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  1. OBAMA NAMES TRANSITION ADVISORS ON IMMIGRATION POLICY

    by , 11-20-2008 at 08:39 AM (Greg Siskind on Immigration Law and Policy)
    They're going to be Alex Aleinikoff and Tino Cuťllar. To the extent immigration reform is an important part of the new President's early agenda, these two folks will play a key role. Here's the Obama team's bios on the two:
    T. Alexander Aleinikoff has been Dean of the
    Georgetown University Law Center and Executive Vice President of
    Georgetown University since July 2004. He has been a member of the
    Georgetown faculty since 1997. Dean Aleinikoff served as General
    Counsel and Executive Associate Commissioner for Programs at the
    Immigration and Naturalization Service for several years during the
    Clinton Administration. From 1997 to 2004 he was a Senior Associate at
    the Migration Policy Institute, where he now serves on the Board of
    Trustees. He has written widely on immigration, refugee and citizenship
    law and constitutional law. Dean Aleinikoff is a graduate of Swarthmore
    College and Yale Law School.
    Mariano-Florentino (Tino) Cuťllar is Professor and
    Deane F. Johnson Faculty Scholar at Stanford Law School. His work
    focuses on how organizations manage complex regulatory, migration,
    international security, and criminal justice problems. During the
    Clinton Administration he served at Treasury as Senior Advisor to the
    Under Secretary for Enforcement, where he worked on countering domestic
    and international financial crime, improving border coordination, and
    enhancing anti-corruption measures. He has served on the boards of
    numerous organizations, including Asylum Access and the Stanford Center
    for International Security and Cooperation. He has testified before
    Congress on immigration policy and separation of powers, and was
    appointed to the Silicon Valley Blue Ribbon Task Force on Aviation
    Security. He holds a J.D. from Yale Law School and a Ph.D. in Political
    Science from Stanford. He is an elected member of the American Law
    Institute.
  2. ARIZONA GOVERNOR JANET NAPOLITANO TO HEAD DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY

    by , 11-19-2008 at 10:29 PM (Greg Siskind on Immigration Law and Policy)
    Arizona's Governor Janet Napolitano will be the next Secretary of Homeland Security. Governor Napolitano has signed some of the nation's toughest immigration laws, but she has also spoken out on the need to for Congress to pass comprehensive immigration reform. Side note - In 1988, when I was 20 years old and a law clerk at Lewis and Roca in Phoenix, Arizona, I had the honor of working for Governor Napolitano and her mentor, John Frank, on a big election law research project. Governor Napolitano later wrote a nice recommendation letter for my Rhode Scholarship application. I was planning on getting a masters in law in the UK, but then decided I didn't want to be a lawyer anymore and abandoned the application (my how things changed). Still have the letter, however.  Governor Napolitano struck me as a brilliant lawyer when I met her all those years ago. That she's gone on to such great things is really no surprise and she'll know doubt be a superb Secretary of DHS. Good luck, Janet!
  3. CONDOLEEZA RICE URGES GOP TO EMBRACE IMMIGRATION REFORM

    by , 11-19-2008 at 09:33 AM (Greg Siskind on Immigration Law and Policy)
    Another prominent figure in the Republican Party urges her party to change its ways on immigration. Rice tells the New York Times:
    IMMIGRATION POLICY IS FOREIGN POLICY.

    We didn't get comprehensive immigration reform. . . . I think
    everybody knows that this president tried. I remember the first
    foreign-policy meeting that I went to with the then-governor, before he
    was inaugurated, was with the then-governor, soon to be president of
    Mexico, Vicente Fox,
    and they talked about the need to fix this problem. I am a firm
    believer in defending our laws and defending our borders. . . . But
    it's also true that there are a lot of hardworking people in this
    country who live in the shadows.
    IMMIGRANTS ARE CENTRAL TO AMERICAN IDENTITY.

    I was a major proponent of the temporary-worker program and
    finding some way to normalize the status for these people. I think that
    it goes to the core of who we are. I hear some people talking about,
    well, maybe there should be a timeout on legal immigration, check your
    last name and see whether or not it came over on the Mayflower.
    WHY SOME IMMIGRANTS SHOULD STAY -- AND SOME SHOULD STAY HOME.

    Improving the economic conditions that would allow people who
    are clearly ambitious -- if they're going to walk across the desert to
    get here, they're ambitious people -- improving the capability of those
    people to stay home and contribute is the last piece of that puzzle.
    Comprehensive immigration reform is the one thing I wish we'd been able
    to do, and it's going to have to be done, and I hope it's done soon.
  4. ROVE: GOP NOT SUPPORTING COMPREHENSIVE IMMIGRATION REFORM OR RISK IS "SUICIDAL"

    by , 11-18-2008 at 12:17 PM (Greg Siskind on Immigration Law and Policy)
    Karl Rove warned the GOP about this years ago and it is why he banned Tom Tancredo from the White House. Here's what he writes this week in Newsweek:Hispanics dropped from 44 percent Republican in 2004 to 31 percent in
    2008. The GOP won't be a majority party if it cedes the young or
    Hispanics to Democrats. Republicans must find a way to support secure
    borders, a guest-worker program and comprehensive immigration reform
    that strengthens citizenship, grows our economy and keeps America a
    welcoming nation. An anti-Hispanic attitude is suicidal. As the party
    of Lincoln, Republicans have a moral obligation to make our case to
    Hispanics, blacks and Asian-Americans who share our values. Whether we
    see gains in 2010 depends on it.
  5. VISA WAIVER PROGRAM NOW OFFICIALLY OPEN TO SEVEN NEW COUNTRIES

    by , 11-17-2008 at 10:34 AM (Greg Siskind on Immigration Law and Policy)
    Welcome news for a country that needs as many tourist dollars as we can get right now. Effective today, the new countries on the list are the Czech Republic, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Hungary, Republic of Korea and the Slovak Republic. 
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