Immigration Blog

Driver's Licenses Make It Easy for Law Enforcement to Identify Illegal Aliens

By Ronald W. Mortensen, May 3, 2017

The Trump administration's aggressive enforcement of immigration laws is causing illegal aliens and their political backers to have second thoughts about some of their past victories.

Illegal aliens and their supporters now realize that well over a million illegal aliens are carrying driver's licences issued by 12 states and the District of Columbia; see below for a breakdown of the rules in each of these jurisdictions. As required by the federal REAL ID Act of 2005, these licenses clearly identify the holder as being unlawfully in the United States. In addition, these states and the District of Columbia now have large databases with the personal identifying information, addresses, and phone numbers of large numbers of illegal aliens. Read more...

Illegal Immigrants Get Off Easy in Baltimore

By Andrew R. Arthur, May 2, 2017

This is the first paragraph of an op-ed I wrote for the Baltimore Sun today. Read the whole article here.

Baltimore's State's Attorney's Office now has two sets of rules: one for citizens and legal immigrants, and one for illegal immigrants. In an April 27 memorandum, Marilyn Mosby's office "instructed prosecutors to think twice before charging illegal immigrants with minor, non-violent crimes in response to stepped up immigration enforcement by the Trump administration." Read more...

Open-Borders Advocates Slip EB-5 and H-2B Extensions into Spending Bill

By David North, May 2, 2017

The congressional leadership, aided by the Appropriations Committee, has once again extended the EB-5 program, and a loophole in the H-2B program, by inserting language in the massive interim budget bill. The provisions, due to expire this coming Friday will now remain in place until September 30, the end of the fiscal year.

Republican and Democratic leaders agreed over the weekend to the text of the budget bill, which is expected to be passed shortly. Read more...

Reactions to Trump's First 100 Days from South of the Border

By Kausha Luna, May 1, 2017

The 100th day of the Trump administration arrived over the weekend, and with it an onslaught of articles remarking on the administration's accomplishments, or lack thereof. Below is an overview of immigration-related events and trends that have emerged south of the border, including but not limited to:

  • Increases in social and economic reintegration programs for deportees;
  • Migrants searching for destinations other than the United States; and
  • A surge of asylum applications in Mexico.

Too Good to Check?

By Jerry Kammer, May 1, 2017

"The press can't simply report flatfooted a smearing accusation against someone's loyalty," said Murray Marder, who did some of the sharpest reporting on [Sen. Joseph] McCarthy in the Washington Post. "The press should ask the accuser, 'What do you mean? What justification do you have?' That's real work, and it's called journalism."
The Age of Anxiety, by Haynes Johnson

Yet Another Multimillion Dollar EB-5 Scandal Comes to Light

By David North, May 1, 2017

Just as the backers of the EB-5 (immigrant investor) program drew a small sigh of relief — the program won a week's additional life from Congress — another multi-million-dollar scandal, this one involving a gold mine in Idaho, came to light.

The main part of the EB-5 program, which allows investors to essentially buy a family-sized set of green cards for $500,000, is set to sunset on Friday, May 5, unless the congressional leadership, yet again, secures another extension of the program. Read more...

Even Cato Agrees: A Border Wall Can Pay for Itself

By Steven A. Camarota, May 1, 2017

In a recent report published by the Center for Immigration Studies, I examined the fiscal costs of illegal immigrants who cross the border based on estimates developed by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NAS). I then estimated how many illegal border-crossers a wall would have to stop or deter to pay for itself.

Last week Cato Institute authors Alex Nowrasteh and David Bier published a blog post criticizing my analysis. For the most part, their comments reflect their opinions concerning the marginal impact of things like the cost of more Border Patrol agents or whether state and local costs should count, rather than actually addressing the real cost of a wall. One interesting point they argue is that illegal immigrants are somewhat more educated than I estimated, but they do not explain how they created their estimates and I have not been able to replicate their numbers. Nonetheless, the Cato authors still find that illegal border-crossers cost $43,444 during their lifetimes, or $4.3 billion per 100,000. So, despite the Cato blog post being titled "The Border Wall Cannot Pay for Itself", their own cost estimates would simply mean that a border wall would have to stop 16 to 20 percent of those expected in the next decade to pay for itself (as opposed to 9 to 12 percent in my estimate).

Some of the specific issues with Cato's critique: Read more...

The Silence of the Shams

By Dan Cadman, May 1, 2017

The Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) recently published an assessment of the president's first 100 days in office, as have many other organizations, pundits, and media outlets.

One of the things that several of those other assessments have in common is to fault the president for a relatively sparse record on legislation passed. Although it's true that there hasn't been much — which is deeply distressing in the arena of immigration matters given the great abundance of excellent past bills that have been bottled up in Congress waiting, waiting, waiting to be acted on — I find it somewhat amusing that the president is taking the hit for the dearth of legislation. Read more...

Massive Fraud Shown in O-1 (Extraordinary Ability) Nonimmigrant Category

By David North, April 30, 2017

[Revised May 8, 2017, to reflect that the New York case involves O-1 nonimmigrant visas, not EB-1 immigrant visas.]

It is with some chagrin that I return to a discussion of the relatively small "aliens of extraordinary ability" visa category.

A few weeks ago I wrote enthusiastically about Anya (not her real name) as an exemplar of the immigration system working as intended, as it so often does not. Read more...

Bad News & Good News on Immigration

By David North, April 28, 2017

The bad news is that the immigration investor (EB-5) program will have one more week of life before yet another deadline.

The mini extension was carried in the continuing resolution passed by both houses today; it will keep the government funded for another week. Read more...