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  1. Enforcing Trump's immigration plan will be harder than he thinks. By Nolan Rappaport


    © Getty

    Trump inherited a number of immigration enforcement problems from the Obama administration, the most serious of which was an immigration court backlog that has prevented him from using removal proceedings to reduce the size of the undocumented alien population.

    His solution seems to be to heed the advice of Mitt Romney, who said, when asked about reducing the population of undocumented aliens during a debate in 2012:

    “The answer is self-deportation, which is people decide they can do better by going home because they can't find work here because they don't have legal documentation to allow them to work here.”

    But Trump is using harboring prosecutions to discourage people from helping undocumented aliens to remain here illegally in addition to enforcing employer sanctions to discourage employers from giving them jobs.

    Neither is likely to be successful.

    Read more at http://thehill.com/opinion/immigrati...than-he-thinks

    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.






  2. Trump Moves Toward Dictatorship: Threatens to Ruin WP/Amazon Chief's Business, Prosecute Oakland Mayor, for Opposing Immigration Agenda. Roger Algase

    Update, May 20 at 10:15 am:

    A May 18 comment on the site alternet.org by Cody Fenwick focuses on the dangerous abuse of power when a chief executive singles out a specific company for government retaliation because the president doesn't like being criticized. In an article entitled:

    Trump's Corrupt Abuse of Power on Display in New Report About His Efforts to Target Amazon

    Fenwick writes:

    "Personally directing a federal agency to raise prices on Amazon, therefore, looks like a blatant attempt to punish Bezoz and the
    Post for negative coverage. That would be a classic example of abuse of power.

    Even if Trump had good reasons for saying we should raise prices on Amazon, the mere appearance of the abuse of power could have a chilling effect on other people or organizations who may want to be critical of the president. In this way, Trump can accomplish his goal of stifling dissent without actually carrying out any retaliatory measures."

    https://www.alternet.org/news-amp-po...-target-amazon

    Trump's attempt to order the US Postal Service to increase Amazon's rates because of the Washington Post's negative coverage of his administration's immigration agenda, among other issues, is also paralleled in his directing his attorney general, Jeff Sessions to look into bringing "obstruction of justice" charges against a California mayor who resisted Trump's mass deportation program aimed mainly at Latin American and other immigrants of color, as described in my original comment below.

    Sessions, who, evidently, has some respect left for the rule of law, ignored Trump's demand.

    These two incidents of attempts to use the enormous power of the federal government to punish specific individuals for opposing or criticizing Donald Trump's immigration and other policies are just the latest additions to the steadily mounting evidence showing that his presidency and this nation's democracy are on a collision course.

    My original comment appears below.

    When I was growing up, a U.S. president, who, coincidentally, shared the same first four letters of his last name with America's current president, famously wrote a letter threatening to punch a Washington Post music critic in the nose (among other places) because the critic had panned the singing performance of the president's daughter, Margaret Truman.

    https://www.trumanlibrary.org/trivia/letter.htm

    But there is quite a big difference between a never carried out presidential threat to punch a newspaper music in the nose and an actual ongoing attempt by a president of the United States to use a major instrument of the government, in this case, the United States Post office, to destroy the multi-billion dollar business of a major newspaper publisher because of the latter's opposition to the president's policies, including among the most important targets of criticism, that president's immigration agenda.

    Yet this is exactly what Trump is attempting to do to Jeff Bezos, owner of both Amazon.com and the Washington Post, in retaliation for that newspaper's criticism of Trump's policies and performance as president, including, as a key element of that paper's opposition, Trump's assault on both legal and unauthorized immigration from mainly non-European, non-white parts of the world.

    And there is an even bigger difference between President Harry Truman's expression of outrage and a threat by Donald Trump to prosecute a local government official, in this case the mayor of Oakland, California, for resisting this president's mass deportation agenda.

    Trump's attempt to use the vast power of the federal government to destroy the business of the Washington Post's owner for criticizing Trump's administration, and his threat to prosecute Libby Schaaf, the mayor of Oakland, for refusing to fall in line with his ethnic cleansing deportation agenda directed against Latin American and other immigrants of color who are not from"countries like Norway" are not the actions of the leader of a democratic country that honors the rule of law. They are the actions of a dictator.

    It is not only Latin American, Muslim, African and other immigrants from outside white Europe who are the victims of Trump's attempt to impose his own racial prejudices and/or those of his right wing supporters on America through dismantling the programs and protections which have allowed millions of immigrants ranging from highly skilled H-1B workers to Diversity Visa lottery winners with only a high school education to come to the US legally in the past decades, and through spreading fear and terror in minority communities throughout America through his ethnic cleansing mass deportation agenda for non-criminal immigrants.

    The ultimate losers are the American people, whose almost 250 year-old experiment in democracy is now in danger of being wiped out.

    For the full story on Trump's attempts to bully the USPS into doubling the package delivery rates for Amazon in an obvious attempt at revenge against Bezos for the Washington Post's vocal opposition to Trump's anti-immigrant agenda and many other policies as president, see, Washington Post, May 18:

    Trump personally pushed postmaster general to double rates on Amazon, other firms

    (Available though Google - I do not have a direct link.)

