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Greg Siskind on Immigration Law and Policy

NYT: OBAMA TO ROLL OUT IMMIGRATION PLAN BEGINNING NEXT MONTH

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Julia Preston of the New York Times reports in a front page story this morning that the White House is keeping its promise and will push hard for immigration reform this year. According to the story:

While acknowledging that the recession makes the political battle more difficult, President Obama plans to begin addressing the country's immigration system this year, including looking for a path for illegal immigrants
to become legal, a senior administration official said on Wednesday.

Mr. Obama will frame the new effort -- likely to rouse passions on
all sides of the highly divisive issue -- as "policy reform that
controls immigration and makes it an orderly system," said the
official, Cecilia Muñoz, deputy assistant to the president and director
of intergovernmental affairs in the White House.

Mr. Obama plans
to speak publicly about the issue in May, administration officials
said, and over the summer he will convene working groups, including
lawmakers from both parties and a range of immigration groups, to begin
discussing possible legislation for as early as this fall.

Some
White House officials said that immigration would not take precedence
over the health care and energy proposals that Mr. Obama has identified
as priorities. But the timetable is consistent with pledges Mr. Obama
made to Hispanic groups in last year's campaign.

Of course, despite pronouncements by some legislators that the fight for reform will not be difficult, the reality is that immigration bills ALL have difficulty moving and pro-immigration advocates will have to fight hard and be willing to compromise if this opportunity is not to be squandered.

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  1. Another voice's Avatar
    It seems like he is committed to fulfill his campaign promise and deal with the issue within the first 100 days. However from here until the fall its a long time for the antis to get the public opinion worked up about it, given the current situation of the country. But then again there will never be a right time for immigration regardless of the economic situation.
  2. Anu's Avatar
    Greg, As you know H1B cap has only reached half way mark. If the Nursing positions are to be made eligible for H1B, does it need a legislation or can USCIS do this? Hope the Healthcare facilities, AAIHR, AILA, Attorneys etc. will advocate for this option since Nurses are urgently needed in USA. Even if this is not made possible this year, at least Nurses can apply next year. I was told by my agent that only specific category of nurses are eligible to apply and under present law it is very difficult to get H1 B visa for Nurses.
  3. Jim's Avatar
    There is a Fox news article that's sort of trying to douse the articles from NYtimes.

    "But the White House downplayed the report, with a spokesman telling FOX News the president consistently said the debate over immigration reform would start this year. The spokesman said nobody is claiming the problem will be fixed this year."

    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/first100days/2009/04/08/report-obama-campaign-pledge-push-immigration/

    That article is obviously base and is a respinse to the NYTimes article


    Very confusing....
  4. AD's Avatar
    WH is testing waters.

    All those who are thinking that every one is talking about CIR and most of the people are saying that CIR will happen, stop a sec and make sure you note that the people whom you are talking to are NOT people who will talk about CIR and NOT pro/anti CIR.

    Also starting the debate is a very very cautious statement compared to we want to get it done. Who knows? President will ask for it and congress might snub it and president gets away with no issues.

    This is the first main stream media article and lets see how things go from here.
  5. Greg Siskind's Avatar
    Nurses are eligible for the H-1B depending on the position and we've had more success of late with these cases. So today's news is good for that sector.
  6. George Chell's Avatar
    I am very skeptical that the CIR debate would happen this year. Obama may talk about it in bits and pieces but doubtful that in the current atmosphere, there would be any movement in Congress.
  7. George Chell's Avatar
    I looked very hard at the Detroit newspapers and TV this morning. Did not see FAIR and CIS or for that matter Kirkorian and Stein protesting this..so much for the lip service these clowns provide to training more Americans instead of depending on foreigners!

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090409/ap_on_re_us/detroit_schools

  8. Another voice's Avatar
    CNN is reporting on this also:

    http://www.cnn.com/2009/POLITICS/04/09/obama.immigration/index.html
  9. gg's Avatar
    The antis are going to vote the same way and the pros are going to vote the same way; regardless they try to push CIR this year or the next year or the year after that. Its only to be seen how Obama is successful in swaying the moderates to support this bill. So better push the CIR when Dems are in majority!!.

