Amid a protracted stalemate in Congress over immigration, President Joe Biden has opened a back door to allow hundreds of thousands of new immigrants into the country, significantly expanding the use of humanitarian parole programs for people escaping war and political turmoil around the world.
The measures, introduced over the past year to offer refuge to people fleeing Ukraine, Haiti and Latin America, offer immigrants the opportunity to fly to the United States and quickly secure work authorization, provided they have a private sponsor to take responsibility for them.
As of mid-April, some 300,000 Ukrainians had arrived in the United States under various programs — a number greater than all the people from around the world admitted through the official U.S. refugee program in the last five years.
By the end of 2023, about 360,000 Venezuelans, Cubans, Nicaraguans and Haitians are expected to gain admission through a similar private sponsorship initiative introduced in January to stem unauthorized crossings at the southern border — more people than were issued immigrant visas from these countries in the last 15 years combined.
The Biden administration has also greatly expanded the number of people who are in the United States with what is known as temporary protected status, a program former President Donald Trump had sought to terminate. About 670,000 people from 16 countries have had their protections extended or become newly eligible since Biden took office, according to a new report from the Pew Research Center.
SCOTUS Upholds Immigration Policy
Two wins! First:
The US supreme court has allowed the Trump administration to block immigrants seeking permanent residency in America on the basis of their likelihood to use public benefits such as housing assistance, healthcare and food stamps even for short periods of time.
Good. We welcome immigrants who are contributing to our national progress. We also welcome legitimate refugees in need of safe haven.
“It has become increasingly apparent that this court must, at some point, confront these important objections to this increasingly widespread practice,” Gorsuch stated.
“As the brief and furious history of the regulation before us illustrates, the routine issuance of universal injunctions is patently unworkable, sowing chaos for litigants, the government, courts, and all those affected by these conflicting decisions.”
Yes, the court must. It undermines our system of government if a single unelected federal judge can usurp the power of the Congress and/or the President by issuing a sweeping national injunction. The Supreme Court needs to reign in that practice.
Supreme Court Allows Asylum Rule to Go Into Effect
The U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday granted a request by President Donald Trump’s administration to fully enforce a new rule that would curtail asylum applications by immigrants at the U.S.-Mexico border, a key element of his hardline immigration policies.
The court said the rule, which requires most immigrants who want asylum to first seek safe haven in a third country through which they traveled on their way to the United States, could go into effect as litigation challenging its legality continues.
This is a very simple concept. If a person is truly in fear to the point that they are seeking asylum and safety, then you should seek safe haven in the first country you come to. If someone is fleeing Honduras, for example, and they traverse the entire length of Mexico to get to the U.S., they they aren’t really seeking asylum. They just want to emigrate to the U.S. That’s fine and there is a legal process for that.
SCOTUS Upholds Travel Ban
Excellent. Even though it is moot now, it was important to adjudicate the issue.
The US Supreme Court has ruled in favour of the Trump administration’s travel ban targeting people from several Muslim-majority countries.
Lower courts had deemed the ban unconstitutional, but the US top court has reversed this decision in a 5-4 ruling announced on Tuesday.
The ban prohibits most people from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria and Yemen from entering the US.
The court’s reversal is viewed as a victory for the Trump administration.
But the travel ban has been widely criticised by refugee and human rights groups.
Chief Justice John Roberts wrote the opinion, which said the travel ban was “squarely within the scope of Presidential authority”.
U.S. Withdraws from U.N. Immigration Compact
Good! It’s not about the policies. It’s about who gets to decide the policies. We should not be outsourcing our sovereignty to international bodies that do not have America’s interests at heart.
Continuing his “America First” approach to foreign policy, President Donald Trump has pulled the U.S. out of a United Nations compact seeking global cooperation to protect the safety and rights of refugees and migrants.
Trump’s decision to end America’s “participation in the Global Compact on Migration” was disclosed on Saturday by the U.S. Mission to the U.N. Nikki Haley, the U.S. ambassador to the U.N., explained in a statement that the pact’s “global approach” was “simply not compatible with U.S. sovereignty.”
“[O]ur decisions on immigration policies must always be made by Americans and Americans alone. We will decide how best to control our borders and who will be allowed to enter our country,” Haley said.
SCOTUS Allows Travel Ban
It’s moot now, but important to reestablish the point.
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court on Monday allowed the Trump administration to fully enforce a ban on travel to the United States by residents of six mostly Muslim countries.
This is not a final ruling on the travel ban: Challenges to the policy are winding through the federal courts, and the justices themselves ultimately are expected to rule on its legality.
