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  1. President Trumpís 101-Year Deportation Plan

    Joseph Stalin and Mao Zedong had their five-year plans. Nikita Khrushchev had his seven-year plan. And now President Trump has a 101-year plan. Thatís how long it will take to deport the countryís 11 million undocumented residents if current trends continue.


    Happy Birthday! Now, get the hell out of my country!


    The most recent statistics on case completions in Immigration Court show that the Trump Administration has issued an average of 8,996 removal (deportation) orders per month between February and June 2017 (and 11,000,000 divided by 8,996 cases/month = 1,222.8 months, or 101.9 years). That's up from 6,913 during the same period last year, but still well-below the peak period during the early days of the Obama Administration, when courts were issuing 13,500 removal orders each month.

    Of course, the Trump Administration has indicated that it wants to ramp up deportations, and to that end, the Executive Office for Immigration Review or EOIR--the office that oversees the nation's Immigration Courts--plans to hire more Immigration Judges ("IJs"). Indeed, Jefferson Beauregard Sessions, the Attorney General (at least for now) announced that EOIR would hire 50 more judges this year and 75 next year.
    Assuming EOIR can find 125 new IJs, and also assuming that no currently-serving judges retire (a big assumption given that something like 50% of our country's IJs are eligible to retire), then EOIR will go from 250 IJs to 375. So instead of 101 years to deport the nation's 11 million undocumented residents, it will only take 68 years (assuming that no new people enter the U.S. illegally or overstay their visas, and assuming my math is correct--more big assumptions).

    But frankly, I'm doubtful that 68 years--or even 101 years--is realistic. It's partly that more people are entering the population of "illegals" all the time, and so even as the government chips away at the 11,000,000 figure, more people are joining that club, so to speak. Worse, from the federal government's point of view, there is not enough of a national consensus to deport so many people, and there is significant legal resistance to Mr. Trump's immigration agenda.

    In addition to all this, there is the Trump Administration's modus operandi, which is best characterized as malevolence tempered by incompetence. One statistic buried in the recent deportation numbers illustrates this point. In March 2017, judges issued 10,110 removal orders. A few months later, in June, judges issued 8,919 removal orders.

    This means that the number of deportation orders dropped by 1,191 or about 11.8%. How can this be? In a word: Incompetence (I suppose if I wanted to be more generousówhich I donítóI could say, Inexperience). The Trump Administration has no idea how to run the government and their failure in the immigration realm is but one example.

    There are at least a couple ways the Administrationís incompetence has manifested itself at EOIR.

    One is in the distribution of judges. It makes sense to send IJs where they are needed. But thatís not exactly what is happening. Maybe itís just opening night jitters for the new leadership at EOIR. Maybe theyíll find their feet and get organized. But so far, it seems EOIR is sending judges to the border, where they are underutilized. While this may have the appearance of action (which may be good enough for this Administration), the effectóas revealed in the statistical dataóis that fewer people are actually being deported.

    As I wrote previously, the new Acting Director of EOIR has essentially no management experience, and itís still unclear whether he is receiving the support he needs, or whether his leadership team has the institutional memory to navigate the EOIR bureaucracy. Perhaps this is part of the reason for the inefficient use of judicial resources.

    Another reason may be that shifting judges around is not as easy as moving pieces on a chess board. The IJs have families, homes, and ties to their communities. Not to mention a union to protect them (or try to protect them) from management. And it doesnít help that many Immigration Courts are located in places that you wouldnít really want to live, if you had a choice. So getting judges to where you need them, and keeping them there for long enough to make a difference, is not so easy.

    A second way the Trump Administration has sabotaged itself is related to prosecutorial discretion or PD. In the pre-Trump era, DHS attorneys (the ďprosecutorsĒ in Immigration Court) had discretion to administratively close cases that were not a priority. This allowed DHS to focus on people who they wanted to deport: Criminals, human rights abusers, people perceived as a threat to national security. In other words, ďBad Hombres.Ē Now, PD is essentially gone. By the end of the Obama Administration, 2,400 cases per month were being closed through PD. Since President Trump came to office, the average is less than 100 PD cases per month. The result was predictable: DHS canít prioritize cases and IJs are having a harder time managing their dockets. In essence, if everyone is a deportation priority, no one is a deportation priority.

    Perhaps the Trump Administration hopes to ďfixĒ these problems by making it easier to deport people. The Administration has floated the idea of reducing due process protections for non-citizens. Specifically, they are considering expanding the use of expedited removal, which is a way to bypass Immigration Courts for certain aliens who have been in the U.S. for less than 90 days. But most of the 11 million undocumented immigrants have been here much longer than that, and so they would not be affected. Also, expansion of expedited removal would presumably trigger legal challenges, which may make it difficult to implement.

