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  1. With Obama's immigration legacy, Trump inherits 'home free magnet' by Nolan Rappaport


    © Getty

    President Barack Obama focused his immigration enforcement program on aliens who have been convicted of crimes in the United States, aliens who have been caught near the border after making an illegal entry, and aliens who have returned unlawfully after being deported.

    This was eminently sensible, but the way he implemented this policy is another matter.

    Read more at

    http://thehill.com/blogs/pundits-blo...erits-our-home

    Published originally by The Hill.

    About the Author
    Nolan Rappaport
    was detailed to the House Judiciary Committee as an Executive Branch Immigration Law Expert for three years; he subsequently served as the immigration counsel for the Subcommittee on Immigration, Border Security, and Claims for four years. Prior to working on the Judiciary Committee, he wrote decisions for the Board of Immigration Appeals for twenty years. He also has been a policy advisor for the DHS Office of Information Sharing and Collaboration under a contract with TKC Communications, and he has been in private practice as an immigration lawyer at Steptoe & Johnson.





  2. Could America Turn Back Toward the Coolidge Era "Nordics-Only" 1924 Act Immigration Quotas in the Coming Years? Roger Algase

    This comment will continue and expand on a topic I introduced in my January 4 ilw.com comment: How secure will the future of employment-based immigration be under Jeff Sessions as the new Attorney General?

    http://blogs.ilw.com/entry.php?9621-...l-Roger-Algase

    In my previous comment, I referred to an immigration "Handbook" that Senator Jeff Sessions (R-Alabama), now to become the new Attorney General, prepared and distributed to his fellow Congressional Republicans in January, 2015, outlining his views on immigration policy objectives which he believed should be given priority. See:

    http://www.sessions.senate.gov/publi...h-congress.pdf

    On page 10 of his "Handbook", Sessions made reference to a 1920's Coolidge era law which, ostensibly, had its main purpose as tightening the labor market in order to boost wages of American workers that had been driven down by too large an influx of immigrant workers.

    The reality is, that as anyone who has the slightest knowledge of US immigration history knows full well, the main purpose of that law, the Johnson-Reed Immigration Act of 1924, was to exclude most, if not all, immigrants who were not from the "Nordic" countries of Western Europe, in pursuit of openly racial goals.

    No one could possibly know the background and history of that law better than Attorney-General designate Sessions himself, who, according to virtually all media reports, is one of Trump's closest advisers on immigration and who, as Attorney General, will have enormous power over America's immigration system.

    First, let us look at Sessions' own statement in his "Handbook", possibly one of the most disingenuous statements made about a major piece of immigration legislation by any politician or other public figure in modern times:

    On page 10 of the Handbook, Sessions states:

    "There had been a great wave of immigration in the four decades leading up to the Coolidge administration. This substantial increase in the labor pool had created a loose labor market that tilted the balance of power to large employers over everyday workers."

    Let us pause at this point and ask whether Sessions, who claims to be so concerned about whether immigration has "tilted the balance of power to large companies over everyday workers" , has ever supported legislation protecting the rights of everyday workers in dealing with employers of any size, such as the right to join labor unions.

    The answer is a resounding no, according to the AFL-CIO:

    http://www.ontheissues.org/Domestic/...sions_Jobs.htm

    Sessions continues (on page 10 of his Handbook) as follows:

    "Coolidge believed it was rational and sensible to swing the pendulum back toward the average wage-earning American."

    Certainly Coolidge "swung the pendulum back". But it was not swung back toward raising the wages or living standards of American workers. There is little if any historical evidence that this was a genuine concern for Coolidge, who had become famous for his union busting tactics against the Boston police in 1919 as Governor of Massachusetts.

    http://www.americanheritage.com/cont...dent?page=show

    The "pendulum" that Sessions is talking about in his above statement was instead swung back toward orienting America's immigration system back toward northern Europe and putting an end to or reversing the great wave of Italian, Jewish and eastern European immigration which had taken place during the previous four decades, beginning in the 1890's.

