Immigration Blog

What Jeffrey Toobin Ignored in the New Yorker

By Jerry Kammer, August 5, 2015

(Third and final part; see Part One and Part Two.)

In his July 27 article in the New Yorker, Jeffrey Toobin seems to think that what is holding the Flores family in immigration-policy limbo is the hard-hearted stubbornness of congressional Republicans. In the manner described so well by Jonathan Haidt in his landmark book The Righteous Mind, Toobin appears to be blind to much larger realities in our immigration debate, which unfolds against the turbulent background of five decades of mass illegal immigration. Read more...

Update: China City Proposal Drops EB-5 References, Changes Name

By David North, August 4, 2015

In late 2013, we described a proposal to turn a bit of pristine Upstate New York wilderness into a massive, apparently mono-ethnic China City theme park to be funded largely by EB-5 immigrant investors. At the time, we quoted from its then gaudy website (much gold and red and traditional Chinese music) to show the multiple internal contradictions in the proposal and the adverse impacts it would have on the environment. Read more...

The Righteous Mind of the New Yorker's Jeffrey Toobin

By Jerry Kammer, August 4, 2015

(Part two of three; see Part One here.)

Jeffrey Toobin's July 27 article in the New Yorker qualifies him for lifetime membership in what moral psychologist Jonathan Haidt might call the tribal moral society of advocates for illegal immigrants.

Haidt studies how human beings form their moral judgments. He writes that sometimes these judgments lead us to unite around a sacred idea. For liberal advocates of illegal immigration, the sacred idea is that illegal immigrants must be protected and offered the full rights of citizenship. Read more...

Justice Dept.: DACA Amnesty Recipients Not a "Protected Class"

By David North, August 3, 2015

An obscure Justice Department entity, the Office of the Chief Administrative Hearing Officer (OCAHO), has just made the citizen/alien/jobs situation a bit more complicated. It has ruled that a former illegal alien who has secured Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) status may be discriminated against in the job market because of that status (see details after the chart). This adds yet another layer to the citizenship-alienage-employment hierarchy, as this chart shows: Read more...

The New Yorker Looks at Immigration Through the Lens of Liberal Concerns for Illegal Immigrants

By Jerry Kammer, August 3, 2015

One of the most interesting aspects of the national immigration debate is the remarkable asymmetry in the work of many journalists and academics.

The New Yorker's Jeffrey Toobin provides an excellent example in a piece entitled "American Limbo" in the magazine's July 27 edition. Toobin writes with compassion and eloquence as he makes a humanitarian case for federal action to provide legal status to illegal immigrants. But he does next to nothing to acknowledge that there are substantive reasons for opposing such reform in the absence of a commitment that this time the federal government will uphold the enforcement that is the other half of the potential grand bargain. Read more...

Protocol H-1B

By CIS, August 3, 2015

MEMORANDUM

From: Lord Vader, Development Executive, Walt Disney Co.
To: All staff
Date: August 3, 2015
Subject: Implementing Protocol H-1B

I am here to put you back on schedule. In the search for new ways to motivate you, management has decided to replace American technical staff with cheaper H-1B foreign workers. Read more...

Incompetent Fraud Picked Up By USCIS on EB-5 Application

By David North, August 2, 2015

As we all know, USCIS has a low rate of denials in most of its benefit programs.

Sometimes I wonder how much of the fraud it does detect reflects not so much the vigilance of the agency as it does the obvious incompetence of the fraudster.

Routinely the public never sees the denied applications; the only time we get to peek at parts of them is when the alien in question appeals a benefit denial to the Administrative Appeals Office (AAO), the quasi-judicial review body within USCIS. Read more...

Another Weak GAO Unaccompanied Minors Report

By Dan Cadman, July 31, 2015

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) has issued its second audit report dealing with unaccompanied alien minors in a very short span of time. The first report dealt with domestic processing, detention, and resettlement issues – but overlooked any examination of the fiscal expenditures by resettlement agencies of the billions of dollars provided them by the federal government to help accomplish these tasks. It didn't even name them, referring to them instead as Grantees A through E. Neither did it consider the apparent violation of regulatory requirements imposed on federal agencies to audit any organization receiving over $750,000 yearly. Read more...

