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  1. Think Trump is the first president to be hard on undocumented immigrants? Think again. Nolan Rappaport

    I found the following video clip while doing research for my next article, which will be on Trump's legal immigration plans. You might be surprised by who is making these remarks.

    Or if you would rather just read the statement ----

    All Americans, not only in the States most heavily affected but in every place in this country, are rightly disturbed by the large numbers of illegal aliens entering our country. The jobs they hold might otherwise be held by citizens or legal immigrants. The public service they use impose burdens on our taxpayers. That's why our administration has moved aggressively to secure our borders more by hiring a record number of new border guards, by deporting twice as many criminal aliens as ever before, by cracking down on illegal hiring, by barring welfare benefits to illegal aliens. In the budget I will present to you, we will try to do more to speed the deportation of illegal aliens who are arrested for crimes, to better identify illegal aliens in the workplace as recommended by the commission headed by former Congresswoman Barbara Jordan. We are a nation of immigrants. But we are also a nation of laws. It is wrong and ultimately self-defeating for a nation of immigrants to permit the kind of abuse of our immigration laws we have seen in recent years, and we must do more to stop it.

    Posted by Nolan Rappaport
  2. California 'sanctuary state' bill is illegal, but also ineffective. By Nolan Rappaport

    © Getty

    Activist Dolores Huerta claims that California needs to enact the California Values Act, Senate Bill 54 (SB 54), as a counterweight to Texasís draconian law banning sanctuary cities in that state and President Donald Trumpís ďxenophobic agenda to deport millions of people.Ē

    I disagree. While I can understand why Huerta dislikes Texasís sanctuary city law, it is an exaggeration to call it ďdraconian.Ē And Trump is just enforcing immigration provisions that were written by Congress and signed into law by previous presidents. If those laws are xenophobic, the solution is to lobby Congress to change them.

    Making California a sanctuary state will not stop Trumpís enforcement efforts. But it would violate federal law and make California ineligible for certain types of federal grants.

    Legislative Counselís Digest of SB 54.

    SB 54 would repeal existing law which requires the police to notify U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) when there is reason to believe that a person arrested for a violation of specified controlled substance provisions may be an alien.

    It would, with some exceptions, prohibit state and local law enforcement agencies from using their resources to investigate, detain, or arrest persons for immigration enforcement purposes.

    Read more at ---

    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.

  3. Hawaii Federal Judge Enjoins Administration From Banning Muslim Grandparents of US Citizens or Refugees with Resettlement Agency Ties. Roger Algase

    Update, July 14, 8:54 pm:

    In reaction to the Hawaii federal District Court decision described below further limiting the scope of the president's six country Muslim ban order to permit grandparents of US citizens and refugees with ties to US resettlement organizations into the United States, Attorney General Jeff Sessions has vowed to appeal the ruling to the US Supreme Court.

    POLITICO reports Sessions' statement as follows:

    "By this decision, the district court has improperly substituted its policy preferences for the national security judgments of the Executive Branch and the directive of the Supreme Court."

    A reading of the rationale for the Hawaii District Court's decision, as quoted below, shows no intention on the part of that court to "substitute its own policy preferences" but merely to strike down an irrational distinction which the administration made, without any foundation, justification, or sanction from the Supreme Court, to exclude grandparents of US citizens from the list of relatives who are exempt from the ban for reasons that cannot possibly be linked to national security, but have everything to do with the often announced intention of the president and his openly Islamophobic top advisers, Stephen Bannon and Stephen Miller, to keep as many Muslims from entering the United States as the courts will let them get away with.

    While this may not be apparent on the surface of Sessions' remarks, his own well publicized support (in a 2015 immigration "Handbook" for Congressional Republicans) for returning to the dark, bigoted days of the infamous 1924 "Nordics only" immigration act, also raises well-justified suspicions that Trump's Muslim ban is also just the first step in a wider administration policy aimed at major cutbacks in non-white immigration from all over the world.

    On a lighter note, if readers will forgive a brief aside from the immigration area, Reuters reports that Trump has now hired Washington lawyer Ty Cobb, who is said to be related to his namesake, one of America's most famous baseball players of all time, to take charge of White House attempts to deal with the cascading Russia scandals relating to alleged attempts to compromise our electoral system, among many other allegation of possible wrongdoing involving Russia by Trump or the people around him.

    Ty Cobb is no doubt a top lawyer, but what is his batting average?

    My original comment appears below.

    In a rebuke to the Trump administration's attempt to interpret the Supreme Court's June 26 decision temporarily allowing it to uphold parts of the president's six Middle Eastern and African Muslim country citizen's entry ban order ("Muslim ban", for short, not the misleading and inadequate term "travel ban" often used by the media and, recently, by the president himself) as widely as possible, Judge Derrick Watson of the United States District Court for the District of Hawaii issued an injunction on July 13 which prohibits the federal government from barring grandparents of US citizens from entering the US pursuant to the Muslim ban on the grounds that they allegedly lack "close ties" with the United States within the meaning of the above Supreme Court ruling.

    The District Judge also enjoined the administration from enforcing the ban order against refugees who have contracts with US resettlement agencies. For the story and a link to the full decision of the Court in this case, Hawaii v. Trump, see:

    With regard to the ban on grandparents of US citizens on the grounds that a grandparent is allegedly not a close relative, the Court held that this interpretation was unreasonable and was contradicted by Supreme Court precedent. The Court cited the Supreme Court case of Moore v. City of E. Cleveland, 431 U.S. 494, 503-04 (1977) where the High Court stated that the:

    "tradition of uncles, aunts, cousins and especially grandparents sharing a household with parents and children has roots equally venerable and equally deserving of constitutional recognition."

