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  1. ICE Director Who "Enjoyed" Tearing Families Apart, Arresting at Courts, Hospitals, Schools, and Threatening Sanctuary Officials Retires. Roger Algase

    Thomas Homan, the face and chief enforcer of Trump's draconian mass deportation agenda, who claims to have "enjoyed" his job of tearing mainly non-white, non-criminal immigrant families apart and instilling fear in immigrant communities

    while threatening to jail state and local officials who resisted going along with his 40 per cent increase in immigration arrests

    has announced that he is retiring "due to family considerations" (and, just incidentally, the fact that he had no hope of ever gaining Senate confirmation).

    One hopes that Homan will enjoy spending more time with his own family as much as he "enjoyed" breaking up hundreds, if not thousands, of immigrant families whose parents may never see their children again as a result of Homan's particular form of "enjoyment".

    Homan will also leave a Gestapo-like legacy of terrorizing immigrant communities by making arrests at courthouses, hospitals and schools, reinstating the pre-Obama practice of mass immigration raids, especially targeting states such as California which have adopted sanctuary policies; and targeting immigrant activists who dare to speak out against his policies, even as the number of deaths in immigrant detention centers from deplorable conditions and medical neglect continues to rise.

    For a comment on ICE courthouse arrests under Homan, see:

    And for a report on concentration-camp like conditions in immigrant detention centers, see:

    To be sure, ICE immigrant detention in Donald Trump's America has not equaled the horrors of Nazi camps such as Dachau and Buchenwald. Not yet.

    Roger Algase
    Attorney at Law

    Updated 05-01-2018 at 11:06 AM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

  2. Trump's Attacks On Caravan, Other Hispanics; and "Close Down the Country" Border Wall Threat are Leading the US Toward Dictatorship. Roger Algase

    Update, April 29 at 6:03 pm:

    In addition to threatening to "close down the country" if he doesn't receive the $25 billion he has demanded from Congress for border wall funding (see below), Trump has also turned the full force of his threats and invective against a "caravan" of several hundred harmless Mexican and Central American women and children who arrived at the US border on April 29 and are preparing to cross over to seek asylum in the US.

    These include threats by the administration to prosecute members of the caravan upon entry to the US, even though they have the right under US law to present asylum claims for adjudication; sending National Guard troops to the border, and various statements absurdly attempting to blow up the planned border crossing to the level of a purported major nationals security threat.

    Huffington Post quotes one of the pro-caravan demonstrators as saying that the Trump administration's:

    "...culture of hate, bigotry and fear cannot be accepted."

    My earlier comment appears below:

    In the latest indication that his racist remarks against Latinos and other immigrants of color are putting the US on the road to dictatorship, Donald Trump, at an April 28 rally, began by asking if there were any Hispanics present.

    The term "Hispanics", as the president may or may not know, includes not only an estimated 11 mainly Latino unauthorized immigrants, who studies show have a lower crime rate than native born Americans of all ethnic backgrounds, but also at least 40 million million US citizens, permanent residents and other legal immigrants.

    Current estimates are that Hispanics comprise about 17 per cent of the total population of America, including virtually the entire population of the US Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, which is still slowly and painfully recovering from the shameful neglect of the Trump administration in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria.

    That is a quite a large number of people to express hatred for by making making sure that not a single one of them was in the president's audience when he spoke.

    After being assured by a chorus of boos from his supporters that there were no Hispanics there (just as there were no Jews at Adolf Hitler's rallies, even though Trump, of course, does not support antisemitism, genocide or mass murder - there is a big difference in this regard), Trump then launched into a by now familiar tirade over the issue of funding for his favorite border wall.

    Trump began as follows with his virtually obligatory employment of the Big Lie technique which was also a major factor in the Nazi Fuehrer's rise to power; and which Trump makes abundant use of in almost every statement relating to immigration:

    "All of these people pouring across are gonna vote Democrat...we have to have borders and we need it fast"

    The fact that there is no evidence whatsoever that unauthorized immigrants vote in US elections except in very rare instances has never stopped the president from making this baseless and inflammatory charge.

    Then came his threat to "close down the country" if Congress refuses to provide funding for his border wall this coming September. There are two obvious "takeaways" from this:

    First, is the incontrovertible fact that Trump's border wall has little or nothing to do with national security, and everything to do with stoking racial hatred, in this case against Latinos, and, by extension, all other people of color, regardless of their immigration status or citizenship.

    Trump didn't ask whether there were any immigrants, authorized or otherwise, in the audience. He only asked whether there were "Hispanics" as members of a despised (by him) ethnic group. Second, and even more dangerously, Trump implied that he had one-man power to "close down the country", in other words, to do anything with America that he wants.

    Again, while comparisons with Hitler must always be made with extreme caution, one cannot overlook the resemblance with the German tyrant who identified the entire nation with his own person and its destiny with his own will.

