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  1. Senate bill is a threat to sanctuary cities. by Nolan Rappaport

    Sens. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) and John McCain (R-Ariz.) recently introduced the State Sponsored Visa Pilot Program Act of 2017, which would allow the states to establish and manage their own guest worker programs for nonimmigrant workers, investors, and entrepreneurs.

    According to Johnson, “We need to recognize that a one-size-fits-all federal model for visas or guest workers doesn’t work. Let the states manage the visas, allocate them to the industries that need the workers, set prevailing wage rates.”

    This program would blur the distinction between federal and state immigration responsibilities and require information sharing to an unprecedented extent, which would eliminate the justification for sanctuary cities. The states could no longer claim that enforcement was a solely federal responsibility.

    How many visas?

    The bill would allocate 5,000 renewable three-year visas for each state and give them a share of 245,000 additional visas which would be distributed on a population basis. Also, the guest workers would be allowed to bring their spouses and children, and there would not be a limit on the visas for family members. Thus, the program could bring more than a million aliens to the country each year.


    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 06-14-2017 at 12:12 AM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

  2. Supreme Court Issues Unanimous Decision on Acquisition of Citizenship at Birth

    by , 06-13-2017 at 09:00 AM (Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal)
    The Supreme Court has issued an immigration related decision (8-0) involving acquisition of citizenship at birth through your father holding that "the gender line Congress drew is incompatible with the Fifth Amendment’s requirement that the Government accord to all persons 'the equal protection of the laws.'" See Sessions v. Morales-Santana, June 12, 2017.

    The relevant facts and procedural history of the case:

    Respondent Luis Ramón Morales-Santana, who has lived in the United States since he was 13, asserts U. S. citizenship at birth based on the U. S. citizenship of his biological father, José Morales.José moved to the Dominican Republic 20 days short of his 19th birthday, therefore failing to satisfy §1401(a)(7)’s requirement of five years’ physical presence after age 14. There, he lived with the Dominican woman who gave birth to Morales-Santana. José accepted parental responsibility and included Morales-Santana in his household;he married Morales-Santana’s mother and his name was then added to hers on Morales-Santana’s birth certificate. In 2000, the Government sought to remove Morales-Santana based on several criminal convictions, ranking him as alien because, at his time of birth, his father did not satisfy the requirement of five years’ physical presence after age 14. An immigration judge rejected Morales Santana’s citizenship claim and ordered his removal. Morales* Santana later moved to reopen the proceedings, asserting that the Government’s refusal to recognize that he derived citizenship from his U. S.-citizen father violated the Constitution’s equal protection guarantee. The Board of Immigration Appeals denied the motion,but the Second Circuit reversed. Relying on this Court’s post-1970 construction of the equal protection principle as it bears on gender based classifications, the court held unconstitutional the differential treatment of unwed mothers and fathers. To cure this infirmity, the Court of Appeals held that Morales-Santana derived citizenship through his father, just as he would were his mother the U. S. citizen.

    Updated 06-13-2017 at 09:03 AM by MKolken

  3. Trump Comes Under Fire From Base for Continuing DACA. A Good Argument to Support His Muslim Ban in the S. Ct.? Roger Algase

    In marked contrast to his hard line policies toward most other aspects of immigration, Trump is continuing to approve new DACA applications and renewals of expiring DACA permits at about the same pace as the Obama administration.

    The right-wing Washington Times newspaper reports that the Trump administration has angered immigration opponents in his voter base by approving more than 17,000 new DACA "amnesties" and more than 100,000 DACA renewal applications during the first three months of 2017. (These figures would also include the first three weeks of January when President Obama was still in office.)

    The same paper also reports that DHS Secretary John Kelly is asking Congress to take action to make the DACA program more permanent.

    According to the same report, the president is coming under attack from some of his own supporters for not following through on his campaign promise to cancel DACA on his first day in office. They are arguing that, at the very least, he should "freeze" the program by refusing to grant any new DACA applications or to approve extensions pf DACA permits which are expiring.

    From an immigration advocate's perspective, however, the president should be commended for breaking this particular campaign promise. This might also be at least some reason for hope that it will lead to his breaking many other anti-immigrant campaign promises in the future.

    To the best of my knowledge, the president's lawyers have not yet used the DACA approvals as an argument in support of their contention in various federal courts to the effect that Trump's campaign statements should not be considered as evidence of his intention in signing the Muslim ban executive orders, the latest version of which is now before the US Supreme Court.

    While I do not normally offer legal advice to Donald Trump (and have not yet received any requests from him for such advice, so far as i am aware) the president's apparent reversal on DACA (so far) might be one of the best arguments that could be made to support his contention that the Supreme Court should disregard his long record of anti-Muslim campaign statements in ruling on the legality of his six Muslim country entry ban executive order.

    One might also hope that many other of Trump's immigration campaign promises will end up in the dustbin of US immigration history. This remains to be seen.
    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 main practice areas include H-1B specialty occupation and O-1 extraordinary ability work visas; and green cards through labor certification and opposite sex or same sex marriage. Roger's email address is

    Updated 06-13-2017 at 01:28 PM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

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