    And for more details about Trump's threat to prosecute Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf for "obstruction of justice" (a charge that Trump himself has been under investigation for the past year by Special Counsel Robert Mueller in a non-immigration related context) for allegedly refusing to cooperate with an ICE raid as part of Trump's mass deportation agenda, see:

    https://www.politico.com/story/2018/...-cities-594470

    To be sure, the United States has not yet reached the point where critics of the president suddenly disappear in the middle of the night to be locked up on orders from the top or, allegedly, die by poisoning, as in the case of Russia (whose purported role in helping Trump win the presidency is still very much part of the Mueller investigation which is obviously causing Trump so much Angst).

    But the above news items leave no doubt that America is moving toward that direction in the "Donald Trump Era" - one which now includes a new CIA director who has had great difficulty overcoming allegations of complicity in torture.

    https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/...nate-democrats

    In view of Trump's open advocacy of using torture against people he perceives as dangerous during his presidential campaign

    https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/...rture-tpp-rape

    could Trump's appointment of Gina Haspel to this powerful and influential position be another, not so veiled, warning to media figures and politicians who might be thinking of speaking out against Trump's plans to purge America of non-white immigrants, about what might happen to anyone who opposes this agenda in the non-so distant future?

    Roger Algase
    Attorney at Law
    algaselex@gmail.com

    Updated 05-20-2018 at 11:52 AM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

  3. The State of Immigration Enforcement by Alex Nowrasteh

    by , 05-18-2018 at 10:27 AM (Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal)
    Via the Cato Institute's Alex Nowrasteh:

    "Criminal removals are for those who are convicted of crimes, mostly nonviolent and nonproperty offenses such as violations of immigration law. Much of the fear today is that the Trump administration will increase the removals of noncriminal illegal immigrants. While they certainly are targeted, the number and percentage of noncriminal removals are barely changed in 2017 compared to 2016 (Figure 1). The number of criminal removals climbed by about 11,000 and noncriminal removals by about 3,000 in 2017 relative to 2016. "



    Click here for more analysis.
  4. Sessions Moves to Destroy Immigration Court Independence in Order to Rubber Stamp Trump's Mass Deportation Agenda. Roger Algase

    As further evidence that Trump's racially motivated immigration agenda of stopping people whom he calls "animals" (otherwise known as Latino or other non-white immigrants) from entering the United States, and expelling those who are already here as fast as possible (see my May 17 Immigration Daily comment) is taking America on the road to dictatorship, Trump's AG, Jeff Sessions, is quietly destroying the independence of the Immigration Court system and converting it into a rubber stamp for Trump's mass deportation agenda.

    Huffington Post reports that Sessions has used his wide authority over the immigration court system to take three important cases away from the Board of Immigration Appeals. In his first decision issued in these cases, he has sharply limited the power of Immigration Judges to close deportation cases administratively.

    This could speed up the removal of thousands of immigrants who may have valid legal claims to the right to stay in the US, such as through adjustment of status to permanent resident.

    https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry...b0a0461869e928

    In the words of Jeremy McKinney, national secretary of AILA, this could

    "...deport people who are trying to go through the immigration system the right way."

    Huffpost reports that Sessions has also taken two other important cases away from the BIA to decide on his own, something which attorney generals are allowed to do by law but which power other AG's have used only sparingly up to now. One of the cases could restrict the power of IJ''s to grant continuances, and the other could make asylum much mire difficult.

    As Trina Realmuto of the American Immigration Council states about Sessions:

    "As the attorney general, as the head of the department of justice, as the person who is certifying cases to himself, he needs to be neutral, impartial, and he needs to adjudicate without a political agenda."

    While America is not there yet, Sessions' moves to exert political control over the immigration court system, in violation of the most elementary concept of due process, are an ominous signal that this country could be taking at least the first steps down the road to using the court system as a mere instrument to carry out the will of a dictator, such as was done under the Nazi regime.

    As Russel K. Osgood writes a book review in 28 Cornell International Law Journal, 461, 462 (1995):

    In addition to the changes in substantive law, all aspects of German legal culture were made to conform to Nazi values."

    The above is not meant to imply that either Donald Trump or Jeff Sessions supports Nazi ideology, genocide or antisemitism in any way, shape or form. Clearly, they do not.

    But the history of what took place with the courts under the Nazi regime stands as a warning of what can happen to a country's judicial system, and its democracy, when the objective of removing or excluding large classes of people, in this case, Latino, Muslim, African and other non-white immigrants, takes precedence over judicial independence, constitutional rights, fundamental fairness and the rule of law.

    Roger Algase
    Attorney at Law
    algaselex@gmail.com

    Updated 05-18-2018 at 09:46 AM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

  5. Attorney General Rules on Administrative Closure of Deportation Cases

    by , 05-18-2018 at 07:53 AM (Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal)
    For the reasons set forth in the accompanying opinion, I affirm the Board’s order and remand for further proceedings. I hold that immigration judges and the Board do not have the general authority to suspend indefinitely immigration proceedings by administrative closure.

    Accordingly, immigration judges and the Board may only administratively close a case where a previous regulation or a previous judicially approved settlement expressly authorizes such an action. Where a case has been administratively closed without such authority, the immigration judge or the Board, as appropriate, shall recalendar the case on the motion of either party.


    I overrule Matter of Avetisyan, 25 I&N Dec. 688 (BIA 2012), Matter of WY-U-, 27 I&N Dec. 17 (BIA 2017), and any other Board precedent, to the extent those decisions are inconsistent with this opinion.


    Matter of Castro-Tum, 27 I&N Dec. 271 (A.G. 2018)

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