Immigration Blog

Unsecured Border: Interview with Linda Vickers, Rancher

By Jerry Kammer, June 26, 2014

View the Full Series

Linda Vickers says most of the people who hike across her ranch about 70 miles north of the Mexican border try to move through quickly, quietly, and inconspicuously. They want only to circumvent the Border Patrol checkpoint nearby on Highway 281 and to rendezvous with a smuggling vehicle, which is often driven by gang members from Houston that have joined the lucrative smuggling trade. Read more...

The Remarkable Creativity of Those Seeking to Violate Immigration Law

By David North, June 26, 2014

If we could only channel the remarkable creativity of those seeking to violate immigration law into other, better, endeavors, there would be shuttle planes flying to and from Mars — right now.

In a recent posting I told how one alien had successfully used a phony divorce to secure a green card, while another had been thwarted in the same maneuver. Not a phony marriage, which is not very creative, but a phony divorce. Read more...

A Mess of the Administration's Making

By James R. Edwards Jr., June 25, 2014

The tidal wave of illegal alien young people that's buffeting our southern border seems to be nothing other than a "crisis" of the Obama administration's own making. What would you expect to happen, given the clear pro-amnesty signals and unilateral disarmament perpetrated by this administration for more than five years? Read more...

Clarification About the Lone ALJ Working on Employer Sanctions Appeals

By David North, June 25, 2014

About a month ago I bemoaned the fact that the administration's enforcement of employer sanctions (i.e., private employers are barred from hiring illegal aliens) is so feeble that a single administrative law judge (ALJ) could handle all the administrative appeals stemming from that enforcement.

One in the whole country. Her name is Ellen K. Thomas.

Well, I understated my case and I want to correct it. It is worse than that. Read more...

Will Taxpayer-Funded Defense of Illegal Aliens in Deportation Become the Norm, Despite the Law?

By Dan Cadman, June 24, 2014

What do you call a leader who, acting through his sundry ministers and counselors, ignores parliament and creates programs out of will and whimsy if the legislature does not enact laws when-and-as he wishes? A leader who, not liking all laws equally, decides which to ignore and which to enforce, and under what circumstances he will do so? In any other country, we would call that man "despot". Here in the United States these days, we call him president.

A few days ago, the New York Times reported that Attorney General of the United States Eric Holder was going to provide $2 million in federal grant funds to aid groups in providing legal representation to aliens caught up in the recent southern border surge of women and minors. Read more...

U.S. Sheepherders Finally Win a Round in Court

By David North, June 24, 2014

Perhaps the worst case of exploitation of foreign workers, and the exclusion of American workers, comes with the job of sheepherding on western ranches, where near-medieval working conditions prevail, as we have noted in the past.

Earlier this month the DC Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in favor of the resident herders and did so in ringing tones: Read more...

Questions about the Surge of Unaccompanied Illegal-Alien Minors

By Ronald W. Mortensen, June 24, 2014

Much has been written about the large numbers of unaccompanied minors illegally entering the United States. However there are a myriad of questions that need to be asked and answered about the effect that this will have on the United States. Here are a couple of dozen:

Who Is Paying?

  1. Are American taxpayers covering the $1.4 billion to $2 billion costs to care for children illegally entering the United States while still continuing to provide hundreds of millions of dollars of foreign assistance to the home countries of these children?

CIS Gets an Offer We Will Refuse from a Bangladeshi Organization

By David North, June 21, 2014

We at the Center for Immigration Studies have just received an offer, via e-mail, from a recruiting agency in Bangladesh that we, absolutely, plan to refuse.

The offer appears to be that if we hire someone from that country, selected by that agency, and arrange for a visa, that agency will pay us for our services. Read more...

The Border Crisis and the Question of Who Gets What

By Jerry Kammer, June 21, 2014

They say government is the process of deciding who gets what. For an example of how that is playing out today, consider the interplay among the New York Times editorial position on the crisis at the Texas border, Times readers outraged at what they see as the newspaper's errant liberalism, and a plea from New Mexico Senator Tom Udall (D) regarding unmet needs of Native American children. Read more...

Quick, What's the Annual Level of Legal Immigration?

By David North, June 20, 2014

My colleague, Mark Krikorian, recently made the point that few Americans have any idea of the actual level of immigration to this country — currently about a million a year.

With that in mind I decided to run a tiny test of that notion at what I thought was a collection of bright, well-educated, well-traveled people — we were all attending a cocktail party on Embassy Row. Read more...

Central American Leaders Seek U.S. Reform while Their Own People Seek Security at Home

By Jerry Kammer, June 19, 2014

The president of El Salvador has announced that when he and other Central American leaders meet Friday with U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, he will push for U.S.immigration reform to provide legal status for illegal immigrants and allow the children they left behind to join them. Read more...

