Immigration Blog

110,000 Refugees Resettled in the U.S in FY 2017?

By Nayla Rush, September 20, 2016

President's Obama's deep commitment to the refugee cause following the Syrian crisis and its five million refugees is now well established.

We predicted in a previous blog the arrival of at least 12,000 Syrian refugees by the end of FY 2016 on September 30 (surpassing the Obama administration's "floor-not-ceiling" target of 10,000).

Following the release of the government's "Proposed Refugee Admissions for Fiscal Year 2017" report to Congress we know that number to be even higher. The Obama administration announced it is expecting a total of 13,000 Syrian refugees by the end of this fiscal year. Read more...

Are International Moral Obligations a One-Way Street?

By Dan Cadman, September 20, 2016

Earlier this month, two Fresno County, Calif., correctional officers were shot by Laotian immigrant Thong Van, a multiple felon under an outstanding order of deportation — which could not be carried out by federal immigration authorities because the Laotian government refused to cooperate in providing the travel documents needed for his removal back to Laos.

As a consequence, he was released from immigration detention because the Supreme Court has previously established guidelines for the maximum amount of time an individual can be held while attempting to execute orders of removal. Read more...

When Are We Going to Get Serious About Immigration?

By Mark Krikorian, September 20, 2016

The news over the past couple of days highlights how screwed up our immigration policy is.

In response to the Minnesota attack by a Somali immigrant jihadist, Jeremy Carl asks at National Review, "But if even a small, but meaningful number of Somali immigrants join terror groups, which they most certainly do in numbers far out of proportion to their population, why do we need to bring in more?" Read more...

Another Needless Killing by a Drunk-Driving Illegal Alien

By Dan Cadman, September 19, 2016

The Daily Caller is reporting the killing of a Johnson County, Kan., law enforcement officer, Master Deputy Brandon Collins, at the hands of an illegal alien, one Adrian Espinosa-Flores, who was driving drunk at the time he plowed his vehicle into Deputy Collins and then ran away.

It was a needless death because, according to the Daily Caller, Espinosa-Flores was on the streets despite having been arrested twice previously — a pertinent fact that somehow just doesn't show up in the Kansas City Star newspaper article about him being charged with manslaughter in the case. Sloppy reporting or political correctness? Read more...

GAO Uses Tired Approach to EB-5 Fraud, Misses Real Chance for Change

By David North, September 19, 2016

The extent of fraud in the immigrant investor (EB-5) program is a subject of importance, one we at CIS have reported on frequently, and have mapped, and one that deserves a more spirited approach.

So it was with some anticipation that I read the recent Government Accountability Office (GAO) report on fighting fraud within the program. Sadly, the GAO document suggests a metaphor from medieval warfare:

The bad prince (symbol of the EB-5 fraudsters) is holed up in the big castle, and the good guys, on the outside, want to capture it. Read more...

Immigration and the Art of "Trumpology"

By Dan Cadman, September 17, 2016

I've been watching with a certain amused fascination as various organizations and news media engage in what my colleague David North has wittily called "Trumpology" on the subject of immigration, to try to determine where he really stands on the issue.

For instance, The Hill published a piece titled "Five Burning Questions about Trump's immigration plan" and Law360 put out an article titled "Parsing Donald Trump's Positions on Immigration" (the full item is behind a paywall). Read more...

Darrell Issa Continues to Fail U.S. Workers

By John Miano, September 17, 2016

Last week I wrote about Rep. Darrell Issa's do-nothing "reform" bill for the H-1B program. The purpose of Issa's bill is to head off other bills (such as those from Sen. Sessions and Sen. Grassley) that would fix some of the problems in H-1B. It is no wonder that Issa's bill has the support of industry groups.

Yesterday there was a markup session for Issa's do-nothing bill in the House immigration subcommittee, where the bill ended up being pulled. Read more...

Two Immigration Bills, on H-1B and EB-5, Stalled in the House Committee

By David North, September 16, 2016

Two House bills, each carrying some useful reforms and dealing separately with the H-1B (foreign worker) and EB-5 (immigrant investor) programs, stalled in mid-flight this week.