    The District Court also cited a plurality opinion in Travel v. Granville, 530 U.S. 57, 63-65 (2000), where the Supreme Court stated:

    "[D]emographic changes of the past century make it difficult to speak of an average American family. The composition of families varies greatly from household to household...In many cases, grandparents play an important role."

    Finally on this point, the District Court, in refreshingly plain language for a judge, stated:

    "Equally problematic, the Government's definition represents the antithesis of common sense....Indeed, grandparents are the
    epitome of common close family members."

    One could also legitimately ask whether distinguishing between grandparents, who are excluded, and parents in law or step relatives, who are permitted to enter the US based on the administration's definition, makes any sense whatever in an executive order that is ostensibly based on national security considerations.

    Has the president made a finding that grandparents of US citizens are more at risk of committing terrorist acts than in-laws or step relatives of US citizens?

    This only goes to show that it is not only the administration's distinction between grandparents and other types of close relatives that makes no sense, but that the entire Muslim ban order, on its face, makes no sense either.

    The purported rationale for the ban order was that the government needs to improve and refine its "vetting" procedures for immigrants from the six targeted countries. But reviewing and enhancing screening and databases for admission of foreign citizens is something that, according to government statements, is going on all the time anyway.

    Where, within the four corners of Trump's current six country Muslim ban executive order, or its seven country predecessor, is there any showing that the danger to America from terrorist acts by citizens of the targeted countries is so urgent and acute as to justify banning almost the entire population of these countries, comprising nearly 200 million people, from entering the United States while the "review" of "vetting" procedures (which of course will last as long as Donald Trump is in office as president - everyone knows that the "temporary" ban is only a cynical joke)?

    Even without looking behind the surface language of Trump's Muslim ban, as the proponents of absolute presidential power over admissions to the US argue that the courts lack the power to do, it is obvious that the ban itself, solely on its face makes little or sense at all - unless the fundamental objective is to prevent as many Muslims as possible from entering the US - including but by no means limited to grandparents.

    Roger Algase
    Attorney at Law

    Updated 07-14-2017 at 10:42 PM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

  4. Wyoming Becoming 8th State to Join E-Verify RIDE

    By: Bruce Buchanan, Sebelist Buchanan Law PLLC

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    Wyoming will soon become the eighth state to join the Records and Information from DMVs for E-Verify (RIDE) Program. RIDE is an E-Verify initiative, in conjunction with the American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators, linking the E-Verify system with participating state driverís licensing agencies. The prior states joining RIDE were Florida, Idaho, Iowa, Mississippi, Nebraska, North Dakota, and Wisconsin.

    RIDE allows E-Verify to validate the authenticity of driverís licenses and state identification cards presented by employees as I-9 form identity documents. The RIDE program attempts to mitigate the risk of fraud by comparing the data from the card with data supplied by statesí motor vehicle agencies. If E-Verify is not able to match the license or ID card to data within the DMV, the employer will receive a Tentative Non-confirmation (TNC) indicating the issue and must give the employee a Further Action Notice and opportunity to meet I-9 demands. In this manner, RIDE is designed to boost the accuracy of employment eligibility verification in E-Verify.
  5. ICE Allegedly Instituting Deportations at Hospitals in Texas

    by , 07-13-2017 at 03:20 PM (Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal)
    Immigration lawyer Scott Hicks has reported a disturbing development out of Texas. He advises that clergy from the Mennonite Central Committee in Texas are reporting that on multiple occasions Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) is ignoring an October 24, 2011 "Enforcement Actions at or Focused on Sensitive Locations" memo, and are now instituting removal proceedings in hospitals. The memo was issued by former ICE Director John Morton and sets forth ICE's policy regarding enforcement actions by ICE officers and agents at or focused on sensitive locations.

    One of the reported "three or four" cases involved undocumented parents from Brownsville who had children transferred to Children's Hospital in Corpus Christi, Texas. ICE agents allegedly intercepted the parents in between registration and a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), also known as an intensive care nursery (ICN), that specializes in the care of ill or premature newborn infants. It has been reported that in each instance ICE did not arrest the parents, but issued a Notice to Appear in immigration court for removal proceedings. These reports if true shock the conscience.

    The sensitive location policy was designed to ensure that immigration enforcement actions do not occur at nor are focused on sensitive locations such as schools and hospitals unless exigent circumstances exist, or other law enforcement actions have led officers to a sensitive location. The enforcement actions covered by the policy include arrests, interviews, searches, and for purposes of immigration enforcement only surveillance.

    The sensitive locations covered include, but are not limited to:

    • Schools (including pre-schools, primary schools, secondary schools, post-secondary schools up to and including colleges and universities, and other institutions of learning such as vocational or trade schools);
    • Hospitals;
    • Churches, synagogues, mosques or other institutions of worship, such as buildings rented for the purpose of religious services;
    • The site of a funeral, wedding, or other public religious ceremony; and
    • A site during the occurrence of a public demonstration, such as a march, rally or parade.

    What is most troubling is that any planned enforcement action at or focused on a sensitive location generally must have prior approval by the Assistant Director of Operations, Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), the Executive Associate Director (EAD) of HSI, the Assistant Director for Field Operations, Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO), or the EAD of ERO. This includes planned enforcement actions at or focused on a sensitive location that is part of a joint case led by another law enforcement agency.

    So the question becomes, is this the work of rogue agents or has authorization been issued all the way from Washington? I will keep you posted as more information becomes available.
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