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  1. Entry Ban Order Causes Even More Harm to Muslim US Citizens' Rights to Equal Protection Against Discrimination and Safety Threats. Roger Algase

    Update: March 22 as of 2:57 pm:

    POLITICO reports that Donald Trump has sent warm greetings to the people of Iran for their Now Ruz holiday, the Iranian New Year. He praised Iran's multi-religious heritage and also commended"many Iranians who have come to our country in recent decades to make a new start in a free land."

    If Trump's latest ban on entry to the US by some 100 million citizens of six (formerly seven) almost 100 per cent Muslim countries is upheld by the federal courts, there will not be very many more Iranians coming to America to "make a new start in a free land", since Iran is on the banned list.

    My original comment appears below.

    Much of the debate over the original and current versions of Trump's executive orders barring an estimated 100 million citizens of six 99 per cent Muslim countries from entering the United States without any showing that they have terrorist connections or individually present any threat to America is focused on the alleged lack of Constitutional protections for the rights of foreign citizens seeking to visit, study or work in this country temporarily.

    In a recent post, I introduced the thorny and complicated subject of the "Plenary Power" over immigration doctrine which the Supreme Court devised back in the 1880's to make it easier to discriminate against Chinese immigrants by keeping them out the the US on purely racial grounds, just as Trump is now trying to keep Muslims from the affected Middle Eastern and African countries out for primarily religious reasons. I will have more to say about "Plenary Power" in a future comment.

    However, there has been less discussion about the specific ways in which Trump's Muslim ban is harming the Constitutional rights of Muslim US citizens to religious freedom and equal protection of the law, by making them in more subject to discrimination and threat of violence in reality, not just as a matter of personal feeling, as alleged, for example in the complaint filed in federal district court by the State of Hawaii and the individual Muslim plaintiff in that case.

    Now comes a report by the Institute for Social Policy Understanding which adds substance to these fears, just as the Supreme Court, just over 60 years ago, found that there was a substantive basis for the feelings of African-American children that they were not equal to white children caused by the school segregation laws of that time.

    The above report includes four key findings, all of which are at least in part the result of Trump's presidential campaign demonizing and scapegoating Muslims around the world, including American Muslims, as potential terrorists, which undeniably played a major influence in the genesis of Trump's Muslim entry ban orders.

    These findings are as follows:

    1) Muslim children face the most religious-based bullying in school.

    2) Muslim Americans are more scared for their personal safety than any other religious group.

    3) Muslims are facing additional screening at the border more than any other religious group.

    4) More Muslims report religious-based discrimination than any other group.

    Much as the supporters of Trump's ban on entry to the US by some 100 million people for no reason other than they happen to live in six overwhelmingly Muslim countries, none of whose citizens has ever been found to have committed an act of terrorism in the US (yes, some of these countries have terror group problems to be sure, but so do many other Muslim and non-Muslim countries that are not on the banned list) would like to pretend that only the rights of foreign citizens are affected by Trump's executive orders, the reality is that these orders, taken together with Trump's consistent attacks on Muslims both before and after taking office as president, are doing irreparable harm to the rights of millions of Muslim US citizens.

    A summary and link to the full report is available at

    In a summary of the report, entitled:

    American Muslim Poll 2017: Muslims at the Crossroads,

    the authors, Dalia Mogahed and Youssef Chouhoud, refer to the "deeply divisive presidential election cycle" and an uptick in "negatively charged rhetoric and discriminatory acts" against "not just Muslims already in the United States, but also toward those who year to make America their home."