  10. Sir real's Avatar
    This can/will be the decider for Obama's second term, if he hold on to his promise of CIR this is the time to pass it, If he manages to pass it then the Hispanic Caucus will swing him to power even stronger that they did this election, if he fails, it will interesting to see how the elections fare.

    Also if the CIR does not get voted in 2009 it wont during Obama's present Tenure. As the timing gets all screwed up. Lets see if any of the GOPs have learnt a lesson from past election losses.
  11. obama's Avatar
    White house backtracks on immigration, i guess it was just NYT trying to sensationalize.

    "White House spokesman Robert Gibbs in the briefing just reiterated Shapiro's laments: "That story could have been written a year ago based off of what he's said on the campaign trail... I don't think [Obama] thinks it could be done this year.""

    http://tinyurl.com/d44qph
  12. Jim's Avatar
    "The antis are going to vote the same way and the pros are going to vote the same way; regardless they try to push CIR this year or the next year or the year after that. Its only to be seen how Obama is successful in swaying the moderates to support this bill. So better push the CIR when Dems are in majority!!"

    - Ditto. Not only that, notable Republicans like Sen. Mel Martinez supportive of CIR will not be a Senator anymore in 2011. Then there's the health of the good Senator Kennedy.

    I think there is more reasons to try and force it to be done this year rather than later.
  13. Jack's Avatar
    'the recession makes the political battle more difficult'

    Talk about out of touch! They see the economy just as a political impediment and apparently are not concerned how the vast number of unemployed Americans actually would be affected by, e.g., the mother of all guest worker programs (which is always one of the components of CIR). That's the baby of the indentured foreign labor lobby and does the Obama administration think they can just leave that out this time and maintain the special interest alliance necessary for passage? Or are they seriously going to stick with mega-guest worker in this employment market? Good luck selling that and prepare to duck like Bush from flying shoes if you do.

    So did former lobbyist Munoz step in something or what? The backpedaling makes it look that way but is it realistic to think someone as experienced in politics as she would suddenly become an insubordinate ethno-warrior and go out on her own in speaking for the president in an attempt to force her issue? AD's idea that it's more of a trial balloon is more plausible like with Tiny Tim's trial balloons to see how much he can protect the crap bond holders at the expense of the tax payers without an uproar.
  14. Greg Siskind's Avatar
    jack - just keep rooting for the recession to keep going.
  15. Jack's Avatar
    Greg, I am trying to make sense of how any politician is going to stand up for guest worker at this unemployment rate (and which is a trailing indicator). It's going to be high in the fall by all accounts. What do you think the chances are that the Democrats will bring forth a bill with no guest worker program in it? I am thinking that could be the idea which will shore up the left who waver over the inclusion of guest worker and are soft on enforcement but watered down enforcement will galvanize the SAVE Act Dems. And then how do you pick up business shill Republicans with no guest worker? Maybe they just stick with the law enforcement Republicans?
  16. gg's Avatar
    http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2009-04-09/why-obamarsquos-smart-to-tackle-immigration-now/
  17. Jim's Avatar
    The US economy is already showing signs of near bottoming out within the next few months. It will probably stabilize somewhere in the latter months of the year and start recovering modestly in 2010. That's the consensus of majority of economists regardless of partisanship.

    There's always an excuse for antis. The market was at it's peak in the first half of 2007 when they were trying to push for the CIR.

    The US is in recession since Dec. of 2007 and already in the process of bottoming out and recovering in 2010.

    Doing CIR in 2009 could not be in a better time.
  18. George Chell's Avatar
    CNN is reporting that discussions on CIR will start in May, but a White House source says that while hearings may be held this year, legislation and vote on it may not happen this year.
  19. Jim's Avatar
    "CNN is reporting that discussions on CIR will start in May, but a White House source says that while hearings may be held this year, legislation and vote on it may not happen this year."

    I kind of leaning towards the notion that it was indeed a trial balloon to get a pulse of what the people thinks.

  20. Jim's Avatar
    Chief of Staff Rahm Emmanuel now supports CIR: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123931821992806781.html

    How significant is this? If any at all.
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