The Case of the Redheaded Illegal Alien

By David North, July 31, 2015

In a courtroom full of illegal alien teenagers, he was the only one with red hair.

Further, he was the tallest, the thinnest, had the best English by far, and was the only one appearing without a family member or lawyer. He was also the only non-Central American appearing a couple of days ago before one of the immigration judges in the Arlington (Va.) court.

From a policy point of view he had another distinction: he was the only one willing to leave the country voluntarily (at his own expense) and the judge quickly granted him Voluntary Departure, a legal status meaning that there will be no deportation report on his U.S. immigration record. The judge said something to the effect "It's nice to have someone willing to leave on his own." Read more...

Liberalizing Religious Worker Benefits Erodes National Security

By Dan Cadman, July 30, 2015

As my colleague David North has recently noted, the agency responsible for handling immigration benefits, U.S. Immigration and Citizenship Services (USCIS), has decided to liberalize its policies for granting green cards to religious workers through another series of legally dubious interpretations of statute, that amount to a mini-amnesty. One can see the heavy hand of the administration once again pushing against the heads of the bureaucracy to achieve this result. Read more...

Another Immigration-Enforcement Failure – in the First GOP Debate’s Back Yard

By Mark Krikorian, July 29, 2015

As much as they would like to avoid it, events keep conspiring to force the Republican presidential candidates to discuss immigration. First, Kate Steinle’s murder in San Francisco by an illegal alien who’d been released by authorities vindicated the general point (if not the crude delivery) of Donald Trump’s comments on uncontrolled immigration made just a few days earlier. He’s been riding the issue, and a general grassroots disgust with the GOP “leadership,” to a significant lead in the polls. Read more...

Federal Judge Orders an End to the Administration's Detention Shell Game

By Dan Cadman, July 29, 2015

A federal district court judge in California has finally issued a long-awaited decision on detention of alien families and unaccompanied alien minors, ordering the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to explain to her no later than August 3 why those detained should not be released, having found that the conditions of their detention violated a previous settlement in a court case dating back nearly a decade. Read more...

Immigration Reduction Is the Mainstream Position

By Steven A. Camarota, July 28, 2015

Donald Trump's surge in the polls owes much to his willingness to talk about immigration. By focusing on issues such as border enforcement and immigrant crime, he has tapped into the public's unmet desire for a candidate who is genuinely skeptical about mass immigration.

That desire is reflected in polling data that show Americans generally prefer less immigration over more immigration. Here is a sample of polls that ask about immigration as a broad issue, from the aggregator site PollingReport.com: Read more...

Where Are the Required Federal Audits of Refugee and Immigrant Resettlement Agencies?

By Dan Cadman, July 28, 2015

The Department of Justice Office of Inspector General (DOJ OIG) has issued a report on its audit of two grants funded by DOJ's Office on Violence Against Women (OVW) and Office of Victims of Crime (OVC) to a Georgia entity called Tapestri, Inc., which describes its mission as "end[ing] violence and oppression in refugee and immigrant communities", according to the report.

Though required by law, audits of immigrant and refugee-related grants are rare. Read more...

CNN's Amnesty Push Poll Refers To 'Illegal Immigrants Who Have Jobs'

By Jon Feere, July 28, 2015

In yet another flawed poll designed to create the fiction that Americans are super supportive of mass amnesty, CNN has released new findings, as reported by the Washington Post, showing that 56 percent of "Americans support developing a plan to legalize undocumented immigrants over stopping their flow and deporting those already here."

The poll question reads: Read more...

Immigration Prosecutorial Discretion: The Exception that Undoes the Rule of Law

By Dan Cadman, July 27, 2015

Last week, directors Sarah Saldana of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and Leon Rodriguez of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) testified before the Senate Committee on the Judiciary in a hearing focused on the shabby state of immigration law enforcement, and most particularly on sanctuaries that refuse to honor ICE detainers, leading to murders throughout the country. The hearing was called "Oversight of the Administration's Misdirected Immigration Enforcement Policies: Examining the Impact on Public Safety and Honoring the Victims". Several surviving family members also testified at the hearing.