    Even if Trump had not threatened during the presidential campaign to put US Muslims and their places of worship under surveillance, his targeting of an estimated 100 million people for exclusion from the US for no other reason than they happen to live in countries with almost 100 per cent Muslim populations (which, like many other countries not on the list, have had to deal with the presence of terrorist supporters or organizations in their midst), is adding to the fear, hatred and suspicion with which millions of innocent American Muslims are being regarded by their co-US citizens (and by US border control agents).
    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. Roger's email address is

    Updated 03-22-2017 at 01:57 PM by ImmigrationLawBlogs


    by , 03-21-2017 at 08:42 AM (Chris Musillo on Nurse and Allied Health Immigration)
    by Chris Musillo

    Yesterday we posted about a new problem, US CBP officers were denying advance practice nurses’ applications for TN-1 visas. The reports said that at least one US CBP officer was quoting a “change in policy”. AILA has now confirmed that there is no policy change. The law remains: advance practice nurses qualify for TN-1 visas.

    In our blog post, we called on US CBP
    quickly to clarify whether there was or was not a policy change. To this extent, US CBP acted swiftly and should be commended for their quick action.

    Please read the Musillo Unkenholt Healthcare and Immigration Law Blog at and You can also visit us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

    Updated 03-21-2017 at 09:26 AM by CMusillo

  3. Is Muslim Ban Only First Step Back to Europe-Only Immigration? No Africans Granted Visas for US-Africa Business Conference. Roger Algase

    Bulletin: March 22, as of 1:00 pm:

    There has been a suspected terror attack on the British Parliament in London. Wiil this be Donald Trump's Reichstag (1933 German Parliament) Fire?

    My original post appears below:

    In another ominous indication that Donald Trump's attempts to ban more than 100 million citizens of six 99 per cent Muslim countries from coming to the United States have very little to do with national security, and a great deal to do with changing America's immigration demographics back toward the Europeans - only policies of the 1924 Johnson-Reed Immigration Act (which Trump's AG Jeff Sessions praised in a 2015 immigration manifesto, and which Senior White House Adviser Stephen Bannon's Breitbart News has also supported), The Guardian reports that every single one of the between 60 and 100 African applicants for visas to attend an annual conference on US-African business and trade at the University of Southern California was refused a visa, even though none of their approximately a dozen different countries of origin was covered by the ban (which the federal courts have temporarily blocked from taking effect in any event).

    The internationally renowned UK newspaper writes:

    "The African Global Economic and Development Summit, a three-day conference at the University of Southern California (USC), typically brings delegations from across Africa to meet with business leaders in the US to foster partnerships. But this year, every single African citizen who requested a visa was rejected, according to organizer Mary Flowers."

    The Guardian

    "The problems for the trade summit mark the latest example of restricted travel to the US under Trump, whose controversial immigration policies and rhetoric have impacted a wide range of industries and communities. Soccer players, musicians, doctors, tech workers, protesters and others from across the globe have been denied access to the U.S., which has also experienced a slump in immigration since Trump's inauguration."

    With regard to the countries of origin for the applicants who were denied visas, The Guardian writes:

    "Rejected participants at the trade summit came from Nigeria, Cameroon, Angola, Ethiopia, Sierra Leone, Guinea, Ghana, South Africa and more, according to Flowers."

    Even though Trump's latest six Muslim country ban is not currently in effect, The Guardian also reports than none of the rejected applicants were from any of the three African countries (Lybia, Somalia and Sudan) that were on the banned list.

    According to the same report, many of the applicants who had already registered for the conference, which took place with only 50 to 75 participants instead of the 150 to 200 who usually attend, were refused visas after only short interviews even when they brought extensive documentation, such as bank statements and property records.

    According to the same article, The State Department has refused to give any explanation for or to discuss its actions in banning visitors to the US from an entire continent.

    It appears that the issue of arbitrary bans on entry to the US from parts of the world which may be out of favor with the Trump administration has escalated beyond entry from only half a dozen countries, for which there may have been at least the illusion of a pretext, however contrived, for a blanket exclusion.

    According to the report, Mary Flowers also stated:

    "I don't know if its Trump or if its the fact that the embassies that have been discriminating for a long time see this as an opportunity, because of the talk of the travel ban, to blatantly reject everyone...These trade links create jobs for both America and Africa. It's unbelievable what's going on."

    There was a famous saying in ancient Rome.

    Ex Africa semper aliquid novi - "There is always something new out of Africa."