But the action indicates that the high court might eventually approve the latest version of the ban, announced by President Donald Trump in September. Lower courts have continued to find problems with the policy.
Trump Calls for End of Visa Lottery
I’m with Trump on this one. It’s unfortunate that it took a terrorist attack to revisit this program.
US President Donald Trump has called for the green card lottery to be scrapped, saying it allowed the New York truck attack suspect into the US.
In a series of tweets he called for the immigration programme to be replaced with a merit-based system.
Mr Trump pinned blame for the scheme on Senator Chuck Schumer, who accused Mr Trump of cutting anti-terror funding.
Authorities have not yet confirmed how the suspect in Tuesday’s attack, Sayfullo Saipov, immigrated to the US.
Mr Trump tweeted on Wednesday morning: “The terrorist came into our country through what is called the ‘Diversity Visa Lottery Program,’ a Chuck Schumer beauty. I want merit based.
Chicago Area Community Organizer Admits to Being a Terrorist
It’s shocking how easily our immigration system can be defrauded.
(CNN)A Chicago-area resident who participated in two terror attacks in Israel in 1969 pleaded guilty Tuesday to having illegally obtained her American citizenship.
Rasmieh Odeh, 69, entered her plea Tuesday afternoon in federal court in Detroit, admitting she had been convicted in Israeli court in 1970 for her role in two bombings, and that she had willingly omitted that information from her US citizenship application.[…]Odeh was sentenced to life in prison by an Israeli military court in 1970 in connection with two bombs planted the previous year in Jerusalem by the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, according to court documents. One bomb killed two people at a supermarket. The other damaged the British Consulate in Jerusalem, but caused no injuries.Odeh, a Jordanian national, was later released from Israeli prison in 1979 as part of a prisoner transfer.[…]
Court documents state that Odeh is a community organizer with the Arab American Action Network. The group, a Chicago-area nonprofit, lists Odeh as an associate director on its website.
Mexico Rejects Mexicans
Under plans unveiled by the Trump administration on Tuesday, almost all people staying in the US illegally can be subject to deportation.
Mexican Foreign Minister Luis Videgaray said his country could not “accept unilateral decisions imposed by one government on another.”
But Mr Videgaray said on Wednesday: “We are not going to accept that because we don’t have to and it is not in the interest of Mexico.”
Mr Videgaray also warned the US about treatment of Mexican citizens.
“The Mexican government will not hesitate in going to international organisations, starting with the United Nations, to defend human rights, liberties and due process for Mexicans abroad according to international law.”
So here’s where we are… the Mexican government doesn’t want to allow its own citizens to return to Mexico, thus forcing deported Mexicans into a border purgatory, after which the Mexican government will go to the international organizations to blame America for it.
Americans Overwhelmingly Support Stiffer Immigration Enforcement
The poll shows that President Trump has broad public support in his effort to crack down on sanctuary cities.
A survey from Harvard–Harris Poll provided exclusively to The Hill found that 80 percent of voters say local authorities should have to comply with the law by reporting to federal agents the illegal immigrants they come into contact with.
The Harvard–Harris Poll survey found strong support for an overhaul of the nation’s immigration laws, with 77 percent saying they support comprehensive immigration reform against only 23 percent who oppose.
A majority — 52 percent — say they support Trump’s two executive orders allowing for the construction of a southern border wall, increasing the number of immigration officers by 10,000 and finding a way to revoke federal funds for sanctuary cities.
The crackdown on sanctuary cities is the most popular feature of those actions, followed closely by the directive to increase the border patrol, which is backed by 75 percent of voters.
Despite the overwhelmingly negative media coverage before and after the election on this issue, Americans overwhelmingly support Trump on this issue. The Democrats are signing an electoral death warrant to hook their wagon to an entire population that can’t legally even vote for them.
Trump Temporarily Bans Travelers From 7 Nations
The new Republican president on Friday put a four-month hold on allowing refugees into the United States and temporarily barred travelers from Syria and six other Muslim-majority countries. He said the moves would protect Americans from terrorism, in a swift and stern delivery on a campaign promise.
I admit that since the media and left has been in a constant state of outrage since Trump was elected, I have difficulty discerning what is truly worthy of outrage. In this case, I don’t see very much to be outraged about.
The ban is temporary as the DHS crafts more stringent vetting protocols. It only applies to nations that are rife with terrorists who want to kill Americans. OK, seems good so far. There is no inherent right for people to come to America and it is certainly prudent to do what we can to weed out people who want to kill us.
