Immigration Blog

Overseas Distribution of Social Security Recipients Reflects Old Patterns

By David North, July 14, 2016

More than 613,000 Social Security recipients have retired overseas, usually after working for decades in the United States.

Their distribution is a reflection of former – not current – migration patterns as we see in this, another of our notes on emigration from the United States. (View an earlier posting about some U.S. students getting part of their education abroad). Read more...

An Empty Victory at the Third Circuit Court of Appeals

By Dan Cadman, July 14, 2016

This is a blog about one of those good news/bad news kinds of cases. The good news: the government won. The bad news: the alien probably still doesn't get deported. There are a number of cautionary lessons in the case, Bassam Saliba v. the United States, which emanates out of the federal third circuit court of appeals. Read more...

New Legal Tool, Qui Tam, is used in Florida EB-5 Case

By David North, July 13, 2016

A new legal tool has been unveiled against a Florida EB-5 user by a once-fired employee of the lumber mill in question.

The former employee has filed a Qui Tam case in federal court seeking to recover losses suffered by the federal government. To the best of my knowledge this is the first use of this legal tool in the EB-5 business. Read more...

A Call for "Responsible Nationalism" and Attention to Those Who are Falling Through the Cracks

By Jerry Kammer, July 13, 2016

The populist revolts in the United States and Great Britain against unchecked immigration and free trade are forcing a rethinking of the ideology of post-national cosmopolitans. David Brooks, while dismayed at Donald Trump’s candidacy, acknowledges that Trump has brought attention to the fact that “people across America have been falling through the cracks.” Read more...

Rich EB-5 Investors Get Undue Attention From USCIS Ombudsman Office

By David North, July 12, 2016

Here’s a government agency with millions of clients, mostly low-income, mostly with limited to no English.

The agency rarely allows interviews between those seeking benefits and decision-makers. It routinely relies on forms, written in English, when making its decisions.

The agency (USCIS) has established a special office (that of the omsbudsman) to help the low-income, marginally literate portion of the migrant population it serves to wend its way through these obstacles, a perfectly appropriate move. Read more...

On Refugees, National Security, and Myth-Making Solons

By Dan Cadman, July 12, 2016

Often, when I have a scheduled meeting or appointment with an authority figure—a doctor, a lawyer, an academic or the like—the tiny irreverent guy who lives in the back of my head reminds me that half of them will, as a statistical matter, have been below the fiftieth percentile in their university or postgraduate studies class. Read more...

Court Rules that Another Vermont EB-5 Project was Corrupt

By David North, July 12, 2016

A Vermont state court has ruled that another failed EB-5 project in the state was corrupt, not just a financial disaster.

This is in addition to the big failure and multi-million dollar swindle in the Jay Peak ski lodge and at an associated medical laboratory that has caused so much controversy and press coverage, as we noted earlier. Read more...

On Borders, Fences, Political Pandering and Party Turnabouts

By Dan Cadman, July 11, 2016

The Democratic party has drafted its 2016 platform for the presidential race. It is, of course, a draft and will remain that way until endorsed (or amended) by the convention delegates, but there's little reason to think it will substantially change. Read more...

Pow! Bam! Sock! Vermonters Again Collect Swiftly in Migration Fraud Case

By David North, July 11, 2016

Maybe it’s in the milk they drink, but yet again we have a case of Vermonters moving swiftly to collect cash for prior immigration violations.

We reported recently that the State of Vermont had sued Raymond James, the brokerage firm, for its part in the recently revealed EB-5 disaster, and had collected, in a matter of a few weeks, nearly $6 million of the $24 million or so that had been lost. Read more...

Ecuador: No Airlift for U.S.-bound Cubans

By Kausha Luna, July 8, 2016

During a press conference on Tuesday, the Foreign Minister of Ecuador said that his country will not participate in the illegal migration of Cubans by providing them with an airlift to Mexico.

The press conference took place after the government of Ecuador and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees signed a cooperation agreement concerning the treatment of applications for refugee status in the country. Read more...

White House Looks to Private Sector to Increase Refugee Admissions Outside the Resettlement Program
An Attempt to Circumvent Numerical Caps

By Nayla Rush, July 6, 2016
An Attempt to Circumvent Numerical Caps

With the ongoing Syrian refugee crisis, the Obama administration is more than ever committed to helping refugees, whether in their host countries in the Middle East or in the United States. U.S. humanitarian assistance to the Syrian crisis reached $5.1 billion this year. President Obama has already pledged to bring into the United States 10,000 Syrian refugees via the refugee resettlement program this fiscal year (which ends September 30).

The administration is also looking for "alternative pathways" to admit more Syrian refugees outside the refugee resettlement program, to meet the target set by the UN High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) of providing at least 480,000 places worldwide through resettlement and private sponsorships (such as employment contracts, student scholarships etc.) to Syrian refugees over three years (2016-2018). Read more...

Would You Buy a North Korean Used Car from This EB-5 Promoter?

By David North, July 6, 2016

There are plenty of bizarre business notions in the EB-5 program, but this one wins the Oscar for creativity.

