Immigration Blog

Accepting Australia's Rejected 'Refugees'

By Dan Cadman, November 14, 2016

More than once in recent weeks I've suggested that in its waning months the Obama administration would use its lame duck status to slip through as many more "transformational" changes to immigration policy and regulation as it thinks it can get away with.

One was official adoption of a sadly weakened definition of "extreme hardship" that will render it magnitudes easier for removable aliens, including aliens convicted of significant offenses, to sidestep the actual consequence of exclusion or deportation by being granted a waiver based on a finding of extreme hardship to the aliens' family members. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) foisted this change off on an unsuspecting public via "policy" guidance to its adjudicators — almost certainly choosing this mechanism rather than going the regulatory amendment route that would have had to meet the requirements of the Administrative Procedure Act by being announced in tentative form, published for public comment, etc., before being finalized. Read more...

Latest EB-5 Disaster in S.D. Reads Like an Article from the Onion

By David North, November 14, 2016

The latest EB-5 investor-visa fiasco in South Dakota — this time it's a casino in Deadwood, S.D. — is unfolding as if it were a satirical article in the Onion.

Those suing the former director of the state's EB-5 regional center include Big Kenny, apparently a major country and western singer, Double Bar X Ranch, and the Original Deadwood Partners. (Big Kenny signed the complaint as W. Kenneth Alphin.)

These three were among the developers who, to quote the Rapid City Journal, wanted to change "a converted gold-mining slime plant" into a casino and entertainment center. Read more...

Mexico's Castaneda: Take a Hard Line Against Trump

By Jerry Kammer, November 14, 2016

Former Mexican Foreign Minister Jorge Castaneda, a likely candidate for the Mexican presidency in 2018, is calling on his country's government to take a hard line against potential large-scale deportations of Mexicans in the administration of U.S. President-Elect Donald Trump.

"I think Mexico should draw its line," Castaneda writes in a column for El Financiero that is also published on his website. In blunt language he outlines a plan for Mexico to paralyze deportations by declaring that it will accept deportees only if the United States presents documents to prove that they are Mexicans. Read more...

They Still Just Don't Get It

By Dan Cadman, November 13, 2016

The general level of whining and cluelessness emanating from those in the Clinton Circle has been distasteful to watch. Any number of articles have been printed now discussing their angst and attempts to figure out how they "got it so wrong". (See here and here.)

This doesn't seem to me to be a higher math equation; it's more like a 2+2=4 kind of thing. That they still don't get it suggests exactly why they lost the election. Read more...

Election Hands Maricopa Sheriff's Job to Newcomer

By Dan Cadman, November 10, 2016

Most followers of immigration issues know that Arizona has been a flashpoint in the battle between open-borders advocates on one hand, and pro-enforcement types on the other.

Most people also know that Arizonans — or at least significant numbers of them — maintain conservative views. This is, after all, the home of Barry Goldwater and the longtime fiefdom of Republican Senator John McCain, who just won reelection (but who is, however inexplicably, disturbingly liberal on the singular issue of immigration, having been one of the fathers of the abysmal and failed "Gang of Eight" amnesty bill of 2013). In the presidential election on November 8, Donald Trump carried the state, although by a smaller margin than one might think given its conservative "pedigree". Read more...

In the Election Aftermath, Media Observations on the Need for a Civil Discussion of Immigration

By Jerry Kammer, November 10, 2016

I opposed Donald Trump's presidential candidacy, but welcomed his success in making immigration policy a centerpiece of the campaign despite efforts by leaders of both major parties to avoid it. It is good to see that this discussion has been an important theme in the aftermath of an election that may be remembered as the most stunning in American history. Here are some of the comments I have come across. Immigration is not explicitly mentioned in all of them, but I think it is part of the subtext. Read more...

The Coming End of DACA and DAPA

By John Miano, November 10, 2016

Four years ago I pointed out the fundamental problem with the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program: Anyone who signed up for DACA would be adding their names to a list of self-identified illegal aliens. Should a future administration decide that it would start enforcing the law, the DACA program would provide list of prime candidates for deportation.

At the time, this was so obvious that I was surprised anyone would be stupid enough to sign up for DACA and DAPA (Deferred Action for Parents of Americans). Yet apparently hundreds of thousands of people did so anyway. Read more...

Stability Prevails in the Leadership/Membership of Migration Committees

By David North, November 10, 2016

Tuesday's elections, despite Donald Trump's victory, made virtually no impact on the leadership or the membership of the two congressional immigration committees.

With the Republicans holding their majorities in both houses, the leadership of the Senate and House Judiciary committees and their respective immigration subcommittees will remain in GOP hands. Further, all members of both full committees and the subcommittees who sought re-election secured it or, in the case of 10 of the 15 senators, they were not subject to re-election. Read more...

Looking Ahead

By Dan Cadman, November 9, 2016

Wow. So Donald Trump performed the hat trick successfully despite prognostications from the punditry and sundry dirty tricks from the media, much of which so helpfully aided Clinton toward her ultimate defeat.