There does seem to be confusion over the reach of Trump’s order. It is being applied to prevent legal residents from reentering the U.S., but in reading the actual order, I don’t see any grounds for that application. If the intent was for it to apply equally to legal residents of the U.S., then that portion of it is wretched policy unworthy of our nation. If it is a misapplication of the order, then Trump needs to act quickly to make that clear.
U.S. Accidentally Admits 858 Possible Terrorists
Wonderful. If we took our borders seriously, these kinds of things would be far more rare and would be caught well before almost a thousand slipped through.
WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. government has mistakenly granted citizenship to at least 858 immigrants from countries of concern to national security or with high rates of immigration fraud who had pending deportation orders, according to an internal Homeland Security audit released Monday.
The Homeland Security Department’s inspector general found that the immigrants used different names or birthdates to apply for citizenship with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services and such discrepancies weren’t caught because their fingerprints were missing from government databases.
DHS said in an emailed statement that an initial review of these cases suggest that some of the individuals may have ultimately qualified for citizenship, and that the lack of digital fingerprint records does not necessarily mean they committed fraud.
The report does not identify any of the immigrants by name, but Inspector General John Roth’s auditors said they were all from “special interest countries” — those that present a national security concern for the United States — or neighboring countries with high rates of immigration fraud. The report did not identify those countries.
Trump’s Immigration Speech
Trump is finally approaching my opinion on immigration policy.
“For those here illegally today who are seeking legal status, they will have one route and one route only. To return home and apply for re-entry like everybody else under the rules of the new legal immigration system that I have outlined today,” the Republican presidential nominee said.He added: “There will be no amnesty.”“People will know that you can’t just smuggle in, hunker down and wait to be legalized — it’s not going to work that way. Those days are over,” Trump said.He did not commit to deporting every undocumented immigrant living in the US as he previously had, but vowed that immigrants living in the US illegally would never have a path to legal status under his presidency.
Ryan Won’t Advance Immigration Reform With Obama in Office
Shortly after becoming speaker on Thursday, Ryan said he wouldn’t bring immigration-related legislation to the House floor while Obama remains in office. Today, he explained his rationale in his first meeting as speaker with Wisconsin media via conference call.
It would be “ridiculous” to move on the issue when “a president that we can’t trust” is in office, Ryan said.
Walker Tells Illegal Alien to “Follow the Law”
PLAINFIELD, Iowa — As presidential hopeful Scott Walker toured a farm in this tiny town where he lived as a child, he was confronted by an undocumented worker from Mexico who is living in Wisconsin and demanded to know why Walker does not support President Obama’s plan to give temporary status to some undocumented workers, including parents of children who were born in the United States.
“We’re a nation of laws,” Walker, the Republican governor of Wisconsin, repeatedly told Jose Flores, 38, who was joined by two of his four children, Luis, 7, and Leslie, 13, who had tears rolling down her cheeks throughout the exchange. Flores, who lives in Waukesha and works for a medical supply factory, said he and his wife live in fear of being deported and separated from their children, who he said were all born in the United States.
“My point,” Walker said, “is that you have to follow the law, follow the process.”
Then Luis Flores jumped in: “Do you want me, like, to come home … come from school and my dad get deported?”
“No, that’s not what I’m talking about,” Walker said. “You mentioned Waukesha. I’ve got two nieces who go to school there as well. … I appreciate kids like you and kids like them, so that’s not what my point is. My point is that in America, nobody is above the law.”
Keep immigration safe, legal and common
My column for the West Bend Daily News is online. Here it is:
John Ashley was born in 1625 in Gloucester, England. He and his brother, William, competed hotly for the hand of Lady Jane Cooper with the understanding that the loser would leave the country for new adventures in the colonies. John won the lady’s hand and William headed for America. The lure of adventure was too much, and John and Jane followed William around 1650. They settled in Lancaster, Virginia, and had two sons, Thomas and Isaac, before passing away in 1671.
Further inland nestled in the shadow of the Blue Ridge Mountains near Roanoke, Virginia, lies the tiny Mount Union graveyard. If you look in the old section you will find the grave of Bryan McDonald II, who died in the summer of 1757. Bryan was born in Ireland sometime in 1686 and was brought to the colonies by his father, Bryan McDonald I. Bryan the Younger was married in New Castle, Delaware, and had 10 children with his wife, Catherine, including the aptly named Bryan McDonald III.
Eleven generations after John Ashley, and 10 generations after Bryan McDonald II, a goofy genetic brew conspired to produce me. John and Bryan are the most recent known immigrants in my family tree from my mother’s side and father’s side, respectively.
My American story, like that of almost every other American, begins with someone leaving one life behind to start a new one in what has been the world’s land of opportunity for more than 400 years: America. This is why Americans instinctively love immigrants and why the political debates over our immigration policy often becomes very emotional.