The idea: Let's use $630,000 of an EB-5 investor's money to buy and ship 100 used cars from North Korea to an about-to-be-formed southern California car dealership. (Given North Korea's poverty, perhaps used cars are cheap there.) Read more...

Study Reveals Education Decline Across Immigrant Generations

By John Wahala, July 6, 2016

Deeply ingrained in American mythology is the notion that succeeding generations of immigrants always do better than their forefathers. This belief is predicated on the success that descendants of last century's great wave of immigration achieved. While researchers have pointed out that that success was often slow and the result of specific historical forces, most importantly a 40-year period of significantly reduced immigration, it has nonetheless become romanticized and held up as a model for all future immigrant trajectories. It worked in the past, say advocates for open-ended immigration, so there is no reason to be concerned. This sort of thinking can quickly turn into ideology that has no use for facts. Read more...

Legislature Does Right Thing on Alien Marriage Issue – WaPo Misses It

By David North, July 5, 2016

The Virginia Legislature took an important step toward reducing green card-producing, abusive marriages of young female citizens — and the Washington Post missed the migration point completely in a July 3 article about the legislation.

Encouraged by a tiny Virginia lobbying group, both parties in the GOP-controlled state legislature set the minimum age for marriage at 18 under most circumstances, and at 16 with a court order. Previously the minimum age was "13 or younger ... if she had parental consent and was pregnant", according to the Post. Read more...

Will New FOIA Amendments Make it "Easier, Faster, Cheaper" to Obtain Immigration Data?

By Dan Cadman, July 5, 2016

Here's a hoot: Barack Obama, the chief executive of our least transparent administration in decades — if not in the history of the country — has just signed into law a revision of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) that he says will make it "easier, faster, and cheaper" to obtain information from the federal government.

Sounds good, but after seven-plus years of this administration, I'm not buying that any more than I would a "good used car from a previous single owner in West Virginia". Read more...

Two Prominent Latinos Take Sharply Different Approaches to Trump

By Jerry Kammer, July 5, 2016

On Sunday, Univision newsman Jorge Ramos pressed his case against Donald Trump during interviews with two prominent Latinos.

First the Rev. Samuel Rodriguez, president of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference, pushed back against Ramos, making it clear that he wanted to have a dialogue with the presumptive Republican nominee. Then Lionel Sosa, the Texas-based marketing executive who helped Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, and George W. Bush appeal to Latino voters, echoed Ramos's disgust with Trump. Both men spoke with Ramos for the "Al Punto" program. Read more...

Vermont Quickly Recovers $6 million in EB-5 losses; South Dakota Dawdles

By David North, July 5, 2016

Only weeks after the disclosure of some $25 million (or more) in EB-5 losses, the state of Vermont has already recovered a quarter of that figure. South Dakota, whose EB-5 losses probably exceed $100 million, incurred years ago, has barely started its tiny, seemingly reluctant efforts to recover a mere $1 million or so of its losses.

Both states are (or were) Department of Homeland Security-designated regional centers in the immigrant investor program, which provides a family-sized set of green cards to aliens placing half-million-dollar investments in DHS-approved, but not guaranteed, projects. Both states found that multi-millions of investor funds (and smaller amounts of state funds) had been swindled, wasted, or lost. And the states have the powers of both regional centers and of state governments to begin the process of recovering at least some of those funds. Read more...

Nepotism Reigns in Labor Department Appellate Body

By David North, July 4, 2016

Tired of waiting for those family preferences in the immigration system?

Is your brother willing to work in the kitchen of the family's restaurant business?

If the answers are both yes, just ask the Department of Labor to issue a decision leading to a green card for that relative, and his immigration problems are solved — and another resident of this country is denied a job. Read more...

Front Loading the Phrasing to Obtain Desired Poll Results

By Dan Cadman, July 4, 2016

The Immigration Reading list compiled and e-mailed weekly by the Center often makes for some interesting stuff for those like myself who like to dig down into the weeds on the subject of immigration, legal and otherwise, in all of its multiple facets.

Last week was no exception. It contained no less than four polls on the interrelated subjects of presidential politics, national security, and whether or not Americans agree with halting the flow of refugees from Syria and other parts of the Middle East: Read more...

Kate Steinle Day

By Mark Krikorian, July 1, 2016

One year ago today, Kate Steinle was killed in San Francisco by a previously deported felon protected by that city's sanctuary policies. In the interim, neither Congress nor the administration has done anything to rein in these acts of nullification by states and localities against federal immigration law. Read more...

New Poll: Enforcement Types Aren't all Xenophobes!

By David Seminara, July 1, 2016

In the wake of the UK's Brexit vote and amidst the onslaught of Trump-related immigration stories in the press, I'm ready for a long summer break from the news. I normally listen to NPR for at least an hour per day, read a newspaper or two, and troll Twitter for more time than I care to admit to consume even more news. But this routine has become untenable.

My sons gave me a record player for Father's Day, and I've been using it a lot lately because I cannot stand to hear or read one more story asserting that Americans and Brits who believe in the rule of law and want some form of immigration enforcement are racists, xenophobes, soccer hooligans, Nazis attempting to relive Kristallnacht and so on. Read more...