But enough of that. Time to look ahead. I'm sure folks everywhere will have advice for the incoming president and his team on all fronts, so I'm going to limit my few remarks to those central to the Center's raison d'etre: American immigration policy and operations.

Mr. Trump campaigned vigorously on a platform of reinstituting respect for the nation's sovereignty, which means above all things that the immigration laws of the United States must be uniformly and routinely enforced. Time to make good on that promise, because it isn't one readily to be forgotten. Read more...

Survey Highlights Popularity of Immigration Enforcement

By Steven A. Camarota, November 7, 2016

Using neutral language, a new poll of 1,000 likely voters conducted November 1-3 by Pulse Opinion Research for the Center for Immigration Studies shows that the public wants immigration laws enforced, and the level of legal immigration reduced. Unlike many other polls, which give the public the false choice of mass deportation or a "path to citizenship", this poll asked respondents if they support causing illegal immigrants to leave the country by enforcing the law. A majority of the public supported this approach; and a majority or plurality supported it among almost all demographic groups, including Hispanics. Moreover, a majority of Americans want a level of legal immigration significantly lower than the current level; few want the kinds of increases contained in the Gang of Eight bill from 2013. Read more...

Good News and Bad About an Immigration/Marriage Fraud Case

By David North, November 7, 2016

There's both good news and bad about an alien in the courts for immigration-related marriage fraud.

The good news, and this is unusual, is that he got caught and the Seventh Circuit has overruled his appeal. He is Kiril Hristov Vidinski, and he paid a citizen to marry him for immigration benefits. He has been an illegal alien in the United States for 18 years. Read more...

Revisiting One-Sided Marriage Fraud

By Dan Cadman, November 7, 2016

Since my last blog posting about the disastrous consequences of one-sided marriage frauds, I have received a considerable amount of correspondence from citizen victims of such frauds. I suspect this may also be true for my colleague, David North, who also has written about the evils of marriage fraud.

The range of victims has been notable, spanning a variety of races and ethnicities, and has included at least one naturalized citizen, showing that even those who have been through the legal immigration system can be blind to the possibility of fraud when the heart overrules the head. Read more...

The Administration Creates Many Quasi-Amnesty Classifications

By David North, November 7, 2016

If you think that creativity is a good thing, you have to admire the Obama administration for the innumerable ways it manages to dream up new classes of agency-defined, specialized quasi-amnesties for subsets of illegal aliens, all without any help from Congress. Read more...

Ecuadorian Illegals Denied Temporary Protected Status

By Kausha Luna, November 4, 2016

On Thursday, the government of Ecuador announced that the United States denied a request for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for its illegal aliens there.

The Ecuadorian government made a request for TPS in May, after a 7.8-magnitude earthquake struck Ecuador's central coast in April. Read more...

Pope Counsels "Prudence" not Open Borders Regarding Refugees

By Nayla Rush, November 4, 2016

Pope Francis spoke to reporters on his way back from a two-day trip to Sweden this Tuesday. He elaborated on, or rather "corrected his position" on welcoming refugees into Europe. He had previously urged Europe to open its doors to refugees and decried the selfishness of the states that didn't. This week, his message was more nuanced.

The Pope is now recommending that European governments exercise "prudence" and advising them not to accept refugees beyond their hosting capacities. Proper hosting entails providing refugees with "a roof, work, school, language courses" in order for them to "integrate". If not, states will "pay a political price for an imprudent calculation in welcoming more refugees than they can integrate" since non-integrated refugees will then form "ghettos", which is "very dangerous". Read more...

BBC Airs Its Media Bias on "Unaccompanied Minors"

By Dan Cadman, November 4, 2016

On Wednesday, November 2, I was watching BBC World News and a segment came on showing the last of the "unaccompanied minors" being removed from the unlawful migrant squatters camp called "the Jungle" outside of Calais, France. The migrants, from nearly every part of the globe, but especially the Middle East and Sub-Saharan Africa, have been gathering there over the course of two years after illegally entering France, all hoping to get across the English channel to the United Kingdom by means of the France-UK "Chunnel" that passes underneath. Read more...

Visa Mills Revisited, or a Nightmare Come True

By David North, November 3, 2016

As the Obama administration has appropriately, if belatedly, started to crack down on the sleaziest of the for-profit vocational schools such as Corinthian Colleges and ITT, I worried that one or more of these entities, which had formerly victimized low-income Americans would, once they lost their Pell grants, turn to foreign students.

Neither did. Both filed for bankruptcy. Read more...

Supreme Court Docket Holds More Immigration Cases, Including Another 'Aggravated Felony' Challenge

By Dan Cadman, November 3, 2016

The hit parade of infamy keeps on coming. If anyone doubts the importance of establishing a rational policy toward immigration to the United States, they need only take a look at the cases on the plate of the Supreme Court, both during the last session and this one.

Several times in recent months I've blogged about immigration-related cases accepted by the Court; one of those was settled with a resounding victory for common sense, and the other two are teed up and ready to be heard (see here and here). Read more...