Let's Press Mexico Regarding Those Young Central Americans

By David North, June 19, 2014

An important skill for political leaders is knowing how to use leverage to get someone else to do one's own dirty work. It's the kind of thing LBJ did all the time.

The Kings of Saudi Arabia have for years saved their people from fighting wars by conning America into doing its fighting, as in the First Gulf War, for example, just as the Brits used to employ Gurkhas for jungle fighting. Australia hires Papua-New Guinea to house its refugees; the list goes on.

Let's do a little of this ourselves, vis-a-vis the surge of young Central Americans now flooding into south Texas after long trips through Mexico. Let's cause Mexico to control its own southern border, to prevent this migration. Read more...

ICE Criminal Alien Releases Continue; Still No Details from DHS

By Jessica Vaughan, June 19, 2014

Last week, DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson told the Senate Judiciary committee that, weeks after the revelation that ICE freed 36,000 convicted criminal aliens last year, he is still trying to understand what happened, and declined to provide the senators with further details on who, when, where, and why the criminal aliens were freed.

Meanwhile, the criminal alien releases continue. ICE records reveal that the total number of non-detained convicted criminal aliens has grown by nearly 17,000 since the end of last fiscal year. Read more...

Obama's Policies Are Responsible for the Flood of Children in Texas

By Mike Nicley, June 18, 2014

Before the immigration crisis is over in Texas, hundreds of thousands of illegal aliens, many of them minors, will have entered the U.S. illegally from Mexico this year. A large portion of the illegal aliens are from El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras. The Obama Administration has blamed the overwhelming influx on gang violence and poverty. Hogwash. The living conditions in the source countries have been stable for years. There is certainly violence and abject poverty in Central America, but there has been no change in living conditions that would prompt an unprecedented exodus of children. Read more...

Central American Migration Surge and Dovish Republicans

By David Seminara, June 18, 2014

Why are women and children from Central America flocking to South Texas to the tune of nearly 50,000 apprehensions on the Southwest frontier so far this year? The Obama administration contends they are fleeing poverty and escalating drug violence in Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador. Plenty of others, myself included, think the primary driver is, as Center for Immigration Studies Executive Director Mark Krikorian recently put it, the administration's "various de facto amnesties for illegal aliens and its permissive enforcement practices." I'm an independent who leans more to the left on most issues, but my experience as a consular officer at the State Department leads me to believe that the Obama administration's contention is mostly bogus. Read more...

We Know about Sham, Immigration-Related Marriages, but How about Divorces?

By David North, June 18, 2014

Phony marriages designed to create illicit visas are well-known, and we have written about them frequently. How about sham divorces entered into for the same motivations?

That may sound unlikely, but the Sixth Circuit just ruled that the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) was right when it rejected a legalization (adjustment of status) plea from someone who had engaged in a phony divorce for immigration purposes. Read more...

The News from Honduras: Smugglers Cash in by Spreading Word of Amnesty

By Jerry Kammer, June 17, 2014

The mass exodus of Hondurans to the U.S. border is being promoted by smugglers who are spreading the word that the United States is planning an amnesty for illegal immigrants, according to a Honduran government official.

The smugglers "are sweet talking the mothers and families with the idea that, with the immigration reform the [U.S.] government will carry out, the people will have the opportunity to enter the United States and receive a permit to live in the country," Aracelly Calderon of the Honduran Center for the Care of Returned Migrants told the Spanish newspaper El Pais. Read more...

The Best Way to Return the Youngsters to Central America – Via Greyhound

By David North, June 17, 2014

It's not going to happen, but here's the best way for the United States to start returning those illegal alien youngsters to Central America:

By a caravan of big, ominous-looking Greyhound buses – all carrying large signs in Spanish saying something like "the young ones are back." Read more...

The Wages of Amnesty, Pt. 2

By Mark Krikorian, June 16, 2014

You want to know what would happen if we were to pass something like the Schumer-Rubio amnesty-before-enforcement bill? Take a look at South Texas, where nearly 50,000 unaccompanied juveniles (most of them 15- to 17-year-old boys) have been apprehended by the Border Patrol so far this year, with perhaps 140,000 expected next year. And the number of families with children is even larger. They're coming in response to this administration's various de facto amnesties for illegal aliens and its permissive enforcement practices. Passage of Schumer-Rubio would turn the dial up to eleven. Read more...

The Wages of Amnesty, Pt. 1

By Mark Krikorian, June 16, 2014

Critics of the president's illegal DREAM amnesty (known as Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA) warned that it would create backlogs for legal immigrants. As the result of administrative fiat in 2012 rather than actual, you know, law, no funds could be appropriated to run it, meaning immigration officers who would otherwise be processing legal immigration paperwork were pulled off that and assigned to amnestying the 500,000-plus illegal aliens who claim to have arrived before their 16th birthday. Read more...