    This is why, as shown in more detail below, the "national origins" immigration quotas imposed under the 1924 law were based on the relative ethnic origins of America's population, not in 1920, the most recent census year before the law was passed, but in 1890 (!) 30 years earlier and before the big increase in Catholic and Jewish immigration from southern and eastern Europe had begun.

    After signing the Johnson-Reed Immigration Act of 1924 (more details about which appear below), Coolidge issued a proclamation. (See note 1, below) fixing the annual immigration quotas for immigrants who were born in the various countries of the world (other than "Western Hemisphere" countries, which were not affected by the quotas and did not account for a high percentage of US immigration at that time) according to the following typical examples:

    a) Germany: 51,227
    b) India: 100
    c) Great Britain and Northern Ireland: 34, 007
    d) China: 100
    e) Sweden: 9.561
    f) Japan: 100
    g) Norway: 6,443
    h) South Africa: 100


    Of course, as everyone knows, including, without the slightest possible doubt, Sessions himself, these obviously racially "tilted" quotas were not only biased against immigrants from Asia and Africa - they also almost entirely excluded immigrants from eastern Europe, with its large Jewish population and from mainly Catholic Southern Europe.

    The annual quota for Catholic Italy, for example was 3,845, about one tenth of the quota for Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and the annual quota for Russia, home to many Jews, was only 2,248, about 4 percent of the annual quota for Germany.

    (One can safely guess that immigration policies toward Russia may be considerably more generous under our new president than they were under President Coolidge!)

    Most of the smaller countries of southern and eastern Europe were also limited to law's minimum per country quota of 100 immigrants to the US per year.

    Why was there such an enormous bias in favor of the "Nordic" countries of Western Europe? As is beyond any serious dispute, and as Attorney-General designate Sessions cannot possibly be unaware, this was because of the racial thinking which was so prevalent in America of Coolidge's time.

    This is explained succinctly, and at the same time in great detail, in an article by Tanya Kateri Hernandez of Fordham Law School in 76 Oregon Law Review 731 (1997) with an extremely lengthy title beginning as follows:

    Construction of Race and Class Buffers in the Structure of Immigration Controls and Laws...

    For the abstract, see:

    http://ir.lawnet.fordham.edu/faculty_scholarship/25

    Hernandez writes: (76 Or. L Rev. at 740):

    "The Immigration Act of 1924 restricted immigration on the basis of national origin and set quotas which favored immigrants from northern and western Europe. The legislation was tied to the rise of the pseudo-science of eugenics.

    During the House hearings on the Act, genetic theories concerning the superiority of White Nordic persons and the inferiority of all others were the prominent arguments for selective immigration. Representative Robert Allen of West Virginia stated: 'The primary restriction for the alien stream, however, is the necessity for purifying and keeping pure the blood of America.'"

    What does this have to do with Sessions' baseless and unsubstantiated claim that the main reason for passing the 1924 immigration act was to boost the wages of American workers?

    My next post will show how Trump, if he decides to do so, already has the power under INA Section 212(f) to reinstate the 1924 racial "national origin" immigration quotas, or impose a system resembling it, simply by presidential proclamation.

    This would effectively gut the 1965 immigration reform law which abolished the whites-only immigration regime of a century ago, a reform law which Trump indirectly criticized himself in his August 31 2016 Arizona immigration speech.

    Roger Algase
    Attorney at Law
    algaselex@gmail.com

    Updated 01-16-2017 at 06:07 PM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

  3. Our immigration court crisis will be Trump's lasting headache, by Nolan Rappaport


    © Getty

    A recent editorial in the Washington Post claims that America’s immigration courts are a “diorama of dysfunction.”
    The 300 judges have a backlog that totals more than 500,000 cases. The judges are scheduling hearings two and three years in the future. And the courts are places of “Dickensian impenetrability, operating under comically antiquated conditions.”
    ......
    Perhaps immigration adjudications should be moved from the Executive Branch to the Judicial.

    Read more at --
    http://thehill.com/blogs/pundits-blo...sting-headache

    Published initially in the Hill.

