Muslim ban, immigration legislation and other immigration news – October 11, 2012

Roeder Supreme Court

Photo by Phil Roeder, published under Creative Commons license

Yesterday, the Supreme Court said that Muslim ban opponents have to start over, with new challenges to the latest ban starting in federal district courts and working their way back up to the Supreme Court. Several such challenges have already been filed – more tomorrow, with a round-up of coverage of this latest development. For now, here’s an initial report from the Washington Post.

With a new set of demands/’principles’ announced by Trump this weekend, what’s going to happen with the Dream Act and with DACA? What new legislation is being proposed, and what impact would it have on immigrants and their families? Right now, it’s difficult to tell who will back which version of DACA/Dreamer legislation – with or without a path to citizenship, with a shorter path or with a longer path, with or without prohibitions on ever petitioning for family reunification. Meanwhile, in the larger immigration legislation debate, the border wall looms large, and the Trump administration also proposes to end most paths to family reunification, which it is now demonizing as “chain migration.”   Continue reading

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Trump backs out of Dreamer deal and other immigration news – October 8, 2017

IMG_3725On Sunday, Trump released “principles” that basically blew up any DACA/Dreamer deal previously agreed to. Trump’s demands comprise a line-up of proposals already rejected by Democrats and Dreamers, including funding the border wall, stopping Central American minors who seek asylum here, punishing sanctuary cities, replacing family reunification visas with a work and education-based preference, and cutting overall immigration.  Here are four reports:

I’m on vacation, so this post offers mostly links to important articles, and little commentary. Continue reading

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Immigration news from October 5, 2017

Jacobo and children

Jacobo and his family in Worthington

I’m on vacation, so this post offers little commentary, just links to some important articles, first from Minnesota and then the national news. In Minnesota, the lead story for me is that ICE has forced Jacobo Gabriel Tomas, a resident of Worthington for almost 25 years, to leave his family, his home, his job, his church, and his community – and to return to the violence-wracked country he fled as a 16-year-old. Continue reading

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Time running out for DACA renewals and other immigration news – October 1, 2017

DACA renewal 2

When the Trump administration rescinded DACA, they set two deadlines: March 5 for the end of the program, and October 5 for any DACA recipient whose permit expires before March 5 to file for renewal. That gave Congress six months to act and DACA recipients only 30 days to file for renewal. (Only those recipients whose DACA expires between September 5 and March 5 were eligible to file for renewal during this 30-day window.)

Brooklyn Federal Judge Nicholas Garaufis, hearing a challenge to the DACA rescission, expressed outrage with the government’s position:

“This is a democracy, these people have thrived in America, and you can’t just come into court and espouse a position that is so heartless.

“I’m 68 years old, and I’ve worked in every branch of government, and I’ve never seen a position like this.

“It’s unacceptable, quite frankly, to me, as a human being and as an American.”

Obviously, the government can and does espouse a heartless position. And they are not moving.

NOTE TO READERS: I’m officially on vacation until October 11, so expect fewer, and shorter, posts as I focus on museums and autumn leaves. Continue reading

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Keeping out refugees and other immigration news – September 29, 2017


Refugees welcomeTrump announced that the number of refugees admitted in 2018 will be capped at 45,000. That’s the lowest number since the Refugee Act of 1980 was enacted, and less than half the number set by the Obama administration last year. The lowest number ever set by a president was 67,000, set by President Ronald Reagan in 1986.

Last year, I wrote:

“A new UN refugee agency report shows 65.3 million people forcibly displaced from their homes around the world. Of that number, 21.3 million are refugees and 3.2 million are seeking asylum. Another 40.8 million internally displaced persons live inside their home countries, but have been forced out of their homes.”

U.S. vetting of refugees continues to be lengthy and intense. As the libertarian CAto Institute reported in a lengthy analysis, refugees are not terrorists. The only people killed by refugees in the United States were three people killed by right-wing Cuban refugees back in the 1970s. As I wrote back in January:

In fact, says the report, “the chance of an American being murdered in a terrorist attack caused by a refugee is 1 in 3.64 billion per year.” Vox uses a more colorful example: you are more likely to die by having your clothing melt or catch on fire than you are to die from an immigrant terrorist attack.

Bluster and bigotry are easier than analyzing facts and advocating responsible policies. The president’s latest move against refugees is heartless and unconscionable. And not at all surprising.

NOTE TO READERS: I’m taking some vacation time next week and the following week – expect fewer, and shorter, posts as I focus on museums and autumn leaves.

Continue reading

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“They will arrest anyone that has a pulse” and other immigration news – September 28, 2017

prison bars

Photo by Michael Coghlan, used under Creative Commons license

Today’s stories include the crisis in immigration courts, federal contracts for intelligence gathering on immigrants, and a surge in apprehensions at the border.

NBC’s reporting on the crisis in immigration courts is packed with statistics and graphics – well worth reading in full. Politico reports on an administration initiative that made the situation worse, not better.

McClatchy’s reported surge might not be real – it’s based on a comparison of August to April numbers, while comparison of August 2017 and August 2016 or of 2017 and 2016 year-to-date figures do not show andy such surge, Continue reading

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DHS plans huge expansion of social media information collection and other immigration news – September 27, 2017

Screen Shot 2017-09-26 at 8.27.45 PM

Adapted from Swipp, Inc. image under Creative Commons license.

DHS plans to start collecting social media information on all immigrants – including permanent residents and naturalized U.S. citizens – beginning October 18. The information will include  “social media handles and aliases, associated identifiable information and search results.” They may also collect social media information on any U.S. citizens who communicate with non-citizens. This huge expansion of DHS surveillance is planned despite the recent report of the Office of the Inspector General, which concluded that the social media gathering already underway (on visa applicants) lacked any criteria to determine whether it was effective.

The expansion was announced via publication of a proposed rule in the Federal Register, with a comment period on the rule to end October 18. The text of the proposed rule is here. Anyone can submit a public comment or read the comments already submitted. Go ahead – post a public comment! Continue reading

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