Cost-Free Immigration, Pt. 1

By Stanley Renshon, July 4, 2014

A lie is usually defined as a willful misrepresentation made with the intent to deceive. Read more...

A Reason for Speedy Deportations — It Helps Aliens to Readjust Back Home

By David North, July 3, 2014

Bearing in mind published speculation that many Central Americans now flooding into South Texas will be years in deportation hearings, I recently read about a Lebanese national who has been an illegal in the United States for 20 years.

The Sixth Circuit in Abdelghani v. Holder ruled for the alien's removal after 11 years of court proceedings and two decades of illegal presence. I worry about somewhat similar delays with the current group of Central Americans, and pressures from the Left to keep them in this country. Read more...

Unsecured Border: Interview with a National Border Patrol Council Representative

By Jon Feere, July 3, 2014

Read and view our entire Unsecured Border Series

Along the Rio Grande near Mission, Texas, Albert Spratte, the Sergeant-at-Arms of the National Border Patrol Council Local 3307, speaks with the Center for Immigration Studies. Spratte points out a Mexican park across the river which he explains often is the launch point of jet skiers who work as human smugglers. It’s one of the most highly-trafficked areas for people crossing illegally into the United States. In the video, Spratte notes the times of day and types of people who attempt to cross illegally, as jet skiers travel up and down the river, as if on cue. Read more...

Secrecy Permeates Housing Facility for Alien Youth

By Marguerite Telford, July 2, 2014

Yesterday Rep. Jim Bridenstine (R-Okla.) attempted to visit a Health and Human Services (HHS) housing facility occupied by an estimated 1,200 illegal-alien youths relocated from the Texas border. The congressman was denied entry to this facility, located in Ft. Sill. He was told by the HHS official in charge that he would have to make an appointment, which could be scheduled for him in three weeks if he emailed the appropriate person. His phone call was not returned. Read more...

Americans Say NO to Illegal Aliens Being Housed in Their Communities

By Marguerite Telford, July 2, 2014

Tens of thousands of illegal aliens are being transported across the country to stay at facilities for unspecified periods of time, at the taxpayers' expense. An estimated two-thirds of these aliens are adults with children, and one-third are unaccompanied minors, mostly males between the ages of 14-17. Americans, angered by the government's unwillingness to stop the flow, are losing patience, as seen by the protests in California. Read more...

Unsecured Border: Interview with Brooks Co. Chief Deputy Sheriff

By Jerry Kammer, July 2, 2014

Read and view our entire Unsecured Border Series

Brooks County, Texas is mostly a vast semi-desert range-land and sits 65 miles north of the Mexican border. But Chief Deputy Sheriff Benny Martinez says 80-85 percent of his force’s time is spent on problems related to the border, from illegal immigration to drug smuggling. Read more...