December 13, 2012
Maybe I am cynical, or perhaps paranoid, or both, but I sense that the administration may be juggling the financing of two immigration-related appeals systems in such a way as to encourage more immigration.
What follows is convoluted, a D.C.-based version of inside baseball; it may or may not reflect a deliberate bias. I have no evidence that it does, but it certainly looks that way.
One appeals system, if funded fully, would increase the outflow of deportees; another, if fully funded, would bring in additional immigrants, and bring them in more quickly. Read more...
December 12, 2012
One of the signal, continuing failures of U.S. immigration policy has been the practice of returning illegal aliens to just the other side of the U.S.-Mexican border when they are forced to leave the United States, rather than sending them deep into Mexico where most of them live.
Finding themselves thousands of miles from home, and probably broke, many of the once-captured illegals decide to try to enter the United States again and, of course, many succeed. Read more...
December 10, 2012
Those arguing for more immigration of high-skilled workers often trot out an argument that ties 1) securing patents with productivity, and then 2) ties the number of patents to the incidence of foreign workers.
In other words, the more foreign workers, the more patents, the more production, and hence more general prosperity for America. It sounds superficially plausible. Read more...
December 7, 2012
A hearing in a Los Angeles federal courtroom that started this week may cast some light on two quite different, but related, immigration-policy matters:
- A squalid program to exploit Filipino H-1B teachers and deny jobs to citizen teachers, run by a good-sized Louisiana school district; and
- The potential utility of using a class action lawsuit to correct the resulting abuses.
December 6, 2012
USCIS statistics released Wednesday reveal how seriously the new Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) amnesty has slowed work on all other agency programs.
That analysis does not come from the agency, but a simple review of the numbers shows the negative impact of the new caseload on the continuing work of USCIS. Apparently the agency has not added enough additional staff to cope with all the young people, primarily from Mexico, who entered the nation illegally before the age of 16, and who now want the short-term legal status offered by that program. Read more...
November 30, 2012
If you are worried about the over-population of America, as I am, you might have been cheered by this headline: "Report: U.S. birth rates hit record lows, largest drop among immigrant Latinas".
And you might have been puzzled by this text:
The numbers tell the picture quite clearly. Between 1990 and 2010, for example, the birth rate among U.S.-born Hispanic women dropped from 82.4 percent to 65.4 percent.
Wow! One hundred of these women used to have 82.4 babies a year, and now, 100 of them have only 65.4 babies a year? Read more...
November 30, 2012
Does our military establishment want to recruit anyone from the new set of amnesty grantees, those granted short-term legal status by Obama's Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program?
Given the White House's glowing description of this population of illegal aliens, those who arrived before the age of 16 and were under 31 on June 15 of this year, one might expect that the Department of Defense would look upon them as a useful addition to the pool of potential military recruits. Read more...
November 29, 2012
The Canadians are having a delightful and totally appropriate battle over foreign workers — coal miners from China.
Here's the situation: Read more...
November 27, 2012
If there is any legislative move on a version of the DREAM Act, a possibility Mark Krikorian discussed in a recent blog, we should insist on at least this one minimal requirement: every applicant must be interviewed, in person, by a USCIS officer — not by a consultant or by contract staff.
While the officer's decision might be subject to supervisory review, the original recommendation should carry substantial weight in the overall determination of the case. Read more...
November 26, 2012
If a report from the Congressional Research Service (CRS) implies that immigration law enforcement on the job site is minimal, you know it must be true. Read more...
November 21, 2012
Denial rates in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) amnesty are still being kept under wraps by USCIS, but some light was shed on related subjects recently; further, the agency earlier released some numbers on non-DACA denial rates.
As many have noticed, USCIS is much more likely to talk about case volume (receipts) or grants (approvals) than it is about denials of applications. This is in keeping with its self-image as a benefit-granting agency. Read more...
November 18, 2012
All too often we hear about the heart-rending story of the individual alien, often illegal, who loses a battle with the immigration-management system. The tale is about the high school valedictorian who wants to become a priest or a physician (for instance) who is about to be deported. But we never hear about how many others would have to be granted legal status if this one case were to become a precedent.
In other words there is a journalistic focus on the attractive individual alien, with no thought of the larger picture. Read more...
November 14, 2012
All too often we read that immigration fraud has been detected years, even decades, after the event.
But our British colleagues have just reported the prevention of a case of immigration-related marriage fraud before it occurred.
Part of the story apparently relates to a heads-up marriage license clerk, and part to an underlying British immigration policy situation that is different from ours and which I will get to later. Read more...
November 13, 2012
While my colleagues are (appropriately) doing the heavy lifting regarding the immigration policy implications of the recent elections, we might focus on some of the immigration policy anomalies that result from the hugely complicated rules and regulations on the subject. Some of those rules are in the federal sphere, some the states' sphere, and some in both. Read more...
November 9, 2012
Though the ICE press release does not acknowledge it, federal investigators from that agency and the Department of Labor (DoL) have uncovered and corrected a huge H-1 problem that had been missed by both USCIS and DoL — for a decade. Read more...
November 8, 2012
This is one of those cases where one has to give the immigration lawyer involved credit for creativity … even though his client lost in the end.