Despite the reference in the name of the hearing to honoring victims, Sens. Schumer and Durban did attending family members the dishonor of choosing to absent themselves during their testimony. Such callousness is as shocking as Rep. Luis Gutierrez's reference to the murder of one of the victims (Kathryn Steinle) as "a little thing". Read more...

NYT Readers Respond to "Anti-Immigrant Binge" Editorial

By Jerry Kammer, July 27, 2015

On Friday, the New York Times published an editorial that sounded an alarm. It was headlined "The Anti-Immigrant Binge in Congress".

It didn't take long for the editorial board, the collective author of the piece and the institutional voice of the Times, to contradict its own headline and prove the fraudulence of the alarm. Here is the editorial's first sentence: "Congress is in danger of taking that most cursed of American political disagreements, the debate over illegal immigration, and dragging it farther toward insanity." (Emphasis added.) Read more...

Law-Breaking Clergymen Now Beneficiaries of Obama Amnesty

By David North, July 27, 2015

Although I am not a religious person, I have long felt that the clergy, and other religious workers, were unlikely to break the law.

I still think that way, even though the administration has managed to put the spotlight on a small group of law-breaking clergy in its efforts to expand amnesty as far as it can. As you can imagine, these illegal aliens will be granted green cards, despite their records. Read more...

Will We Admit the Trojan Horse?

By Dan Cadman, July 27, 2015

An interesting case is shaping up in Australia, which, confronting the reality that a wave of its citizens have been recruited by Islamic State (IS) and other Islamist terror organizations, recently toughened its laws dealing with terrorists, particularly those who are Australian citizens. The case is going to test those laws, and the resolve of the Aussie government, to the limit. Read more...

Hammering Sanctuaries with Lawsuits

By Dan Cadman, July 24, 2015

The astounding number of sanctuary locations identified by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), and revealed by the Center for Immigration Studies could not have been better timed to make a difference for victims and their families all over the nation, coming as it did when attention was focused on the murder of Kathryn Steinle in San Francisco at the hands of an illegal alien. It has forced a public reckoning of a shameful but open secret about how many state and local governments have been free to thumb their noses at federal immigration authorities. Read more...

All the Illegals Get to Stay

By Mark Krikorian, July 23, 2015

The Migration Policy Institute, CIS's opposite number on the high-immigration side, has released a report estimating that fully 87 percent of the illegal population is exempt from immigration law following President Obama's November amnesty decrees. This is a change from the 2010-2011 decrees, under which only 73 percent of illegals enjoyed de facto amnesty. Read more...

Ex-President Bush Spoke (for $200,000) at Event Arranged by EB-5 Suspect

By David North, July 23, 2015

Former President George W. Bush (43) apparently received $200,000 for speaking at a 2012 event in California that was sponsored by a promoter named Bingqing Yang, who has subsequently been charged with fraud in the immigrant investor (EB-5) program.

This can be discerned, indirectly, by (1) reading page 11 of a complaint filed by the Securities and Exchange Commission citing Ms. Yang's involvement with the September 2012 "U.S. China Energy Summit", which mentions a "$200,000 speaking fee for a former President of the United States"; and (2) by looking at a photographs of the event, among them one showing Ms. Yang with a smiling George W. Bush. Read more...

Straight Talk about Immigrant Crime

By Steven A. Camarota, July 23, 2015

When he announced his candidacy for president in mid-June, Donald Trump made the provocative assertion that Mexican immigrants are “bringing crime.” The comment gained greater resonance when, two weeks after Trump’s speech, Kathryn Steinle was shot and killed in San Francisco by an illegal alien from Mexico. The alien, Francisco Sanchez, had been in local police custody back in April, and federal officials intended to deport him. But Sanchez was instead released due to San Francisco’s “sanctuary city” policy.

In response to the resulting outcry, some mainstream media outlets correctly noted that, although good data are hard to come by, the overall immigrant crime rate does not appear to be especially high. But then advocates of mass immigration went much further, making wild claims that Mexican immigrants have a miniscule crime rate that somehow even suppresses native crime. Only an uninformed rabble-rouser would worry about criminals crossing our borders, according to immigration enthusiasts. Read more...