    Another ďfixĒ is to prevent people from coming here in the first place. Build the wall. Deny visas to people overseas. Scare potential immigrants so they stay away. Illegally turn away asylum seekers at the border. Certainly, all this will reduce the number of people coming to America. But the cost will be high. Foreign tourists, students, and business people add many billions to our economy. Foreign scholars, scientists, artists, and other immigrants contribute to our countryís strength. Whether the U.S. is willing to forfeit the benefits of the global economy in order to restrict some people from coming or staying here unlawfully, I do not know. But the forces driving migration are powerful, and so I have real doubts that Mr. Trumpís efforts will have more than a marginal impact, especially over the long run. And even if he could stop the flow entirely, it still leaves 11 million people who are already here.

    There is an obvious alternative to Mr. Trumpís plan. Instead of wasting billions of dollars, harming our economy, and ripping millions of families apart, why not move towards a broad legalization for those who are here? Focus on deporting criminals and other ďbad hombres,Ē and leave hard-working immigrants in peace. Sadly, this is not the path we are on. And so, sometime in 2118, perhaps our country will finally say adieu to its last undocumented resident.

    Originally posted on the Asylumist: www.Asylumist.com.
  2. Trump Plans to Raise Asylum Bar and Speed Deportations

    by , 07-26-2017 at 03:35 PM (Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal)
    Via Reuters:

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Department of Homeland Security has prepared new guidance for immigration agents aimed at speeding up deportations by denying asylum claims earlier in the process.

    The new guidelines, contained in a draft memo dated February 17 but not yet sent to field offices, directs agents to only pass applicants who have a good chance of ultimately getting asylum, but does not give specific criteria for establishing credible fear of persecution if sent home.


    The guidance instructs asylum officers to "elicit all relevant information" in determining whether an applicant has "credible fear" of persecution if returned home, the first obstacle faced by migrants on the U.S.-Mexico border requesting asylum.


    Click here for more of the story.
  3. Undocumented Youth Stage Mass Sit-in at Texas Attorney General Office

    by , 07-26-2017 at 11:01 AM (Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal)
    Immigrant Youth From Across The Country Come To Texas For First Undocumented Led Escalated Action Under The Trump Administration
    This action comes in response to the recent threats facing the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) Program and the introduction to the DREAM Act bill in Congress

    Austin, TX- Immigrant youth from across the country are gathering in Texas to take escalated action and pledge their renewed commitment to winning permanent protection, dignity and respect for all 11 million undocumented immigrants.


    Who:
    Undocumented youth, parents, and allies


    What:
    Mass sit-in at Texas Attorney Generalís Office, in the first and largest undocumented led direct action since Trumpís inauguration. 300 W 15th St, Austin, TX


    When:
    Wednesday, July 26th 10:30 AM


    Texas has become the battleground state in the struggle for immigrant rights in the Trump era. It leads the country on mass deportations and recently passed the most anti-immigrant statewide law. It was Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton who spearheaded the call for the repeal of DACA. Undocumented youth in Texas and across the country are confronting attacks on the immigrant community head on. For the DACAmented young people participating in this action, the threat of facing ICE retaliation is real- just as it was seven years ago when the first undocumented youth began risking arrest. Austin Mayor Steve Adler and Travis County Sheriff Sally Hernandez have said that the police department does not transfer immigrants over to ICE and we expect them to honor that commitment.


    ďWith DACA under threat, we know that some will put their hope in DC politicians. But we also know that we won DACA not because of any politician, but because our community took fearless action. We marched, we walked-out, we stopped deportations and shut down detention centers. We took risks and put our bodies on the line to tell the people of this country that we were ĎUndocumented, Unafraid, and Unapologetic,íĒ said Maria Fernanda Cabello, a spokesperson for Movimiento Cosecha. ďThis moment calls for us to be brave again; to create a moral crisis that will change the narrative on immigration in this country.Ē


    Immigrant youth have always known DACA was temporary, which is why we need permanent protection, dignity and respect for all. This moment is bigger than any piece of legislation. DACA is under attack while our parents, who were never even given the temporary protection DACA provides, are denied dignity and respect in a country that has never recognized them. It is time for the immigrant community to show this country that it depends on us. We will not stop fighting until we have won permanent protection, dignity and respect for our parents, our communities, and all 11 million undocumented immigrant
  4. REGISTER FOR MU HEALTHCARE IMMIGRATION WEBINAR ON AUGUST 1

    by , 07-26-2017 at 09:43 AM (Chris Musillo on Nurse and Allied Health Immigration)
    MU Law is pleased to announce a free healthcare immigration webinar on August 1, 2017 at 3PM ET for all clients and friend of the firm. It is ideal for US employers, staffing companies, recruiters, and others interested in healthcare immigration.

    Click here to REGISTER

    The Healthcare Immigration Seminar will feature these topics:

    • Green card Immigration for Nurses and Physical Therapists (Schedule A occupations)
    • Filing for Green card when you have an Unanticipated Worksite
    • Visa Screens and Healthcare Worker Certificates
    • FCCPT and the future of PT immigration
    • H-1B visas for PTs, OTs, Med Techs, and other allied healthcare workers
    • Managing Social Security Numbers and Licensure
    • H-1B cap-exempt entities
    • Immigration under the Trump administration
    • Legislative and Regulatory changes that may be on the horizon

    Please read the Musillo Unkenholt Healthcare and Immigration Law Blog at www.musillo.com and www.ilw.com. You can also visit us on Facebook, Twitter and LinknedIn

  5. How Sessions' Faustian Anti-Immigrant Bargain With Donald Trump Could Lead to the End of American Democracy. Roger Algase

    There is an old joke about a politician who is told by one of his advisers that there is a way to guarantee that he, the politician, will never lose an election, no matter how long his career may last. Curious, the politician asks what he would have to do in order to achieve that enviable result.