    About the Author
    Nolan Rappaport was detailed to the House Judiciary Committee as an Executive Branch Immigration Law Expert for three years; he subsequently served as the immigration counsel for the Subcommittee on Immigration, Border Security, and Claims for four years. Prior to working on the Judiciary Committee, he wrote decisions for the Board of Immigration Appeals for twenty years. He also has been a policy advisor for the DHS Office of Information Sharing and Collaboration under a contract with TKC Communications, and he has been in private practice as an immigration lawyer at Steptoe & Johnson.

    Updated 01-17-2017 at 09:48 AM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

  4. Give DREAMers a break, hardliners a bone with GOP immigration bill. By Nolan Rappaport


    It has been more than 30 years since the passage of the last comprehensive immigration reform bill, the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 (IRCA). The main reason for this, probably, is the fact that the Democrats have refused to go along with the Republican demand for effective interior enforcement of our immigration laws.

    IRCA was based on an agreement to create a legalization program for undocumented immigrants who already were in the country in return for interior enforcement measures that would prevent a new group of undocumented immigrants from taking the place of the ones being legalized.

    The Democrats got a legalization program, but the enforcement measures the Republicans were supposed to get were never fully implemented.

    …..

    Senator Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) has provided the Democrats with a chance to show that they are ready again to accept a bill that includes effective enforcement measures. He has introduced a bill that combines serious enforcement provisions the Republicans want with benefit provisions the Democrats want.

    To read the rest of the article, go to –
    http://thehill.com/blogs/pundits-blo...dliners-a-bone

    Published originally on The Hill.

    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    About the Author
    Nolan Rappaport was detailed to the House Judiciary Committee as an Executive Branch Immigration Law Expert for three years; he subsequently served as the immigration counsel for the Subcommittee on Immigration, Border Security, and Claims for four years. Prior to working on the Judiciary Committee, he wrote decisions for the Board of Immigration Appeals for twenty years. He also has been a policy advisor for the DHS Office of Information Sharing and Collaboration under a contract with TKC Communications, and he has been in private practice as an immigration lawyer at Steptoe & Johnson.

    Updated 01-12-2017 at 10:19 PM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

  5. Will Attorney General Jeff Sessions use INA Section 274 to prosecute US citizens for supporting immigrant rights? Roger Algase

    This comment will continue a discussion of the possible use of INA Section 274 to harass and intimidate US citizens and other immigrant rights supporters though criminal prosecutions that was begun in my September 26, 2016 Immigration Daily blog post. See:

    http://blogs.ilw.com/entry.php?9464-...l-Roger-Algase

    Jeff Sessions, who is Donald Trump's choice to be the chief law enforcement officer of the United States in the post of Attorney General, and who will have wide power to prosecute immigration violations as criminal, not just civil offenses, has a history as a U.S. Attorney of using the criminal laws to attempt to punish and intimidate activists who tried to assist minority US citizens in exercising their right to vote.

    As Attorney General, will Sessions use an expanded interpretation of an already very broad criminal statute, INA Section 274, as a weapon against immigration advocates who try to help minority immigrants assert their rights or protect themselves against deportation?

    Based on his past conduct in a 1985 Alabama voting rights case, his call for more prosecutions under INA Section 274 in his recent letter to Attorney General Loretta Lynch, and his antipathy toward immigrants from outside Europe as expressed in a 2015 memorandum he sent to fellow Congressional Republicans, there is every reason to believe that he will do so.

    USA today reports that in 1985, while he was the US attorney for Mobile, Sessions brought voting fraud charges against three activists for African-American voting rights, including a former adviser to Martin Luther King Jr., for allegedly altering ballots.

    The defendants claimed that they were only trying to assist poor, elderly or illiterate voters who were having problems understanding and casting their ballots. More than half of the charges were dismissed by the presiding judge without being submitted to the jury, which promptly acquitted the defendants of all the remaining charges.

    http://usat.ly/2g6x73n


    Fast forward to July, 2016, when Sessions, together with his fellow Alabama Republican Senator, Richard Shelby, sent a letter to President Obama's Attorney General, Loretta Lynch, accusing the federal government of being complicit in "criminal conspiracies" to violate the immigration laws, and in effect, demanding that there be more criminal prosecutions for immigration violations under Section 274.