Both bills were scheduled for markup (detailed committee consideration) on Wednesday and both markups were postponed by the leadership of the House Judiciary Committee. As of this writing the markups have not yet been re-scheduled. Read more...

Immigration Advocates Are in Denial About the Plight of Low-Skill Americans

By Jason Richwine, September 15, 2016

In a CIS Backgrounder released last week, I showed that low-skill Americans have been dropping out of the labor force even as low-skill immigrants have been finding plenty of work. For example, while natives fell from 56 percent of the nation's high school dropouts to 52 percent, their share of the labor performed by all dropouts declined much faster — from 50 percent in the 2003-2005 period to 40 percent in 2012-2015.

The point is not necessarily that immigrants are pushing natives out of the labor force — the data cannot address causation here — but that immigration has been a crutch, or band-aid, that allows politicians and businessmen to ignore the growing problem of idleness among low-skill Americans. Read more...

Melania Trump Attorney Letter Shows She Came to U.S. Legally

By John Miano, September 14, 2016

There was a slight flare up last month when Politico raised questions about Melania Trump's immigration status. I wrote in response: "The Politico article is a shoddy piece of journalism, where the authors have raised theories, but have done no research to confirm their theories."

The apparently inconsistent data were:

GAO Incidentally Reveals Existence of an Important FOIA Lawsuit

By Dan Cadman, September 14, 2016

Remember the public outrage when it was revealed that San Bernardino attacker Tashfeen Malik had posted radical views, including support of the Islamic State terrorist group, on social media? Officers at multiple agencies of the federal government – including the State Department Bureau of Consular Affairs and two Department of Homeland Security (DHS) agencies, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, and Immigration and Customs Enforcement – didn't discover the postings, presumably because of foolish and unnecessary restrictions prohibiting invasion of aliens' bogus "privacy" rights. Read more...

Stopping the Cross-Border Flow of People, Drugs, Cash, and Weapons

By Ronald W. Mortensen, September 13, 2016

The 2016 presidential campaign has drawn a sharp contrast between Donald Trump, the president of Mexico, and Hillary Clinton when it comes to the fight against human traffickers, the cross-border drug trade, and the smuggling of cash and weapons. On the one hand, Trump and the Mexican president agree on the role that a wall can play in stopping the illegal, cross-border flow of people, drugs, cash, and weapons. On the other hand, Clinton offers more of the same with her hollow promise of "secure borders" coupled with amnesty for illegal aliens in the United States – nothing to effectively interdict cross-border human trafficking and nothing to effectively stop the flow of drugs weapons or cash. Read more...

Trump's Emphasis on Visa Violators Won't Give Mexicans a Pass

By Dan Cadman, September 13, 2016

My colleague David North has written about Donald Trump's recent statement linking the importance of enforcing immigration laws against both illegal border crossers ("entrants without inspection" or EWIs) and visa abusers.

Because the emphasis on visa violators (often just called "overstays," though there are other ways to violate visa rules than just overstaying) is new, North poses this question in the context of presidential election strategy: Read more...

Responding to Accusations of Dishonesty from a Careless Reader

By Dan Cadman, September 13, 2016

In March 2014 I wrote a Backgrounder for the Center titled "Asylum in the United States" that described how the checks and balances in the asylum system have been dismantled. An irate reader has just responded to that Backgrounder with an email, as follows: Read more...

A New EB-5 Bill Emerges

By David North, September 12, 2016

A House of Representatives bill (H.R. 5992) on the immigrant investor program (EB-5) surfaced Friday and is due to be marked up (i.e., discussed and perhaps changed) in committee on Wednesday, September 14.

The signs are that a neater, cleaner and much better EB-5 program will emerge if this bill, or something like, it is passed. It was introduced by the Republican chairman and the ranking Democrat of the House Judiciary Committee, Rep. Robert Goodlatte (R-Va.) and John Conyers (D-Mich.). Read more...

