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  1. Even Trump-Friendly Freedom Caucus Doesn't Think that the Wall is Worth a Shutdown. What is the Point of the Wall? Roger Algase

    POLITICO reports that even the Trump-friendly conservative Freedom Caucus doesn't think his border Wall is worth a government shutdown. What purpose is there to the Wall except to fulfill a bombastic campaign promise and humiliate Latino (and by extension) all other non-white immigrants? See:

    Roger Algase
    Attorney at Law

    Updated 08-30-2017 at 03:17 PM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

  2. Trump, strike a deal: Trade border wall funding for DACA protections. By Nolan Rappaport

    © Getty

    Congress must extend government funding by September 30 and has until mid-October to raise the debt ceiling, and President Donald Trump is threatening to veto any funding bill that does not include money for the wall he has promised to build on the southwest border.

    “If we have to close down our government,” he said, at his rally in Phoenix last week, “we’re building that wall.”

    A 16-day shutdown in 2013 resulted in an estimated loss of $24 billion in economic output and shaved 0.6 percent off the nation's economic growth. But failure to raise the debt limit would be even more serious.

    Unless a law is passed to raise the debt limit, the government will run out of money to pay its bills, which would trigger a default. This would jeopardize the world’s faith in America’s ability to pay its bills and that faith serves as the underpinning of the entire global financial system.

    The risks are high on both ends of this equation — financial security and border security. Indeed, it has not been possible to erect even a virtual wall along the length of the southwest border.

    In September 2006, CBP awarded Boeing a contract to build the Secure Border Initiative Network (SBInet), a virtual wall of technological devices that was supposed to provide border patrol officers with the information needed to maintain operational control of what was happening along the entire length of the southwest border.

    It was a complete failure. When former DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano terminated the program in January 2011, it had cost taxpayers almost $1 billion to complete two regions covering a total of only 53 miles of the 2,000-mile border.

    Despite the difficulty of the task, give Trump a chance to show what he can do. This can be done by properly funding the existing border security legislation.


    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.

    Updated 08-28-2017 at 01:36 PM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

  3. Trump's Arpaio Pardon Was Not Only an Endorsement of Racism Against Minority Immigrants, But Also a Blueprint for Destroying Democracy. Roger Algase

    Update: August 29, 1:35 pm

    See also Michael Gerson's August 28 article in the Washington Post:

    Trump deepens the moral damage to the GOP

    (Sorry, I do not have a link - please go to Google.)

    Gerson writes:

    "Arpaio made a career of dehumanizing prisoner's in his charge. His pardon sends the signal that some people are less than human. Trump has employed dehumanization as a political tool from the start - of refugees, of migrants- of Muslims. By his pardon of Arpaio, he has metaphorically pardoned his own cruel and divisive approach to politics. It is a further step toward Trump's normalization and entrenchment of bigotry in our own public life."

    My original comment follows: readers will note that I have already previously commented on the significance of Donald Trump's August 25 unpardonable pardon of the racist former Maricopa County Sheriff, Joe Arpaio, a pardon which has now been strongly condemned by Congressional leaders in both parties.

    As my comments, and the mounting storm of protests against the pardon not only by immigration advocates and Latino community spokesmen but by some of America's leading civil rights groups such as the ACLU, Urban League and NAACP indicate, the immediate reaction to the pardon dealt with its racial aspects.

    Pardoning a government official who openly boasted about tormenting Latino immigrants in what he himself called "concentration camp" conditions unquestionably has racial implications not only for immigrant groups, but for all Americans of color, to whom Trump's pardon of Arpaio was also clearly a message of hatred and contempt.

    But, even though no one could possibly deny that racial implications of the pardon, there was another message in the pardon that was even more ominous.

    This was Trump's support for a law enforcement official whom Trump called a "patriot" but who in fact ran his sheriff's office as a despot, not only tormenting his immigrant victims, but also hounding and persecuting his opponents or anyone else whom he considered an enemy.