Here is the situation from the U.S. District Court in the Southern District of Alabama: Andreas Andreason, Jr., a U.S. citizen, was on trial for immigration-related fraud in connection with his marriage to Katerina Petrasova, a Czech national, who was using the marriage to get a green card. (She was indicted, too.) Read more...
November 7, 2012
The elections — with one major exception — did little to change the composition of the immigration subcommittees in the House and Senate. Each subcommittee has, and probably will continue to have, 11 members. The leadership of each subcommittee will stay with the party that now holds it. Read more...
November 6, 2012
A candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives, indirectly linked to disgraced, mass-migration lobbyist Jack Abramoff apparently has lost; it is the first result of the day.
The returns (albeit partial) are available because the election took place on the other side of the International Date Line, in the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI), just north of Guam in the western Pacific. Read more...
November 5, 2012
Count on the American island territories to do things to the extremes, including in immigration matters. Consider, for example:
- The extreme proposed island constitution in the U.S. Virgin Islands
- The extreme proposed sentencing for an immigration crime in Guam; and
- The extreme power of employers and the extreme governor in the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI), just north of Guam.
November 1, 2012
One of the reasons we do not have more illegal immigration than we have already is because it is expensive in terms of money, human time, and skills and sometimes, sadly, human lives. Read more...
October 31, 2012
We often hear about the vast workloads and long delays in the various immigration court systems, but I have never heard a word about the large numbers of pointless, useless cases brought by the immigration bar that aggravate that problem.
Let me provide one stunning example — a Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) decision — published earlier this year. Read more...
October 26, 2012
A continuing political problem for the restrictionist movement is the relative absence of what should be a logical set of allies: African-Americans, Puerto Ricans, Native Americans, union members, the disabled, and perhaps gays.
Members of these groups — all to some extent discriminated against in the job market — benefit from tight labor markets, and perhaps the most important byproduct of restrictionism is the reduction of alien workers in the workplace, which would lead to a tighter labor market. Read more...
October 23, 2012
One might say that immigration marriage fraud runs in the family. Or one might say that here is a new (to me, at least) motivation for a phony marriage. You would be right on both counts in this newly concluded case from Virginia Beach, Va.
Several people are seriously at fault in this case, but the principal villain is neither the U.S. citizen groom in the case nor his (phony) Belorussian spouse.
That distinction belongs to Danil Lyapin who, among many other things, is the son of the bride (Natallia Liapina) and same-sex lover of the groom, Armondo Figueroa, who married the bride to please his male lover (an unusual motivation for marriage fraud). Danil wound up arranging his mother's phony marriage, thus becoming the lover of his own stepfather. Read more...
October 22, 2012
Here are a couple of problems: in each case a hostile force is using a secret device to advance its nefarious cause. In each case an English-speaking government wants to do something about it.
These are the challenges:
- During World War II the Germans had (for the time) a high-tech way to mask its military messages; they did so through the Enigma Code.
- Right now the Mexican drug cartels are using tunnels under the border to mask its delivery of illegal drugs, as well as some illegal aliens, into the United States.
The results of the two governments' efforts: Read more...
October 17, 2012
As we reported in an earlier blog, the staff of USCIS rejected a questionable set of immigrant investor applications, revoking some earlier decisions in the process, and brought down on the agency a court case filed by some of the biggest guns in the EB-5 business.
Acting swiftly, a federal district court judge sitting in California totally rejected the applicants' attempt to get a temporary restraining order against USCIS, though other elements of the case continue to be litigated. Read more...
October 15, 2012
Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Texas), the ranking GOP member of the Senate Judiciary Committee and the Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, respectively, have uncovered an outrageous, but not entirely surprising, feature of the way in which the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) amnesty program is being carried out. Read more...
October 12, 2012
It's the immigration policy version of the Royal Navy steaming out of Portsmouth Harbor on its way to the Falklands War; it means that an establishment is facing a serious challenge.
That's the image I had when I read the front-page, signed article in the September 24 issue of the immigration bar's trade paper Interpreter Releases by the grand old man of the immigration bar, Austin Fragomen, Jr. It is highly critical of a proposed set of procedures and forms for the H-1B program announced by the U.S. Department of Labor (DoL). The article is not available online, and it is one of the rare such treatments of a policy issue by IR. Read more...
October 10, 2012
We rarely see news photos of EB-5 investors, legitimate or illegitimate, but we almost did in yesterday's New York Times. EB-5 is the immigrant investor program.
The picture of Ofer Biton, the would-be EB-5 investor, was partially obscured by the large left hand of Bennett Orfaly, who has ties "to a member of the Gambino organized crime family", according to the paper. It is quite a picture and quite a story. Read more...
October 9, 2012
One of the troubles with those of us who focus on immigration policy in the United States is that we think almost exclusively about migration to this country, and forced migration (deportation) out of it. I must admit to being guilty of those narrow thought processes most of the time.
There are two other subjects, however, that should get more consideration than they get:
- Voluntary departures from the United States of both citizens and aliens, the subject of today's blog, and
- Immigration control techniques used by other democracies, to be dealt with later.