Is It Sometimes Justifiable for a Man to Beat His Wife?
Americans have sharply different views of gender equality compared to residents of some immigrant-sending countries

By Jason Richwine, September 12, 2016
Americans have sharply different views of gender equality compared to residents of some immigrant-sending countries

Part of Donald Trump's "extreme vetting" proposal may include a test for whether potential immigrants conform to American views on the rights of women. How important is such a test?

While no one will be surprised that traditional societies are less likely to favor gender equality than First World countries such as the United States, the sheer size of the differences can be striking. The three figures below use questions from the World Values Survey to illustrate the disparities. All of the comparison nations are developing countries that have sent at least 100,000 immigrants to the United States as of 2014. Read more...

Government Statistics Paint Grim Portrait of 'Abused' Alien Spouses

By David North, September 9, 2016

Distressing new statistical information — from the government itself — paints an unattractive picture of the population of "abused" spouses claiming green card status under the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA).

As we noted in a previous blog post, the number of spouses successfully claiming these benefits almost tripled between FY 2013 and FY 2014, going from 3,318 to 8,706.

In each case the alien, usually a woman, married a U.S. citizen or green card holder and later persuaded the government that the U.S. resident was abusive — hence an automatic green card for the alien in question. Read more...

Trump's Emphasis on Enforcing the Law on Visa Abusers

By David North, September 8, 2016

In his recent immigration policy speech, delivered a few hours after his visit with the president of Mexico, Donald Trump said that his emphasis for immigration law enforcement would be on criminal aliens and (presumably secondarily) on visa abusers.

Bearing in mind that the candidate switches his positions from time to time, and the strong possibility that the distinction between visa abusers and those entering without inspection (EWIs) may be fuzzy to him, as it is to most Americans, let's look at his focus on visa abusers. Read more...

A Look at the Washington Post's 'Taco Truck' Snark Fest

By Jerry Kammer, September 8, 2016

Last week's media response to the warning that unchecked immigration would bring the United States "a taco truck [on every] corner" was sadly predictable. Reporters piled the mockery onto Marco Gutierrez, who issued the warning on MSNBC. Gutierrez is the founder of Latinos for Trump and himself an immigrant from Mexico. The subtext of the media pile-on was plain: "See how ridiculous this opposition to illegal immigration is? See how laughable? See how morally superior we are for ridiculing this Trump stooge?" Read more...

A Closer Look at Trump's Promise to Triple the ICE Officer Corps

By Dan Cadman, September 7, 2016

In his recent policy speech on immigration, both legal and illegal, Donald Trump said with regard to the latter that, if he were elected president, "We're going to triple the number of ICE deportation officers." The "ICE" to which he was referring is, of course, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the agency within the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) that is responsible for interior immigration enforcement.

Trump's commitment stems from a recognition that, while border enforcement is hobbling along on one leg with one hand tied behind its back, interior immigration enforcement has been completely dismembered, notwithstanding which, like the Black Knight in the Monte Python movie, it refuses to give up. Read more...

Green Cards Triple in a Worrisome Category — Abused Spouses of Citizens

By David North, September 7, 2016

New data from the Department of Homeland Security shows a highly worrisome increase in the number of green cards issued to aliens (almost always alien women) who have successfully claimed that their (usually new) U.S. citizen spouses abused them.

Everyone is concerned about abusive spouses, but I find it highly unlikely that the actual incidence of spousal abuse among citizen-alien couples tripled between 2013 and 2014. What is much more likely is that the sleepy people at USCIS have turned a blind eye to a growing trend of fraudulent use of a provision in immigration law that allows an abused spouse to secure a green card largely on her unsupported testimony that her new citizen (or green card) spouse has been abusive to her. Read more...

Darrell Issa's H-1B Bill Does Nothing for U.S. Workers

By John Miano, September 7, 2016

I have analyzed provisions of other H-1B reform bills, But Rep. Darrell Issa's H.R. 5801 is the easiest yet to analyze: Issa's H-1B reform bill does absolutely nothing.

It does take a little effort to explain what is going on in the bill. Read more...

Mexico Encourages the Illegal Immigration of Africans to the U.S.