Gov. Scott Walker reintroduced a dormant aspect of the immigration debate last week with his comment that our legal immigration system should be based on, “first and foremost, protecting American workers and American wages.” Up until now, most of the immigration debate had centered on the problem with rampant illegal immigration, but Walker’s statement reminds us that there are also very different perspectives on how our legal immigration system should be managed.
Walker’s position is a populist, protectionist one that resonates with a lot of Americans who are in sectors of the economy that are threatened by new workers who are willing to work for less. But while Walker’s immigration policy position may be popular for some folks, it is also unworkable and harmful to America, which has long thrived by offering opportunity to new Americans, whether they be English, Irish, Italian, Chinese, Vietnamese, Indian, Kenyan, Brazilian or any other heritage.
The notion that protecting American jobs and wages should be the first priority is emotionally attractive, but it would require a costly army of bureaucrats to monitor and throttle immigrants based on what job they might aspire to and the relative impact on wages by industry, region and job role. A gargantuan apparatus like that cannot possibly be universally accurate or fair, thus further aggravating what is already a Byzantine immigration system that frustrates everyone and pushes more people to follow illegal paths to America.
Also, trying to protect Americans’ jobs and wages from immigrants is counterproductive and damaging in the long term. First, remember that legal immigrants are on a path to be Americans themselves. It is not foreigners competing for American jobs — it is new Americans competing with old Americans. Americans have traditionally thrived in competitive environments that sharpen our skills and abilities. It has been precisely this competitive spirit that has driven America’s ascension to the pinnacle of global success. If we remove the grindstone of competition from our labor economy, it will become dull.
Our immigration system should be as simple as possible. We should regulate immigrants to ensure that they are not terrorists, criminals or carrying some nasty disease. Then we should throttle the number of immigrants only by some broad measures to make sure we do not overwhelm our ability to absorb them in our schools, housing and general economy.
Our current legal immigration system is a mess. The answer is not to make it more complicated and difficult. Instead, we should make it easier, faster and cheaper for all aspiring Americans to navigate. We should make it easier to legally immigrate to America and harder to do it illegally.
(Owen Robinson is a West Bend resident.)
Obama Rejects Notion that Successors Would Have Identical Power
Yeah… setting a precedent of executive overreach is a bitch, ain’t it?
Stephanopolous asked: “How do you respond to the argument, a future president comes in and wants lower taxes. Doesn’t happen. Congress won’t do it; so he says ‘I’m not going to prosecute those who don’t pay capital gains tax.’”
“The truth of the matter is George,” said the President, haltingly, “The reason that we, have to do.. uhm prosecutorial discretion in immigration, is that we know, that we – are not even close to being able to deal with the folks who have been here a long time…” Obama then pivoted to immigration talking points, without addressing the original question.
“The vast majority of folks understand that they need to pay taxes, and when we conduct an audit, for example, we are selecting those folks who are most likely to be cheating,” said Obama. “We’re not going after millions and millions of people who everybody knows are here and were taking advantage of low wages as they’re mowing lawns or cleaning out bedpans, and looking the other way.”
“So you don’t think it’d be legitimate for a future president to make that argument?” Stephanopoulos said.
Obama: “With respect to taxes? Absolutely not.”
Here again I warn you liberals who are supporting Obama on his abuse of power. The pendulum will swing – likely in 2016 – and this power can be used to enact all sorts of things. Liberals are relying on the constraint of a conservative president to adhere to the constitution even where a liberal one did not. Sadly, not all conservatives feel such constraints. And conservatives who do aren’t going to feel very motivated to speak up after watching liberals lie down when Obama did it.
Alleged Cop Killer Is an Illegal Alien
The inevitable consequence of porous borders.
Los Angeles (CNN) — One of the suspects in a California shooting spree that left two sheriff’s deputies dead was deported to Mexico twice, according to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
Authorities say Marcelo Marquez, 34, of Salt Lake City, Utah, was arrested Friday after police found him in a home in Auburn, about 30 miles from the initial shooting. Also arrested was Jannelle Monroy, 38, of Sacramento County, who was allegedly with Marquez during the rampage, authorities said.
The rampage began in the parking lot of a $56-a-night motel outside downtown Sacramento when two sheriff’s deputies checked on a suspicious car there.
Authorities said by the time the spree was over on Friday, the suspects had killed two sheriff’s deputies in two counties, wounded a third deputy, attempted three car carjackings and shot a driver in the head — all during a span of six hours. Those events prompted a handful of school lockdowns and a massive manhunt.