Immigration Blog

Stop Immigration Processing as Leverage Against Sanctuaries?

By Kent Lundgren, February 3, 2017

Across the country, local governments are declaring themselves so-called "sanctuaries" for deportable aliens. They refuse to cooperate with immigration enforcement. They refuse to honor detainers placed against dangerous aliens in their jails, releasing them instead back to the community rather than turn them over to federal authorities to be removed from the country. They forbid employees to notify immigration authorities of illegal aliens in our midst, even those drawing public benefits to which they are not, by law, entitled. Their law enforcement officers are not allowed to assist federal officers in enforcement actions against illegal aliens, against whom immigration laws may be used to good effect. In short, those entities resist federal exercise of authority over aliens in this country. Read more...

Draft Order Overlooks Largest Source of Payments to Aliens

By David North, February 1, 2017

A reporter called and asked me about two draft executive orders dealing with immigration that had been located by the Washington Post.

Both orders were dated January 23, and were signed by Andrew Bremberg, the new White House policy director. One was a largely useful, if not always very precise, document dealing with the various ways that American workers should be protected from alien competition, which may be discussed in a later posting. Read more...

Here's a Court Case Where Everybody Should Lose

By David North, February 1, 2017

Here's a civil case (involving migration status) in the California state courts where both sides should lose.

One player is an illegal alien with a short-term DACA partial-legalization card. That relates to the Obama-created Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals near-amnesty program.

The other is Wells Fargo, a very big bank. Read more...

Obscure Universities (One Now Closed) Got Far More OPTs than the Ivies

By David North, January 31, 2017

In a previous posting, we suggested that the new president could open up 180,000 jobs for U.S. resident by closing down the Optional Practical Training program, which gives recently graduated foreign students up to three years of legal working status after they finish their studies.

While most of the 180,000 jobs would be reasonably well paid, there are several thousand exceptions as the loosely-managed OPT program gave legal working status to many graduates of questionable institutions.

In the table below, we show some university-specific data on the award of the longest of the OPT working permits; they had 29-month durations at the time. These valuable permits went to alien alums with STEM degrees, i.e., in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Read more...

Journalists Are Like a Box of Chocolates

By Dan Cadman, January 31, 2017

One of the great observations uttered by Forrest Gump in the movie of the same name is that "Life is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you're gonna get."

In my years of dealing with the media, I've come to realize that journalists are like life and that box of chocolates: you just don't know what you'll get. Some are hardworking, some are lazy; some go out of their way to try to be balanced, others skew whatever you say; some are open-minded, and others are hostile before you've ever even opened your mouth. Read more...

Mexico to Apportion Millions to Fight Deportations from the U.S.

By Dan Cadman, January 31, 2017

The government of Mexico will establish a $50 million fund to provide attorneys to aliens fighting deportation in the immigration courts of the United States.

Interesting.

By happenstance, Section 9 of President Trump's executive order on border security directs all cabinet secretaries to put together a list (to be consolidated by the secretary of state) of all direct and indirect foreign aid given to Mexico in the past five years. The consolidated list is to be provided to the president 60 days after the date the executive order was signed (January 25). Read more...

Hiring Freeze Could Hurt Immigration Control

By David Seminara, January 30, 2017

Though it's been overshadowed by subsequent executive orders on various aspects of immigration, President Trump's federal hiring freeze announcement last week may actually encourage illegal immigration at a time when his administration is supposedly trying to enhance border security. The freeze exempts jobs deemed "necessary to meet national security or public safety responsibilities," but it appears that State Department employees who screen visa applications around the world won't be part of this national security exception. Read more...

TPS Program Conflicts with the Pause in Migration from Seven Countries

By David North, January 30, 2017

One of the ironies of the president's ban on the admission of aliens from seven Muslim-majority nations is that it does not seem to touch the ability of illegal aliens from four of those countries, assuming that they are in the United States, from signing up for temporary legal status under the TPS program, and getting permits that would allow them to work legally in America.

So a non-troubling alien with a brand-new visa cannot enter the nation immediately, but someone who has broken our immigration laws successfully is given benefits. Read more...

How Illegal Aliens Can Pay for the Wall

By David North, January 30, 2017

The president has proposed that the big wall at the southern border should be funded by imposing a 20 percent tariff on all imports from Mexico.

Let's think about that a bit.

I totally agree with the overtone of the president's proposal — let's get someone other than American citizens to help fund the wall (and other migration enforcement activities). To some extent a tariff would do that, but it would lead to higher prices to Americans for products made in Mexico.

But the significant by-product of such a policy would be a less prosperous Mexico — and when that happens illegal immigration increases. Read more...

Trump Can Fix H-1B Cesspool by Shortening Visas and Eliminating Renewals

By John Miano, January 30, 2017

There are many things that President Trump can do to tweak the H-1B cesspool. Real reform would have to come from Congress. However, Obama demonstrated that a president may take extreme measures, not even authorized by statute, that many members of Congress approved of.

Fortunately, President Trump does not have to venture outside of the statutes to do a little cleanup to the H-1B problem. I have described other such potential actions previously. Read more...