    One also cannot disregard the resemblance between Trump's obsession with the border wall to keep Mexican and other Latin American immigrants out, and his similar fixation on upholding his ban on entry to the US by some 200 million citizens of almost 100 per cent Muslim countries which is now awaiting decision by a right wing dominated US Supreme Court.

    It is impossible to deny that stoking fear and hatred against Latino and Muslim immigrants played a major role in putting Donald Trump in the White House. Trump is now well on the way to exploiting the same racial prejudices and religious bigotry in order to bring about (to quote from his notorious December 2015 Muslim Ban campaign speech) a"complete and total shutdown" of democracy in America - just as Adolf Hitler did with the Jews in Germany.

    The Huffington Post's report on Trump's April 28 speech:

    Trump Asks If There Are Hispanics In The Room Before Demanding His Wall

    is available at

    Roger Algase
    Attorney at Law

    Updated 04-30-2018 at 11:01 AM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

  3. Trump's Attacks on Black Immigrants Are Causing Increase in Illegal Border Crossings to Canada by Nigerian and Haitian Asylum Seekers. Roger Algase

    Reporter Selena Ross writes in the April 28 Washington Post that there has been a sharp increase in the number of Nigerian immigrants who have entered the US with legal visitor visas and then crossed into Canada illegally to seek asylum in that country because they do not feel welcome in the United States.

    This has led to a paradoxical situation in which Canada, which has a reputation for being more accepting of diversity and multiculturalism as the basis for its immigration policies than Donald Trump's America has been, is now requesting the US to be stricter in granting visitor visas to applicants from Nigeria, so that they will not subsequently cross into Canada illegally to seek asylum there.

    Canada's reported attempt to pressure the US into making it harder for Nigerians to receive visitor visas has led to an outraged response from a US based advocacy group, Human Rights First, whose director of refugee protection, Eleanor Acer, said the following about the Canadian officials involved:

    "It's shocking and disappointing that they are trying to encourage another country to deny visas to people who are, in some cases, legitimately seeking protection from persecution."

    See: Nigerians are walking into Canada, prompting request for US to take action

    (I am sorry - I do not have a working link. Please go to Google to access.)

    But even though, according to the WP report, the US State Department has said that it will not change its current visa requirements in response to Canada's remarks, there are other reasons why Nigerian visitors to the US might feel less confident about filing asylum claims in in this country. This is despite that fact that at least some of these vistors may have valid asylum claims, due to recent instances of ongoing terrorism by Islamist extremists in Nigeria.

    The WP reports that US asylum approval rates are down in the past year, under the Trump administration. In addition, Trump's reported complaints that Nigerian visitors to the US are not "going back to their huts" and that they come from a "shithole country", which is not "like Norway", i.e. not white, are not exactly designed to make Nigerians with legal visitor visas feel that they could have much of a future in the United States.

    Therefore, even though the same article also reports that Canada's asylum system is far from friendly to Nigerians, with a high percentage of denials, there is good reason to expect that Canada may be seeing many more asylum-seeking African and Haitian immigrants coming across the border from the United States in the future.

    Roger Algase
    Attorney at Law

    Updated 04-30-2018 at 08:06 AM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

  4. When immigration judges get political, justice suffers. By Nolan Rappaport

    © Getty

    "Refugee Roulette"

    President Barack Obama’s immigration policies had the unintended consequence of encouraging illegal immigration. By focusing enforcement efforts primarily on aliens who had been convicted of serious crimes or who had been caught near the border after making an illegal entry, he created what I call a “home free magnet.”

    Aliens wanting to enter the United States illegally knew that they would be safe from deportation once they had reached the interior of the country unless they were convicted of a serious crime. This was a powerful incentive to do whatever was necessary to enter the United States.

    President Donald Trump destroyed this magnet with tough campaign rhetoric and his executive order, Enhancing Public Safety in the Interior of the United States, which greatly expanded enforcement priorities. No deportable alien is safe under Trump’s enforcement policies.

    But previous administrations have left Trump with another enforcement problem that he has not resolved yet.

    The immigration judges who decide whether an alien in removal proceedings will be deported have been selected by successive administrations with varying views on immigration enforcement, which has produced an immigration court of 350 judges who have conflicting views on how immigration law should be applied.
    According to a Reuters analysis of thousands of immigration court decisions, whether an alien in removal proceedings is allowed to remain or is deported depends largely on which immigration judge hears his case and where the hearing is held.


    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 an 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 20 years.