    This aspect of Arpaio's career as sheriff, as well as the frightening results of a full Justice Department investigation into his activities, form the subject of an expose by Margaret Talbot in the August 25 New Yorker Magazine.

    It is a revealing example of how allowing a government official to act a an autocrat toward minority immigrants can lead to the extinction of democracy for Americans as well. Talbot's article, which also has a link to the full report of 2011 DOJ investigation of Arpaio's conduct as sheriff, should serve as a warning to America, not as a model for this country's president to support and emulate.

    The New Yorker article:

    Why Does Donald Trump Like Sheriff Joe Arpaio?

    is available at

    The Guardian also has a good summary of the authoritarian implications of Trump's pardon, as seen by legal experts and former White House officials, in the following August 26 article:

    Talbot writes about Arpaio's activities as follows in her New Yorker article:

    "Arpaio, throughout his tenure, specialized in meeting out theatrical punishments both petty and cruel. He required that detainees [mainly Latino immigrants] wear old-fashioned, black and white striped uniforms and pink underwear...He brought back chain gangs, including for women and juveniles. He housed detainees outdoors, under Army-surplus tents, in Phoenix temperatures that regularly soar well above a hundred degrees."

    Talbot continues:

    "'I put them [again, mainly Latino immigrants] up at the dump, the dog pound, the waste disposal plant,' Arpaio told my colleague William Finnegan...

    Finnegan described a federal investigation that found that

    deputies had used stun guns on prisoners already strapped in a 'restraint chair'. The family of one man who died after being forced into the restraint chair was awarded more than six million dollars as the result of a suit filed in federal court. The family of another man killed in the restraint chair got $8.25 million in a pretrial settlement."

    Is the above report about America, or is it about Nazi concentration camps such as Dachau or Buchenwald? It is hard to tell the difference. One can see why Arpaio accurately described his own jails as "concentration camps". No one would argue with that.

    But is this what Trump meant when he called Arpaio a "patriot"? What does this say about Trump's attitudes toward Latino and other non-white immigrants, including but not limited to Joe Arpaio's victims?

    But the issue involved in Trump's pardon of Arpaio goes beyond the torture and killing of Latino immigrants during Arpaio's tenure as sheriff. It also involves Arpaio's attempts, similar to those of any tinpot dictator, to retaliate against his critics or political opponents, as Talbot also describes in her article:

    "Like Trump, Arpaio regards reporters, activists and critics of his policies as personal enemies as well as enemies of the people. The Justice Department investigation found that his department
    had: 'engaged in a pattern of retaliating against individuals for exercising their First Amendment rights to free speech.' It had 'arrested individuals without cause, filed meritless complaints against the political adversaries of Sheriff Arpaio and initiated unfounded civil lawsuits and investigations of individuals critical of MCSO's policies and practices.'"

    Talbot's article also goes on to describe how Arpaio's deputies staged late night raids on the executives of a publication which had criticized Arpaio and arrested both men on groundless charges which the county attorney declined to pursue because they had no merit. Talbot's article also states:

    "Local activists who applauded when someone made critical remarks about Arpaio at a Board of Supervisor's meeting were arrested and charged with disorderly conduct. Arpaio had a private investigator follow the wife of a judge who had ruled against him. And so on."

    As mentioned above, the full Department of Justice investigation report on Arpaio's activities is available on a link contained in Talbot's above article. The DOJ report can also be accessed at:

    The above is enough
    to show that Arpaio was not merely trying to protect America against illegal immigration, as Trump misleadingly claimed when he issued the pardon, but was a despot who exploited public feelings against Latino and other minority immigrants in order to engage in his own penchant for sadism toward immigrant detainees and seize as much power as he could in his position.

    By not only pardoning Arpaio, but also endorsing his "patriotic" violence against immigrants and attempts to intimidate and persecute American citizens who opposed him, Trump is showing, more clearly and dramatically than ever before, what his own vision is for America - a racist dictatorship, in which neither immigrants nor American citizens of color have any rights, and where the only law is whatever Donald Trump himself says it is.