Politicized Reporting Parrots Party Line on Trump Executive Order

By John Miano, January 30, 2017

My ancestors had a saying: Quos deus vult perdere, prius dementat—whom the gods wish to destroy, they first deprive of reason.

The American news media has been putting on a demonstration of that principle. Read more...

Sanctuary Mayors: Banty Roosters Crowing as a New Day Dawns

By Dan Cadman, January 27, 2017

The Washington Post published an article on January 26 titled "Trump's intervention into policing, voting and immigration sets up showdown with America's largest cities". Several mayors throughout the country are quoted reacting to recent statements by our newly inaugurated president about policing and immigration. Read more...

Trump Can Create 180,000 New Jobs for Americans — by Using that Pen!

By David North, January 26, 2017

President Trump saved several thousand factory jobs by brow-beating some CEOs, but he could also do something much more useful: He could create about 180,000 new jobs for American college grads just by abolishing an obscure bit of the immigration machinery.

Here's a way to help the middle class without dealing with Congress; the president can do it with a stroke of the pen. It would not be a question of saving existing jobs (as in the case of the factory workers) it would lead to the creation of an additional 180,000 jobs for U.S. residents. Good jobs, too. Read more...

Immigration Enforcement Big Bang

By Mark Krikorian, January 26, 2017

"This is a law-enforcement agency."

That's what President Trump told Department of Homeland Security staff Wednesday after he signed two executive orders on immigration enforcement.

The fact that he had to say that – and that the assembled ICE agents, Border Patrol officers, and others heartily applauded – tells you all you need to know about how badly Obama gutted immigration enforcement and torpedoed employee morale. Read more...

"Truthiness" from the Former President on Voter Identification Practices Worldwide

By Dan Cadman, January 26, 2017

A few days ago, John Fund wrote an article for National Review online: Obama's Final Whopper as President".

The gist of the article is this:

He claimed that other countries don't have voter-ID laws, though many do. ...

Remittances from the U.S. Discourage Mexicans from Working

By Kausha Luna, January 25, 2017

Throughout his campaign, President-elect Donald Trump spoke of the possibilities of blocking remittances to Mexico or imposing taxes on these transfers, in order to finance the border wall. In response, President Mexican Peña Nieto recently stated that "millions of Mexican families, principally those of low means, depend on these resources."

Mexico's concerns are underlined by the fact that remittances are the second highest source of income for the country, behind automotive exports. At the global scale, Mexico is the fourth-largest remittance recipient, following India, China, and the Philippines. Regionally, Mexico accounts for over one-third of remittances sent to Latin American (37.9 percent), making it the top recipient. Guatemala falls second in the region, and receives four times less than Mexico (9.2 percent). Read more...

Needlessly Risking Naturalization Integrity with Failed Systems

By Dan Cadman, January 24, 2017

The Department of Homeland Security Office of Inspector General (DHS OIG) has issued a strongly worded report (as such oversight reports go), touching on a potentially perilous and unresolved naturalization issue at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), the immigration benefits adjudicating agency. It is called "Management Alert - U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services' Use of the Electronic Immigration System for Naturalization Benefits Processing", dated January 19. Despite the typically dry bureaucratically title, the report raises significant problems. Read more...

Mexican President Outlines Objectives for Relations with New U.S. Administration

By Kausha Luna, January 24, 2017

On Monday, Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto announced Mexico's top principles and objectives for its relationship with the United States under the new Trump administration. Read more...

The Security Risks when Cities Provide Funds to Fight Deportation

By Dan Cadman, January 24, 2017

Britain, which is attempting to deport radical Islamist preacher Hani al-Sibai, has reportedly over the course of several years provided him with £123,000 in legal aid to fight the effort.

It seems topsy-turvy, in fact downright crazy, doesn't it, that a government would give an alien the funds to fight that same government's effort to remove him? Especially when the alien is a hate-filled zealot who sits like poison in the heart of a western democracy with the avowed intent to subvert it at every turn?

Here in the United States, we can rest secure in the assurance this would not happen, because the law is clear that aliens fighting deportation have the right to an attorney — but only at their own expense. (See Sec. 292 of the Immigration and Nationality Act.) Or can we? Read more...

Obama Administration Tackled Tricky Issue of Transgender Immigration at the 11th Hour

By Dan Cadman, January 24, 2017

Just one day before the inauguration of Donald Trump as president, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) agency charged with adjudication and administration of immigration benefits, issued a policy memorandum: "Revision of Adjudicator's Field Manual Subchapter 10.22 - Change of Gender Designation on Documents Issued by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services". Read more...

Oracle Sued: White Males, Indians Receive Different Kinds of Favoritism

By David North, January 24, 2017

Oracle, the big IT company, has been sued by the U.S. Department of Labor for simultaneously:

  • Discriminating in favor of white males in terms of compensation; and
  • Discriminating in favor of Indians, in terms of hiring.

