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Greg Siskind on Immigration Law and Policy

USCIS TELLING NATURALIZATION APPLICANTS NOT TO EXPECT TO GET CITIZENSHIP BEFORE NOVEMBER 2008 ELECTION

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Unbelievable!

USCIS is advising applicants who filed naturalization applications after July 2007, that they can expect waits of 16 to 18 months to process their cases. This potentially affects nearly one and a half million people.



This is, in effect, a stealth form of voter suppression and it is one that could have an impact on elections around the country. This is particularly suspicious this year as recent polls are showing Hispanic voters overwhelmingly shifting their votes to the Democrats and Hispanics making up a large enough part of the electorate to affect races in "purple" states like Nevada, New Mexico, Colorado and Florida that the GOP must hold to have any chance at winning the presidential race next year.



USCIS is blaming the surge in naturalization filings ahead of the July 31st massive 50% fee increase (it now costs more than $600 to file). The fee increases were coupled with a by USCIS chief Emilio Gonzalez to REDUCE processing times.



The New York Times is also reporting on the story.

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Comments

  1. Another voice's Avatar
    Offcourse not that way republicans do not have to fear the minority vote and democrats can be mopre at ease should they want to take their time on Immigration reform.
  2. A's Avatar
    I think dems should now realise that how important it is to make this bureaucracy work , congress can legalize all the millions they want but if the agency is not able / not willing to process the applications with in a reasonable time frame , its as good as denying these benifits.

    If the agency behaves this way with potential citizens, I can only imagine their attitude when it comes to AOS petitions Good luck all July 2nd filers.
  3. hmm's Avatar
    Not sure what this fuss is about. I know quite a few people who spent 2-3-4 years waiting for naturalization due to name check. You say 18 months is long wait? The courts do not really think so. Anything under 2 years is considered business as usual.
  4. legal-forever-waiting-forever's Avatar

    18 mnths is the minimum, the basal processing time they need-
    without getting stuck in name checks
    if you get unlucky, it will be years...
  5. Grace's Avatar
    Hmm, I think you need to do your homework on actual processing time for most N-400 cases. Until recently, naturalization cases for most individuals took about 6-12 months to process, and I have seen cases processed to approval in less than 4 months. Security checks do delay some cases, but they have been the exception, not the rule. Also, telling people that delays of years are simply business is usual is unconscionable.

    This delay also is significant because it's going to impact a lot of children of LPRs who are filing for naturalization. If you are here as an LPR child, and either of your parents becomes a citizen before you turn 18, you are automatically a US citizen, and don't need to file your own application for naturalization. If it now takes the agency 18 months to process naturalizations, there are a lot of families who will have to pay up to file N-400s for the kids that would not have been required under the previous processing times.
  6. 's Avatar
    "Also, telling people that delays of years are simply business is usual is unconscionable."

    But its not against the law. If the immigration service wants to take 2 days, 2 years or 20 years to process an application, it is well within its rights to do as it wishes.
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