  5. Supreme Ct. Justices' Questions Show Real Reason for Muslim Ban is Bigotry, not "Trumped-Up" Security Window Dressing. Roger Algase

    The conventional wisdom, based on numerous instant armchair analysis articles by mainly non-lawyer journalists appearing immediately after the April 25 Supreme Court oral argument in the Muslim Ban case Hawaii v. Trump (which the media misleadingly insist on calling a "travel ban" even though the nearly 200 million Muslims who are banned from entering the US under the president's latest version of his executive order are free to travel anywhere else in the world that they wish), is that the narrowly divided Supreme Court will uphold Trump's order and that the crucial "swing" Justice, Anthony Kennedy, will vote with the "conservative" (another euphemism - "radical right wing" might well be more accurate) majority on this issue.

    This would resolve the only real question in this case by holding that the alleged "national security" justification for the ban put forward by the Trump administration is genuine, and that it "Trumps" the Constitutional right to freedom of religion by Muslim US citizens who would be adversely affected by upholding the ban, as they unquestionably would be - a point which did not appear to come out at the oral argument to any great extent.

    But when one recalls that during Trump's campaign there was talk, not only of banning the world's entire Muslim population from the US, but of conducting surveillance of Muslim Americans and even interning them, in an ominous throwback to what happened to Japanese-Americans during WW2 (shamefully, with the Supreme Court's approval), it becomes clear what could be at stake for the 3 million US citizens who happen to belong to the Muslim faith if the latest version of Trump's ban order is finally upheld.

    However, no matter how much the ban's supporters on and off the Court may wish to to hand the president a victory on one of his "signature" campaign issue, it became obvious during the oral argument that the "national security" reason that has been put forth for the ban is nothing but "Trumped-up " window dressing for the anti-Muslim bigotry that underlies the ban.

    The main task for the Solicitor General, Noah Francisco, was to persuade the Court to disregard Trump's numerous statements and actions, both as a candidate and after taking office as president, making clear beyond any possible doubt that the real reason for barring 200 million Muslims from entering the US on the basis of their nationality alone, and without any evidence of individual wrongdoing, was hatred of of Muslims and their religion, or what the 4th Circuit politely but accurately called "animus" on Trump's part.

    However, two hypothetical questions, one by Justice Kennedy and the other by Justice Kagan, showed the essential hollowness (and lack of required good faith - see Kleindienst v. Mandel, 1972) in the government's claim that Trump's Islamophobic statements as a "private citizen" should be ignored (without mentioning Trump's retweeting a British anti-Muslim hate video and appointing openly Muslim-hating top advisers such as Michael Flynn and Steve Bannon as president, to mention only a few similar actions).

    Justice Kennedy's hypothetical question was the following, as reported by George Mason University Law Professor Ilya Somin in his incisive article about the oral argument (not only the best I have read, but in my opinion, the only good one that I have seen previously):

    "Suppose you have a local mayor and, as a candidate, he makes vituperative hate - hateful statements, he's elected, and on day two, he takes acts that are consistent with those hateful statements. That's - whatever he said in the campaign is irrelevant?"

    And, as also reported by Professor Somin, Justice Kagan asked whether:

    "...a president gets elected who is a vehement anti-Semite and says all kinds of denigrating comments about Jews and provokes a lot of resentment and hatred"

    could legitimately produce a national security rationale for a travel ban against Israel without violating the Constitution.

    In answer to Justice Kennedy's question, Francisco's claim that Trump's statements about Muslims do not indicate the true purpose of the ban were unconvincing, to say the least, especially in view of Trump's claim, as president, not as a candidate, that his initial draconian version of the travel ban, which his administration later withdrew to comply with lower court orders, should never have been "watered down."

    (In this area, as in so many others, Trump has shown himself to be far from an easy client for any lawyer to represent!)

    And in answer to Justice Kagan's question, Francisco had no choice by to concede that a hypothetical entry ban against citizens of Israel would be unconstitutional, even if based on purported agency recommendations, such as those which Trump allegedly received from his officials (who, of course, would have been promptly fired for being "disloyal" if they had refused to support the ban).

    We can be sure that Justice Kagan will not forget her above question when she votes on which way to decide in this case. Anyone who supports freedom and equality of all religions in America and who does not favor using our immigration laws as an instrument of hatred and prejudice based on race or religion, as was the case for so much of America's immigration history and which Trump is now trying to do with his Muslim Ban, can only hope that Justice Kennedy will remember his hypothetical question too when the Court makes its decision.

    There is more at stake in this case than simply how many immigrants from predominantly Muslim counties will be allowed to enter Donald Trump's America with legal visas in the next few years. The larger issue is whether claimed unlimited presidential power over immigration will be allowed to "Trump" the United States Constitution.

    If the Supreme Court puts unlimited presidential power in any area of government ahead of the Constitutional guarantees of religious freedom and equal protection of the law to everyone, regardless of race, religion or ancestry, not only non-white immigrants will be the ones to suffer. The American people will also lose their freedom, and the basic values of justice and equality on which this nation was founded could well disappear.

    Roger Algase
    Attorney at Law

    Updated 04-26-2018 at 08:19 PM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

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