    The American people can prevent this from happening and preserve their own freedoms only by protecting the rights of the people who are most vulnerable in our society - the Latino and other minority immigrants whom Joe Arpaio, Donald Trump, and Trump's white supremacist, neo-Nazi supporters - the ones who wreaked havoc in Charlottesville and who cheered wildly in Phoenix when Trump promised to pardon sheriff Joe Arpaio - have been trying to persecute the most.

    In closing, it would be a major mistake for immigrant rights supporters to look at Trump's Arpaio pardon in isolation, as if it were only a move directed against unauthorized immigrants, or Latino immigrants. Every move that the president makes regarding immigration has to be looked in in context as part of a larger strategy, one that includes not only persecuting and, in Arpaio's case, torturing, less skilled or educated immigrants who may be in the US without legal permission; but also building a border wall of shame as a symbol to nullify the message of the Statue of Liberty and show the world that Latino immigrants are not wanted in the United States; while banning potentially hundreds of millions of immigrants from Muslim countries from even applying for visas because of their religion; and, most recently in the case of the RAISE Act which has now been introduced in Congress with Trump's strong support, RAISING the bar to legal immigration to the US so high that only immigrants from English-speaking countries, or European countries where English is widely spoken and understood, would be able to come to the United States.
    Roger Algase is a New York immigration lawyer and a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School. For more than 35 years, Roger has been helping mainly skilled and professional immigrants receive work visas and green cards.

    Roger's practice includes both employment-based and family immigration, concentrating on H-1B specialty occupation and O-1 extraordinary ability work visas; and green cards through labor certification and though opposite sex or same sex marriage. Roger's email address is

    Updated 08-29-2017 at 12:36 PM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

  4. In Administration Attempt to Delay Approvals, USCIS Announces That Employment-Based Green Card Applications Will Require Interviews. Roger Algase

    In what appears to be an evident attempt to delay approvals of meritorious employment-based adjustment of status green card cases, USCIS has announced that many of these cases will now require interviews. For the past several years, employment-based adjustment of status cases have generally been approved without interviews.

    There is no reason to believe that interviews are necessary in the great majority of labor certification or other employment-based green card cases, because the applicant's qualifications depend entirely on a wide range of technical requirements covered in the paperwork.

    I happened recently to attend one of the comparatively few adjustment interviews in a labor certification based case that were scheduled prior to the Trump administration's coming into office, and the interview consisted of little more than the examiner's asking for the I-485 adjustment applicant's name, address and last US entry date, and then stating that he would review the file and most likely approve the case.

    The applicant's green card arrived, shortly afterward, as it happened, on the same day that Donald Trump took office as president. His inauguration day will therefore remain forever as a golden day in the life of at least one US lawful permanent resident immigrant!

    There is no reason to believe that, absent special circumstances, personal interviews in employment-based green card cases are anything other than a huge waste of USCIS time and resources, as well as a cause of lengthy delays for the applicants.

    Delay, for its own sake, along with the attendant hardship to well qualified, often high-skilled and well educated applicants who have already gone though intensive paper-based reviews and background checks at multiple levels of the immigration system, appears to be the obvious and only purpose of this new Trump administration policy.

    One could even ask, legitimately and not at all unfairly, if the new policy is motivated by anything else than the pure malice which Trump has shown toward almost all classes of immigrants, especially those from non-European countries, both as a presidential candidate and since taking office as the nation's chief executive.

    For further details, see the following
    POLITICO report at:
    Roger Algase is a New York immigration lawyer and graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School. Roger has been helping mainly skilled and professional immigrants obtain, work visas and green cards for more than 35 years.