Half a Century of Cuban Adjustment

By Kausha Luna, November 1, 2016

Tomorrow marks the 50th anniversary of the 1966 Cuban Adjustment Act (CAA). A Cold War relic, the CAA and the "wet foot, dry foot" policy continue to function as pull factors for U.S.-bound Cuban illegal aliens. Read more...

Halloween Special: Benefits for Living Aliens Based on Ghostly Relatives

By David North, October 31, 2016

Just in time for Halloween, the Department of Homeland Security has reminded us that it grants legal immigration status to some aliens based on the ghostly hardships of the aliens' relatives — even though those hardships have been obliterated by death.

This is meant to be a footnote to an earlier posting by my colleague Dan Cadman on the broader subject of how DHS has stretched the concept of "extreme hardship" to the extreme in order to make it easier for the government to grant legal status to aliens using claims that should they be deported, that would cause an "extreme hardship" to someone else. Read more...

Australia Considers Permanent Ban on Illegal Migrants

By Dan Cadman, October 31, 2016

Australia has once again caused a furor with one of its legislative proposals.

The Australian government previously has gotten a firestorm of press (and criticism from various international and migrant advocacy groups) for a pay-to-stay-away plan allegedly providing a financial incentive for maritime alien smugglers not to move their human cargo into Australian waters; for "renting" space on foreign territory on which to set up camps for migrants and asylum-seekers interdicted at sea; and for a proposal to strip citizenship from any dual nationals caught engaging in or supporting terrorism. Read more...

'Extreme Hardship' Need Not Be So Extreme Under USCIS Policy Guidance

By Dan Cadman, October 28, 2016

Law360 posted an item the other day with this teaser:

USCIS Unveils Guidance on Extreme Hardship Determinations

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services on Friday released policy guidance on extreme hardship determinations regarding certain relatives, making good on one of the lesser known initiatives announced under President Barack Obama's executive actions on immigration.

Extreme hardship is an important principle in immigration law, because the statute provides waivers of inadmissibility for certain aliens who can establish that their removal/denial of admission would result in such hardship to certain categories of U.S. citizen or resident alien family members.

It's Like Old Times — ICE Raids Mexican Cafes, Seizes Owner's Cadillac

By David North, October 28, 2016

It's as if you were watching late night TV this month, and Johnny Carson appeared on the tube, as alive as you and me. Read more...

S.C. Tax Money Meant for Kids and Teachers Is Sent to Distant Middleman

By David North, October 26, 2016

Can an out-of-state financial middleman pocket more than a million dollars in South Carolina taxpayers' money meant for kids and teachers at one small school? Read more...

Lessons Learned by an Insider in the 30 Years Since IRCA

By Dan Cadman, October 26, 2016

My colleague Jerry Kammer has posted a couple of read-worthy blogs on the 30th anniversary of the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 (IRCA); see here and here. Read more...

Mexico and Honduras Announce Amnesties

By Kausha Luna, October 25, 2016

Mexico and Honduras announced last week they would grant amnesty to illegal aliens in their respective territories. Read more...

Attention Would-Be EB-5 Investors: Avoid Putting Your Money into Charter Schools

By David North, October 25, 2016

There is a new trend in the EB-5 (immigrant investor) visa program — placing those funds in charter schools.

The EB-5 program rewards rich aliens with a handful of green cards following a half-million-dollar investment into a government sanctioned, but not guaranteed, project. Charter schools are 99-percent-plus supported by local taxpayer funds and provide tuition-free education; they are usually private entities lightly regulated by local school boards. EB-5 is a federal program; charter schools operate at the local level and are not regulated by the federal government.

There are three main reasons for alien investors to avoid charter school investments: Read more...

More Proof of Vetting Failures in the Immigration Process

By Dan Cadman, October 25, 2016

Two more recent terrorism-related law enforcement cases have led to three more chuckleheads who pledged allegiance to ISIS being in custody for material support of terror.

One of the three, Iraqi refugee Omar Faraj Saeed Al Hardan, copped a plea to the charge in a Houston federal court. His co-conspirator and fellow Iraqi refugee, Aws Mohammed Younis Al-Jayab, is detained in Chicago awaiting trial, unless he too decides to plead out. Read more...

GAO Finds Most Funding in EB-5 Projects Is NOT from Alien Investors

By David North, October 24, 2016

The majority of the money invested in projects that attract EB-5 (investor visa) funding does not come through that program; it comes from mainstream capital sources. But despite this fact, the alien investors continue to be given sets of green cards for their half-million-dollar inputs.

The marginal significance of the EB-5 funds was described in a recently released report by the Government Accountability Office. Read more...

10 Executives Indicted in Scheme to Use B-2 Aliens as Workers

By David North, October 24, 2016

Back in 2011, a retail store executive must have said "Let's stop using those expensive H-1B workers and switch to foreign workers on tourist visas."

A Virginia-based business, which runs some of those kiosks you see in malls, did just that and now 10 of its executives and other staffers face 34 criminal counts and the prospect of years in federal prison. The story came to light when one of the 10 pleaded guilty, an act that in similar circumstances leads other conspirators to do the same thing. (Aliens on tourist visas are not allowed to work in the United States.) Read more...