Sanctuary City Policies Must End

By Jon Feere, July 1, 2016

One year ago today, Kate Steinle was killed in the sanctuary city of San Francisco, allegedly by a five-times deported illegal alien from Mexico with seven felony convictions on his record.

It is well-past time that sanctuary city policies come to an end, yet today there remain over 300 jurisdictions throughout the United States that shield illegal aliens from federal law enforcement. They're listed on my organization's interactive map. Despite public opposition to sanctuary policies, only weeks ago San Francisco largely upheld their dangerous policy to the applause of open-border advocates. Read more...

The Non-Departed: 925,000 Aliens Ordered Removed Are Still Here

By Jessica Vaughan, June 30, 2016

Data obtained by the Senate Judiciary Committee following a hearing on the collapse of immigration enforcement reveals that a very large number of illegal aliens in the country have already had due process and been ordered removed, but are still living here in defiance of that order. As of a year ago, there were more than 925,000 aliens who had been ordered removed, but who had not departed (known as ICE's "Post Final Order Docket"). About 20 percent of the non-departed aliens have at least one criminal conviction. Read more...

Questionable Circumstances, Dubious Reports, and Specious Rewards Surround the San Bernardino Terror Attack

By Dan Cadman, June 30, 2016

In the weeks following the horrific Islamic terror massacre in San Bernardino committed by Syed Farook, a citizen of Pakistani origins, and his Pakistani fiancée, Tashfeen Malik, leaks of investigative information came out in a constant drip.

First came news that Malik had made social media postings of her radical views and allegiance to ISIS before immigrating, which was not known to the government due to a policy by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) precluding officers from looking into such information, allegedly to protect the "privacy" of applicants. It's just one of many such faux privacy-rights policies issued by DHS and its subordinate agencies for foreign individuals who don't, in fact, have any legal basis on which to claim those rights. Read more...

The Sensibility That Ties Open Immigration with 'Marriage Equality'

By Jerry Kammer, June 30, 2016

Those of us who want to limit immigration tend to think of ourselves as pragmatists. We believe that immigration can be a force for good if it is held within prescribed limits. We believe that those who think immigration is a basic human right are espousing a utopian fantasy.

One interesting subset of open borders advocates comprises those who see the fight for unrestricted immigration as part of the fight for equality and freedom that in recent years has been successfully waged by advocates of same-sex marriage, who say they are seeking "marriage equality". Read more...

Brexit Byproducts

By David North, June 30, 2016

Alongside the expected major geo-political and economic consequences of Brexit, which would have caused me to, painfully, cast a "remain" vote were I a British citizen, there are a number of interesting migration by-products.

The obvious one is that the UK government will now be able to limit migration from the European Union, just like almost all the other nations of the world. My colleagues and I at CIS have long warned about the negative consequences of making immigration policy by treaty and now the British public has decided to get out of the European treaties because, among other things, it denies the UK the right to control migration from other EU nations. Read more...

Secret Payments from U.S. EB-5 Regional Centers to Chinese State-Run EB-5 Agents Violate the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act

By CIS, June 28, 2016

Guest post by Dallas EB-5 attorney Shae Armstrong

The 1992 EB-5 Regional Center Program, a subset of the original 1990 EB-5 Immigrant Investment regulations, is set to expire on September 30, 2016. The EB-5 program permits U.S. companies to raise capital from foreign nationals seeking expedited permanent-residency status ("green card") in the United States. Chinese immigrant investors account for over 90 percent of the EB-5 visa category. Read more...

Analyzing Terror and Its Immigration Nexus

By Dan Cadman, June 28, 2016

In February 2016 the Washington Post reported the findings of a study that said "there is no real link between immigration and terror." A look at the study (behind a paywall, but you can find the abstract here and a brief précis and interview here) reveals that it is based on a very sophisticated technique called "spatial temporal regression" that is subject to significant error when misapplied by researchers who commit the sins of over-aggregation and aggregating unlike things. A classic proof of misapplication was established by Benoit Mandelbrot, in which the coastline of Britain is measured using a long yardstick, a medium yardstick, and a short yardstick, yielding different results: "it is inherently nonsensical to discuss certain spatial concepts despite an inherent presumption of the validity of the concept." Read more...

A Plethora of Inside Information Is Available from China on EB-5 Scams

By David North, June 28, 2016

What are the primarily Chinese investors in the EB-5 program being told about the promoters' offers in Mandarin? EB-5 is the government's immigrant investor program that provides sets of green cards to families who make half-million-dollar investments in government-approved, but not guaranteed, business ventures.

To what extent are these investors misinformed, sometimes criminally, and to what extent is DHS paying attention to this aspect of the program? (We know that the EB-5 unit has one or more Mandarin speakers in it, but is that enough?) Read more...

Panama Announces Another Illegal-Alien Amnesty

By Kausha Luna, June 27, 2016

Just four years after an amnesty was decreed by the prior administration, the current Panamanian president has enacted two more amnesties: one for illegal aliens in general and the other specifically for Chinese illegal aliens.

There are approximately 10,000 Chinese illegal aliens in Panama. Read more...