9/17: THIS WEEK IN IMMIGRATION
THIS WEEK IN IMMIGRATION
Task Force Submits Recommendations on DHS’s Flawed Secure Communities Program
Anyone following the saga surrounding Secure Communities—DHS’s flawed enforcement program that runs fingerprints through federal databases—can tell you that the program has been ripe with controversy since its inception in 2008. As DHS began to stray from the program’s original focus on criminal aliens—state and city leaders, police chiefs, immigration advocates, and congressional members blasted the agency for casting too broad a net and for its dubious implementation process. After tensions reached a boiling point in June, ICE Director John Morton created a 20-member task force to address growing concerns. This week, that task force submitted its final recommendations to the Homeland Security Advisory Council (HSAC)—recommendations that some former task force members say don’t go far enough. Read more...
Lamar Smith’s E-Verify Arguments Defy Logic and Lack Evidence
Facing opposition from the left and the right, Rep. Lamar Smith appears to be willing to do and say just about anything to pass his “Legal Workforce Act,” (H.R. 2885), which would make E-Verify mandatory for all U.S. businesses. Smith continues to tout E-Verify as a magic bullet that will create jobs for millions of American workers despite all evidence to the contrary. Read more...
Illinois County “Just Says No” to Costly Immigration Detainers
As public debate over Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) controversial enforcement policies continues, a county in Illinois recently voted against using one tool in ICE’s enforcement arsenal—immigration detainers. Detainers are requests (not commands) from ICE to local law enforcement agencies that ask local agencies to notify ICE prior to releasing an individual from custody. ICE issues detainers—which allow local agencies to retain individuals for 48 hours after scheduled release—so that they can determine whether individuals are subject to deportation and take them into federal custody. Last week, however, the Cook County Board of Commissioners voted 10-5 against honoring the voluntary immigration detainers, citing the prohibitive cost of detaining individuals. Read more...
Ten Years After 9/11, Is the U.S. Deporting Those Who Threaten to Do Us Harm?
This past weekend, the U.S. commemorated the ten-year anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Life and travel in the U.S. has changed in some significant ways over the past decade, and many observers have noted that immigration policy, in particular, has been deeply affected. The fact that the terrorists were foreign nationals that arrived legally in the U.S. on visas prompted action, including the creation of the Department of Homeland Security, stepped up enforcement along the border, additional scrutiny for visa applicants, and increased partnerships with state and local law enforcement agencies. But ten years later, is the U.S. actually deporting those who threaten to do us harm? Read more...
Experts Challenge Conventional Wisdom on Border Security
No one should be shocked by this election season’s default response to immigration questions, “We must secure the border.” It’s the same tired sound bite as last election cycle. While border security might make for an easy rhetorical punching bag, it seems to be an area the most vocal politicians know the least about and a topic they care little about fixing. If politicians were serious about securing the border, they would be too busy bringing down drug cartels to blame undocumented immigrants for all of our border woes—or so say former Arizona Attorney General Terry Goddard and anthropologist Josiah Heyman in papers released this week. Read more...
This Week in Council Publications:
- Guns, Drugs, and Money: Tackling the Real Threats to Border Security by Prof. Josiah Heyman (IPC Perspectives, September 2011)
- How to Fix a Broken Border: Hit the Cartels Where It Hurts (Part I) by former Arizona Attorney General Terry Goddard (IPC Perspectives, September 2011)
- Watch Goddard
and Heyman's border discussion at the Woodrow Wilson
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