Is Alien Investor Interest in the EB-5 Program Ebbing?

By David North, July 23, 2015

The figure below shows the pattern of filings over the last 24 months for the EB-5 (immigrant investor) program run by USCIS. Most of the investors are from China.

The top line shows the number of initial filings (Form I-526) per quarter; this is for the temporary resident card that comes with a $500,000 investment in an USCIS-designated (but not guaranteed) project. The lower line indicates the number of follow-on filings (Form I-829), in which the alien investor seeks to convert the temporary (two-year) permit into a permanent green card. Read more...

Administration Damages Yet Another Immigration Enforcement Tool

By David North, July 22, 2015

One of the best tools used to uncover fraud in the H-1B and L-1 nonimmigrant worker programs has just been hurt by yet another effort by the administration to undercut the enforcement of immigrant law.

This tool is an unannounced visit by a DHS official who will (a) make sure that the entity exists as stated on an application, and (b) look at documentation such as pay slips. Read more...

GAO Examines UAC Processing and Housing Procedures, but Misses the Fiscal Mark

By Dan Cadman, July 21, 2015

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) issued a report on July 15 called "Unaccompanied Alien Minors: Actions Needed to Ensure Children Receive Required Care in DHS Custody".

I suspect advocacy groups will make a great deal of noise over it because of the "inconsistencies" it reveals in processing by Customs and Border Protection (CBP) inspectors and Border Patrol agents. Read more...

Murder Uncovers Illegal Aliens in the Mushroom Business

By David North, July 21, 2015

Here's a helpful memorandum to those thinking about hiring illegal aliens:

  • If you are going to hire illegal aliens, see to it that they do not murder each other.
  • If the feds catch you with a bunch of illegals on your payroll, don't re-hire them under other names.

A big mushroom farm did not follow those simple rules and now has to forfeit more than $1 million in ill-gotten gains. Read more...

Congress's Proposed Cure for Sanctuary Cities Must Not Be Worse Than the Disease

By Dan Cadman, July 20, 2015

The public all over the nation is expressing uniform and vociferous outrage over the needless recent murder of Kate Steinle in San Francisco due to that city-county's sanctuary policies. The backlash shows growing recognition that the problem is not limited to San Francisco, but is in fact nationwide, as revealed by my colleague Jessica Vaughan.

The most common method of obstructing immigration enforcement is by refusing to honor detainers filed against aliens arrested for criminal offenses whom federal authorities wish to take into custody for deportation when state criminal justice proceedings are over. This refusal to honor detainers, along with other sanctuary obstacles, like rules prohibiting exchanges of information, is a problem that has been festering for years and yet few executive branch officials or legislators have shown much willingness to grapple with it. Read more...

New Zealand Also Has an Immigration Lottery

By David North, July 17, 2015

This is a little awkward for me to write. As one who has spent a lot of time looking at immigration policies in other democracies, as well as the United States, I had long believed that ours was the only nation on Earth crazy enough to have an immigration lottery.

The so-called Diversity Visas are dealt out to aliens winning our lottery at the rate of 50,000 a year. None of the newcomers needs a skill or a tie to the United States -- they simply have to come from a nation that does not send us lots of immigrants, have a high school diploma or the equivalent, and be lucky. It is a policy that is hard to defend.

I have now discovered, through the most obscure of sources, that sensible little New Zealand has a similar policy. This chagrins me because I was not aware of it, despite my having spent a year (decades before the policy was developed) as a Fulbright Scholar in Wellington, the capital of that nation. Read more...

Reflections on "Domestic" Terror in Chattanooga

By Dan Cadman, July 16, 2015

The train wreck that passes for federal immigration and nationality policy has once again collided into reality with bloody consequences.

The fact is that it happens every day, but most of the instances rarely get more than local coverage. Yet in the last few weeks the entire nation has been riveted by two egregious instances of the disastrous and fatal consequences of the government's flawed policies. Read more...