    One could update that saying to add that there is always something new from Africa - except visitors to an America in the Donald Trump era in which immigrants of color are feeling increasingly unwelcome.

    For those who still believe in and support America's ideal of non-discrimination on the basis of race, religion or national origin which has been the basis of our immigration laws for the past half century, there is another Latin saying, taken from Cicero's famous address against Cataline before the Roman Senate, which might well be addressed to our 45th president and the nationalist advisers at the top of his hierarchy:

    Quo usque tandem abutere...patientia nostra?

    "How much longer will you continue to abuse our patience?"
    Roger Algase is a New York immigration lawyer and a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School who has been representing mainly skilled and professional immigrants from diverse parts of the world for more than 35 years. His email address is

    Updated 03-22-2017 at 12:01 PM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

  4. Federal courts flout precedent in blocking Trump's travel ban. By Nolan Rappaport

    © Getty

    President Trump’s revised travel ban hit another roadblock last week as the federal district court for Hawaii ordered a stop to implementing the travel ban. The decision was made on the ground that the plaintiffs are likely to succeed in court on the merits of their claim that the executive order violates the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment by discriminating against Muslims on the basis of their religion.

    But the court’s objection to the travel ban, which would impose a 90-day suspension on the entry into the United States of nationals from six countries which were designated by Congress and the Obama administration as posing national security risks, is that President Trump wrote it. The court even acknowledges this in its decision:

    “It is undisputed that the Executive Order does not facially discriminate for or against any particular religion, or for or against religion versus non-religion.

    “There is no express reference, for instance, to any religion nor does the Executive Order — unlike its predecessor — contain any term or phrase that can be reasonably characterized as having a religious origin or connotation.”

    The court writes that “any reasonable, objective observer would conclude … that the stated secular purpose of the Executive Order is, at the very least, ‘secondary to a religious objective’ of temporarily suspending the entry of Muslims.” This “assessment rests on the specific historical record,” which “focuses on the president’s statements about a ‘Muslim ban,’” including on the campaign trail and the fact that he asked Rudolph Giuliani how to do it legally.

    According to Eric Posner, a professor at the University of Chicago Law School, the courts are creating a “Trump exception” to settled law on presidential powers by ignoring the Supreme Court’s admonition that courts may not “look behind” a “facially legitimate” reason, which with respect to the order, is the national security interest in stricter vetting.


    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. 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.


    by , 03-20-2017 at 10:58 AM (Chris Musillo on Nurse and Allied Health Immigration)
    by Chris Musillo

    There is a mystery afoot at the northern border. Last week reputable news organizations, such as the CBC, reported that advance practice nurses were being told that they no longer qualified for the TN-1 visa at the Canadian-Michigan border.

    The TN-1 visa is a visa authorized under NAFTA. All of the jobs on the NAFTA occupations list are eligible for TN-1 visas. The NAFTA list is purposely vague. It does not list job descriptions for the occupations. Any rational job description includes advance practice nurses under the registered nurse domain. For instance, the State of Michigan law on registered nursing, includes advance practice nurses as a subset of registered nurse. Advance Practice nurses have been using the TN-1 for 20+ years.

    US Customs and Border Protection has been silent on the issue. Immigration attorneys are unsure if the denials are based on one rouge officer’s mistaken understanding of law, or if it is a policy-wide decision.

    Either answer is problematic. If it is a rogue officer, then the US CBP ought to acknowledge their error, re-train the officer, and announce that advance practice nurses are eligible for the TN-1.

    If not, the administration ought to explain the rationale behind its policy-decision. The administration’s own Department of Labor says that for US workers, ”job opportunities for advanced practice registered nurses are likely to be excellent.” Protectionism may be a valid policy argument in some areas, but plainly not for advance practice nurses, who are the forefront of treating American patients.

    Please read the Musillo Unkenholt Healthcare and Immigration Law Blog at and You can also visit us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

    Updated 03-20-2017 at 11:00 AM by CMusillo

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