While I do not doubt for a minute that the charges are appropriate, it is a strange case. It was filed by the Obama administration within 48 hours of the end of its term; its odd mix of charges is something I have never seen before; and the firm's partial reliance on H-1B workers is not even mentioned, although this is the mechanism it uses to hire many Indian workers. Read more...

Is Trump Going to Cancel DACA or Not?

By Mark Krikorian, January 23, 2017

Politicians will always disappoint you. Rich Lowry at National Review tells the story of how, during the few hours he was considering a run for New York City mayor, he found himself already starting to waffle on principle to a potential voter in the elevator. If I were ever so unwise as to run for office, I too would no doubt disappoint those who unwisely voted for me.

So I was fully prepared for the Trump administration to do some things I wouldn't be happy with. But I expected the problems to arise in the area of foreign-worker visas; the president, while running for the nomination, made frequent statements in support of importing foreign workers on visas. (See here and here and here.) Read more...

Remittance Tax to Fund the Wall?

By Dan Cadman, January 23, 2017

The recent news tidbit that President Trump's transition team had asked what money and infrastructure capabilities might be available to begin the promised border wall (or, more probably, high-tech fencing) promptly fed speculation that he would back off the assertion that "Mexico will pay for it." I'm betting my money on the likelihood that the source will be taxes or penalty fees levied on remittances: funds being sent out of our country by aliens, often illegal aliens who send a portion of the wages from their unauthorized employment back to their home countries, usually to support family. Read more...

Here's an Idea: Fly Those Stranded Cubans Home and Pay Them $2K Each

By David North, January 23, 2017

We are reading about Cubans who thought they could use the wet foot-dry foot program to secure legal status in the United States after an illegal entry.

Now they are stranded on the other side of the U.S. border, or on the way to it, thanks to the last-minute decision of the Obama administration to (appropriately) end the earlier policy toward Cuban illegals. Read more...

Will the "Criminal Alien Deportation Enforcement Act" Stall in the Senate?

By Dan Cadman, January 23, 2017

Rep. Brian Babin (R-Texas) has introduced a bill into the House, the "Criminal Alien Deportation Enforcement Act of 2017", that would cut off foreign aid to any country that "den[ies] or unreasonably delay[s] the acceptance of nationals who have been ordered removed from the United States."

One would think it common sense that the United States should not reward other nations when they deliberately throw monkey wrenches into the lawful workings of our deportation processes — but common sense is often in sadly short supply in the nation's capitol. Read more...

EB-5 Immigrants Include a High Percentage of Law-Breakers

By David North, January 19, 2017

Are the beneficiaries of any single provision of the immigration law more likely to be law-breakers (but not necessarily violent ones) than the beneficiaries of other provisions?

Our government does not publish statistics on this point, but for reasons outlined below, the probable answer is that the highest proportion of lawbreakers are in the EB-5 immigrant investor program. Read more...

Insecure IDs Compromise Security at Military Bases

By Dan Cadman, January 19, 2017

Earlier this month military.com published this article: "More State IDs No Longer Accepted at Bases".

The gist of the article is that U.S. military posts have begun to tighten up on the identity documents required before they will permit entry onto their compounds. It is a commonsense security measure given today's unsettled world, and particularly noteworthy in light of efforts by so many terrorist groups to single out serving members of our armed forces and police. For instance, in 2015 ISIS released a list of 100 U.S. armed forces members' names, addresses, and other data, obviously with the hope that would-be jihadists would follow up with attacks against them here in the homeland. Read more...

Will Trump Restore 'Wet Foot-Dry Foot' for Cubans?

By Mark Krikorian, January 18, 2017

Spoiler: Probably not.

Last week, President Obama ended the "wet foot-dry foot" policy for Cuban illegal aliens. Under the old approach, any Cubans apprehended at sea by the Coast Guard were returned to the island (unless they made a credible case for asylum), while those who reached shore were allowed to stay, enabling them to get green cards after one year, per the Cuban Adjustment Act of 1966.

Wet foot-dry foot is itself a narrowing of earlier practice; before President Clinton formulated it in 1995, all Cubans, even those at sea, were simply brought to the U.S. Read more...

Is DHS Sending a Coded Message in the Proposed New EB-5 Regulations?

By David North, January 18, 2017

Once upon a time there were simple decoder rings for kids, used as promotional devices for breakfast cereals. They offered a substitution of a letter for another letter; two kids, each with a ring, could send coded messages to each other, notes that outsiders could not understand.

Is the Department of Homeland Security engaged in a similar maneuver in it latest, largely commendable, proposed reforms of the EB-5 program? Is it sending a hidden message to the EB-5 middlemen, understandable only to them, that the proposed reform looks a lot fiercer than it really is? Read more...

When Is an Alien Admitted?

By Dan Cadman, January 18, 2017

My colleague David North penned a blog post on Monday entitled "Interesting Migrant Screening Suggestion from an Unlikely Source", in which he picked up the idea from a Northern Mariana Islands legislator that one way to figure out if an alien seeking admission is truly a tourist is by gauging the amount of luggage he (or she) is bringing — the larger the amount, the less likely the intent to depart as promised. Read more...