    At issue in the letter was the Obama administration's practice of releasing many of the unaccompanied minor children from Central America who had entered the US to pursue asylum claims to the custody of relatives who are already in the US, rather than summarily sending the children back to their gang violence ridden countries.

    Sessions' letter called for prosecution under Section 274 of the same relatives to whose custody these children were being released. His letter states:

    "Section 274 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) 8 U.S.C. 1324 provides for the criminal prosecution of anyone who 'encourages or induces an alien to come to, enter, or reside in the United States, knowing or in reckless disregard of the fact that such coming to, entry or residence is or will be in violation of law,' anyone who 'engages in any conspiracy to do so,' or 'anyone who 'aids or abets the commission of such acts'."

    The letter then goes on to ask how many relatives ("sponsors") of these minor children have been prosecuted or convicted under INA Section 274.

    There could not be a clearer warning that not only unauthorized or "criminal" immigrants (including immigrants who may have been charged with but not actually convicted of any crime), but anyone in the United States, including a US citizen, who gives them any kind of support or assistance, could risk prosecution and a jail sentence.

    For a link to a full story and text of the letter in the Washington Examiner on July 7, 2016, see:

    http://nation.foxnews.com/2016/07/07...egal-relatives

    What kind of message will this send to immigration rights advocates? In the era of the new administration beginning on January 20, will America's immigration detention centers and prison camps soon start to fill up, not only with immigrants, but with American citizens who stand up for immigrants' rights or assist immigrants in asserting those rights?

    This question becomes particularly urgent in the face of clear indications contained in a January 2015 immigration "Handbook" that Sessions prepared and distributed to his Republican Congressional colleagues. In that manifesto, Sessions expresses high praise for the overtly racially biased immigration system that limited legal immigration to Northern Europeans almost exclusively for some 40 years beginning in 1924.

    For a link to the "Handbook" and more details about Sessions' support for America's "Nordics"-only pre-1965 immigration system, see my January 5 Immigration Daily comment:

    How secure will the future of legal employment-based immigration be under Jeff Sessions as the new Attorney General?

    http://blogs.ilw.com/entry.php?9621-...l-Roger-Algase

    Also, according to a January 6 news report, Sessions supported a draconian Alabama state immigration bill, HB 56, that was actually a harsher version of Arizona's notorious SB 1070 (most of which was thrown out in 2012 by the Supreme Court in Arizona v. US).

    http://www.alternet.org/activism/ala...ice-lashes-out

    This bill was described by the ACLU as:

    "...an extraordinary attempt to regulate every aspect of the lives of immigrants in Alabama."

    https://www.aclu.org/other/analysis-...protection-act

    For foreign and American citizens alike who are concerned about whether America will continue to be a nation of equal justice and opportunity for immigrants of all ethnic backgrounds, religious affiliations and areas of the world, the coming Trump/Sessions years are likely to be ones of very great challenges.

    There could be a strong possibility that there will be overt efforts (through legislation by a compliant Congress, or perhaps more likely by a presidential proclamation under INA Section 212(f) or some other kind of executive action) to change America's immigration system back to the mainly Europeans-only immigration system that was was in effect before 1965 (though very likely with much more liberal visa quotas for Russia and other countries of Eastern Europe than was the case under the quotas in effect prior to that year)!

    The coming years may also see considerably more intense efforts by the new administration than America has ever seen in the past to silence and intimidate immigrant rights supporters through the threat of federal criminal prosecutions or investigations, using the enormous powers that the Attorney General has over immigration enforcement.
    ____________________________
    Roger Algase is a New York immigration lawyer and a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School. He has been representing mainly skilled and professional immigrants for more than 35 years, based only on their qualifications and merit for receiving work visas and green cards under our laws, without regard to ethnicity, religion or national origin.

    Roger opposes any attempt to take America back to the pre-1965 immigration laws which favored immigrants of one particular ancestry or area of the world over all others. His email address is algaselex@gmail.com



    Updated 01-10-2017 at 09:55 AM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

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