    Roger's practice concentrates in both employment based and family based immigration, including H-1B specialty occupation and O-1 extraordinary ability work visas; and green cards through labor certification, and through same sex or opposite sex marriage. His email address is

    Updated 08-27-2017 at 08:13 AM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

  5. Trump Delights White Supremacists With Arpaio Pardon and Hints at Ending DACA in Moves Back toward Racist 1924 Immigration Act. Roger Algase

    In a move that is sure to delight Trump's white supremacist supporters, on August 25 Trump issued a pardon for Arizona's notorious former sheriff Joe Arpaio for his conviction of criminal contempt of court in a case arising from Arpaio's racial profiling and abusive practices directed against Latino immigrants. The Guardian report sums up Arpaio's actions that formed the background to his criminal conviction as follows:

    "Over a 24-year tenure as Sheriff of Maricopa County, Arpaio gained notoriety for detaining hundreds of undocumented immigrants in a tent city jail and forcing them to wear pink underwear...calling his own jail a 'concentration camp'."

    The pardon was immediately condemned by the ACLU, The National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO), and other civil rights, minority rights and pro-immigrant advocates as an endorsement of racism and an assault on democracy and the rule of law.

    ACLU Deputy Legal Director Cecillia Wang made the following statement after the pardon was issued:

    "With his pardon of Arpaio, Trump has chosen lawlessness over justice, division over unity, hurt over healing. Once again, the president has acted in support of illegal, failed, immigration practices that target people of color and have been struck down by the courts. His pardon of Arpaio is a presidential endorsement of racism."

    Among the civil rights organizations which had condemned the pardon, even in advance (as of August 23) as being a blow against all ethnic minorities in the US, not only immigrants, were the following, among others:

    NAACP, National Urban League, National Congress of American Indians, National Council of Asian Pacific Americans, Advancement Project, Demos, PICO, Haas Institute for a Fair and Inclusive Society and Advancement Project

    However, it appears that the spirit of tolerance and mercy that Trump showed toward a notorious persecutor of minority immigrants may be running short when it comes to protecting non-white immigrants themselves from the harshness or unfairness of our immigration laws. Late reports indicate that Trump is coming closer to ending the DACA program which has so far protected up to 800,000 mainly Latino immigrants who were brought to the US illegally as children through no fault of their own from deportation.

    See: Slate, August 25:

    Trump Reportedly Ending DACA in Move That Will Not Upset White Supremacists at All

    (Sorry, I do not have a direct link to that article - please go to Google.)

    The above Slate story also includes a direct link to a January story in The Atlantic about the unequivocal support that Trump's attorney general, Jeff Sessions, who has reportedly been one of the strongest voices urging Trump to end DACA, gave to the openly bigoted 1924 Johnson-Reed immigration act which barred most Jews, Asians and other non-"Nordic" immigrants from the US on openly racially-motivated grounds for 40 years until it was repealed by Congress in 1965.

    Sessions praised this overtly racist law in a 2015 interview with - guess whom? then (and current) Breitbart News editor and until recently, White House senior adviser, Stephen Bannon.

    The question is not whether, in these two latest developments, Trump is moving America back toward the bigoted, white supremacist spirit of the 1924 immigration act (which a young European white nationalist politician by the name of Adolf Hitler also praised in a manifesto known to history throughout the world as Mein Kampf), but only how far and how fast the president is doing so.

    As shown by the above statements of numerous civil rights organizations, not only immigrant advocacy groups, Trump's unpardonable pardon of Sheriff Joe Arpaio, whose very name has become a symbol of bigotry and hate against immigrants and other minorities, and the president's threat to end DACA, are not only assaults on the rights of immigrants to equal justice under the law, but are attacks against the rights of minority American citizens as well.

    In these actions, especially regarding the Arpaio pardon, Trump is not only taking America's immigration system back toward the 1920's era of open racism, but is also pointing America back toward the pre-civil rights era of segregation and oppression against all Americans of color.
    Roger Algase is a New York immigration lawyer and a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School who has been helping mainly skilled and professional immigrants from diverse parts of the world obtain work visas and green cards for more than 35 years, without regard to ethnic background or religion, and in the true spirit of America.

    Roger's email address is

    Updated 08-26-2017 at 09:27 AM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

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