By Dan Cadman, September 6, 2016

Fox News reports that 425 Africans who penetrated Mexico's southern border illegally and entered the state of Chiapas were initially taken into custody by the National Migration Institute (INM, by its Spanish acronym) after they surrendered themselves.

According to the report, they were unwilling to state their respective nationalities to the Mexican authorities, notwithstanding which they were then released and given transit visas to cross Mexico in order to reach the United States' southern border, there presumably to either cross illegally or present themselves to a port of entry to seek asylum. Read more...

ACLU, NYT, & La Raza All Agree: 75% of Illegal Aliens Are Committing Felonies

By Ronald W. Mortensen, September 5, 2016

On "Fox News Sunday", Chris Wallace asked what Trump would do with all of the law abiding illegal aliens who have not committed any crimes since entering the United States illegally. Wallace's question is based on the myth that most illegal aliens are law abiding, which is simply not the case. The fact is that the vast majority of illegal aliens routinely commit multiple job-related felonies.

"According to who?" you ask. Well, the answer is that the Social Security Administration, ACLU, New York Times, La Raza, LULAC, Democratic pundits Kirsten Powers and Eleanor Clift, the libertarian Reason Foundation, and USA Today. Read more...

Immigration Shenanigans in Trump Tower, But Donald's Barely Involved

By David North, September 2, 2016

This is a story about a questionable, immigration-related sleight of hand within New York's Trump Tower, and about high fashion, but it has very little to do with The Donald (who lives there) and nothing to do with alien fashion models allegedly working for his model agency while in illegal status in the past.

Nor does it deal with the question of Mrs. Trump's immigration status when she first came to New York City as a fashion model, which John Miano and I wrote about in previous blog posts. Read more...

The Elites Are Outraged at the "Taco Trucks" Warning

By Jerry Kammer, September 2, 2016

The New York-to-Washington cognoscenti corridor of media elites is abuzz over the warning from Marcos Gutierrez, the founder of Latinos for Trump, that unless the United States gets serious about stopping illegal immigration, "you're going to have taco trucks [on] every corner."

The reactions run the spectrum from mockery to amusement to outrage. Read more...

A Floor, Not a Ceiling; 65,000 Syrian Refugees in FY 2017?

By Nayla Rush, September 2, 2016

The fact that the U.S. reached its FY 2016 resettlement target of 10,000 Syrian refugees came as no surprise. We predicted this administration to be right "on track" as we could not foresee President Obama presiding over a refugee summit later this month in New York before honoring his part of the bargain first. Read more...

Mexican Columnists Vent Their Anger at Trump Visit

By Jerry Kammer, September 1, 2016

If there is anyone in Mexico today who is less popular than Donald Trump, it may be the man who invited Trump to Mexico City yesterday. That is clear throughout the Mexican press, including the opinion page of today's El Universal, a Mexico City daily and the country's largest newspaper. Here are samples from four of the newspaper's columnists, who were clearly eager to vent their frustration and anger. Read more...

Being Pro-Me Doesn’t Mean I’m Anti-You

By Mark Krikorian, September 1, 2016

Rich Lowry at National Review is right about Trump's Phoenix address that "From an immigration hawk point of view, it is almost certainly the soundest speech ever given by a major-party presidential candidate." It was detailed and substantive and touched on issues that everyone's familiar with (like sanctuary cities) as well as less well-known ones, like the administration's unwillingness to sanction countries that won't take their own citizens back. (The text is here.) I hope this puts an end to the Jeb/Marco/Schumer talk that was so alarming last week, though I fully expect to be disappointed soon enough by the next dumb thing Trump says. Read more...

Using Disaster to 'Transform' Just a Little Bit More of America

By Dan Cadman, August 31, 2016

After the devastating floods in Louisiana (including large areas around the state capital of Baton Rouge), the Obama administration offended Louisianans, rich and poor, of all races, when its favorite political arm, the Department of Justice (DOJ), sent out a message warning them not to exercise racial bias in their clean-up efforts.

The flooding claimed several lives and videos surfaced in the media showing Louisianans helping Louisianans — clearly no bias on display, just courageous neighbors helping one another out of desperate situations. Read more...