Indicted Pharmacists Were Heavy Users of H-1B

By David North, June 16, 2014

This is a story of how a highly prosperous — for a while — retail pharmacist cheated the Medicare and Medicaid programs out of millions with one hand, while chiseling his own H-1B workers with the other.

It is another account of multiple misuses of immigration and other federal programs, all by the same co-conspirators. Read more...

Jorge Ramos Foresees "Explosion of Migrants" as Word of White House Border Policy Spreads in Central America

By Jerry Kammer, June 15, 2014

For several weeks, despite mounting evidence to the contrary, the Obama administration has insisted that its policies have had little influence on the surge of Central American children – alone or with parents – across the Texas border. The White House Domestic Policy Council, under the direction of Cecilia Munoz, has asserted that the swelling influx (and growing humanitarian crisis in South Texas) is actually a response to the violence and poverty in Guatemala, El Salvador, and Honduras. Read more...

The Border Crisis in Texas: How the Media Report the Story

By Jerry Kammer, June 13, 2014

(Part one of an occasional series)

In the ongoing battle to frame the story at the Texas border, the Obama administration is winning with much of the media. Many journalists have joined the White House in framing the story only as a humanitarian crisis. They focus their concern on an undeniably poignant human drama that involves many unaccompanied minors fleeing violence and poverty in Central America who cross the border illegally into the U.S. Many seek to rejoin parents who have already completed that perilous journey.

The administration's constricted frame of causation makes no room for the problem of U.S. policies that have become common knowledge throughout Central America. These policies have become a powerful engine, pulling large numbers of adults and children across the Rio Grande. Read more...

Do Amnesty Backers Really Support Future Enforcement? A Thought Experiment

By Dan Cadman, June 13, 2014

The media and blogosphere have been hot with the news of the GOP primary upset of House Majority Leader Eric Cantor. There is more spin out there now than on 1,000 knuckleballs.

I imagine that those who want amnesty will downplay the linkage between Cantor's downfall and immigration matters, saying instead that he was out of touch with voters in his district. It is not in their interest to draw any immigration-related conclusions from his defeat. Read more...

Many EB-5 Middlemen – Pledged to Create Jobs for Americans – Hire Aliens

By David North, June 13, 2014

The immigrant investor (EB-5) program is supposed to use aliens' money to create jobs for Americans, but many government-licensed middlemen in the program are on public record as preferring to hire temporary foreign workers in their own shops rather than citizens or green card holders.

This is, strictly speaking, legal, but it certainly runs counter to both public policy and the administration's cheerful characterization of the program. Read more...

View from the Border

By Mark Krikorian, June 12, 2014

I received the following e-mail from a Texas state official who recently toured the border area where the mass crossings are taking place. This is an excerpt from his note (he asked that his name be withheld): Read more...

Illegal Aliens Receive Immediate Medical Care; Veterans Left to Die

By Ronald W. Mortensen, June 12, 2014

In response to an influx of young illegal aliens, the Obama administration has moved rapidly to provide them with a full range of medical and other services. In response to the needs of American veterans, the president has failed to keep campaign promises made seven years ago. Read more...

Immigration Court Evasions
High Numbers and the Deceptive Accounting that Hides Them

By Mark Metcalf, June 12, 2014
High Numbers and the Deceptive Accounting that Hides Them

Since 1996, America's immigration courts, part of the Department of Justice, have hidden high evasion rates through accounting tricks that, if used in private industry, would send a CPA to prison. Clever deception is found throughout the courts' annual reports to Congress. Better known as the Executive Office for Immigration Review Statistical Yearbook, it is a yearly masterpiece that in many instances blurs the reality of a court system not coming to grips with the dynamics of porous borders and feeble government responses to problems years in the making. Read more...

NPR Gets It Right after Helping White House Get It Wrong

By Jerry Kammer, June 12, 2014

NPR reporter John Burnett this morning helped correct a record that has been distorted in many news accounts about the ongoing surge of illegal immigration from Central America.

"The Border Patrol has in recent months been overwhelmed by a wave of poor migrants, some of them unaccompanied children as young as six," Burnett reported.

If you listened to NPR over the past week, you would have thought the influx comprised only children — youngsters as young as six who make the dangerous journey in a heart-wrenching search for parents already in the United States. While NPR wasn't the only news organization to frame the story this way, it was perhaps the most prominent in the distortion, especially in the descriptions provided by its anchors in Washington as they introduced stories and interviewed reporters in the field. Read more...