    The adviser tells the politician that all he, the politician, has to do is agree to sell his soul to the Devil. The politician answers:

    "That sounds simple enough, but what's the catch?"

    While the above, of course, is only a joke, and no rational person would ever seriously accuse any of our elected officials of having sold his or her soul to, let alone actually being, the Devil, one can find at least a faint echo of this joke in the souring of the relationship between the Attorney General and former long term anti-immigrant Senator, and the president of the United States, Donald Trump.

    This is a relationship that was founded on one essential element that has been and still evidently is common to both men, namely opposition to immigration by non-European racial and religious minority groups. If their common pursuit of that policy goal seemed like a relationship that was "made in heaven" from the point of view of accomplishing that objective, it is now rapidly moving, at least for Sessions, in the direction of that other, opposite, place instead.

    This is because there was a "catch" in the implied bargain between Sessions and Trump.

    In return for Sessions' support as the first Senator actually to endorse him for president and someone who could be of immense help in rallying anti-immigrant voters to Trump's side, Trump held out the promise of bringing to actual fruition Sessions' long held goal of rolling back fifty years of progress in making the American dream available to immigrants from outside Europe, as contemplated by the immigration reform act of 1965.

    As immigration rights advocate Linda Chavez wrote about Sessions in September, 2016:

    "It's no coincidence that accompanying Trump on his visit south of the border was Sen. Jeff Sessions, arguably the most anti-immigrant politician since Senator William Paul Dillingham, whose opposition to immigrants from southern and eastern Europe resulted in the first mass restriction legislation in the early 1900's."

    http://www.newsmax.com/LindaChavez/t.../02/id/746424/

    But the "catch", which may or may not have been obvious to Sessions at the beginning, was that by entering into a bargain whereby Trump gave Sessions enormous power and control over America's immigration system as Attorney General of the United States, a power that Sessions might very arguably have only dreamed of ever having without Trump, Sessions would also be required to forego any ethical and legal scruples on his part which would have stood in the way of Trump's drive to absolute power.

    However, by recusing himself from the Russia investigation of possible illegal contacts between Trump, or his top campaign officials, between officials and or private individuals in that country, Sessions chose to honor the rule of law, rather than the absolute "loyalty" which Trump demanded of FBI James Comey before firing him as FBI Director and which Trump, evidently, demands of everyone whom he considers to be a subordinate; "loyalty" which would put Trump so far beyond the rule of law as to set the stage for the end of democracy in America and its replacement by one man rule. See: The Guardian, July 25:

    https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/...mp-feud-russia

    and Salon (May 12):

    http://salon.com/2017/05/12/donald-t...get-it-report/

    As a result, Sessions, according to all the latest news reports (as of July 25), is now at risk of being forced out of or fired from his position, and thereby losing the power to turn America's immigration system, for perhaps decades to come, back in the direction of the 1924 "Nordics"- only immigration act which barred all but a very few of the world's Jews, Eastern and Southern European Catholics, Muslims, Asians, Africans and Middle Easterners from coming to the United States as immigrants, and which Sessions praised so highly in his January, 2015 Immigration "Handbook" for Congressional Republicans.

    http://www.aila.org/infonet/senator-...ation-handbook

    In my forthcoming further comments on this issue, i will examine in more detail how Sessions, in only six short months since becoming Attorney General of the United States, has impressed his legal stamp on the nation's immigration system.

    To begin with, however, here is a description from a source that supports Sessions' goals of the way he has already made major changes in immigration enforcement policy (to the obvious detriment of minority immigrant communities throughout the United States):

    http://washingtonexaminer.com/how-je...rticle/2620354

    As head of the DOJ, of course, Sessions has also been responsible for devising the deceptive, if not meretricious (from the Latin word meretrix) legal argument that Trump's Muslim ban orders were allegedly not aimed against Muslims as a religion, but were only national security measures - an argument which the overwhelming 4th Circuit majority blew apart in its IRAP decision, and which few other federal courts have taken seriously.

    Ironically, even though the heart of Sessions' DOJ's legal strategy in the Muslim ban cases rested on the same claim of absolute presidential power which Trump is now asserting in connection with the Russia investigation, and which threatens to end Sessions' own tenure as Attorney General (as well as America's two and a half centuries of history as a democracy), even this broad assertion of Trump's claimed authority to rule as a dictator, not a democratically elected leader, in the area of admission of immigrants to the US, has not been enough to satisfy Trump, who has been openly critical of the DOJ's strategy in defending his Muslim ban.

    http://www.reuters.com/article/us-br...-idUSKBN18W1BR

    Roger Algase
    Attorney at Law
    algaselex@gmail.com





    Updated 07-26-2017 at 06:45 AM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

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