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Well-Known Restrictionist Group Condemns Trump's Muslim Immigrant Ban. Roger Algase

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It is FAIR to say that few, if any, organizations have been more consistent and vocal in calling for reduced immigration to the US than the Federation for Immigration Reform (FAIR). No one can possibly accuse this organization of being biased in favor of immigrants or of overlooking any argument that there may be in favor of imposing greater restrictions on just about every immigration category that exists.

However, even FAIR has issued a statement opposing Donald Trump's proposal for a "temporary", but indefinite ban on immigration or entry to the US by Muslims solely on the basis of religion.

As discussed in my January 15 ilw.com post, Trumps has turned down every opportunity to withdraw his proposal. He has never even clarified whether or not it also includes prohibiting Muslim US citizens from reentering this country, which would be an obvious violation of the Constitution.

On December 8, 2015, FAIR's president, Dan Stein, issued a statement in response to Trump's Muslim immigration comments in which he said the following:

"Donald Trump's assertion that we categorically bar admission to people solely on the basis of their religious identity is one that runs counter to American values,...

FAIR does not support immigration restrictions based solely on religious faith in the absence of other factors that indicate an inability to support our constitutional framework."

For Stein's full statement, see:

http://fairus.org/news/fairs-statement-on-donald-trump-s-muslim-immigration-comments

Instead of supporting a ban based solely on religion, FAIR's statement supports increased security measures in order to make sure that people who are threats to public safety or opposed to our constitutional values and freedoms are not allowed entry.

This puts the immigration issue squarely where it belongs, namely on security, not on religious belief. One also has to be careful in extending the bar against entry to someone who may not believe in the US constitution or its values, but who presents no threat to US security.

This is the exact issue that was presented in the 1972 Supreme Court case of Kleindienst v. Mandel, in which a refusal to issue a visa to a Marxist academic who believed in a form of government antithetical to the US constitution, but who admittedly presented no threat to US security, was upheld.

Based on that decision, and based on FAIR's above statement that Trump's proposed Muslim entry ban solely on the basis of religion is opposed to American values (not to mention banning Muslim US citizens in direct opposition to the First Amendment to the Constitution), one could even ask whether Trump himself would be eligible for a US visa if he were a non-US citizen seeking entry to this country.
________________________________
Roger Algase is a New York immigration lawyer and a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School. For more than 35 years, he has been helping mainly skilled and professional immigrants from many different nationalities and ethnic/religious backgrounds obtain work visas and green cards.

Roger's email address is algaselex@gmail.com

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Updated 01-16-2016 at 08:31 AM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

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Comments

  1. Unregistered222's Avatar
    And our next president Donald still is going up in polls What he also needs to address is more severe criminal punishments for fraudulent immigration lawyers who are misrepresenting fake "refugee" claims. Hopefully he will get to it soon enough once sworn in. He can use executive orders instrument to do that )))
  2. Retired INS's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Unregistered222
    And our next president Donald still is going up in polls What he also needs to address is more severe criminal punishments for fraudulent immigration lawyers who are misrepresenting fake "refugee" claims. Hopefully he will get to it soon enough once sworn in. He can use executive orders instrument to do that )))
    Amen!!! I spent 39 years working for immigration and corrupt immigration lawyers were a big problem. Because there has been no new legislation in many years, there are few immigrants with money who need an immigration attorney. The key words here are "with money." Many immigrants pay on the installment basis. If the benefit is granted before the attorney has been paid in full, the payments stop. That is why some attorneys illegally hold on to foreign passports and other documents to force full payment. I could go on and on about immigration lawyers who have been disbarred for bad behavior. That said, there are many good attorneys, but unless they deal in highly skilled workers, there isn't much money to be made today. One of the best immigration attorney I know is now an immigration judge in Los Angeles because the federal paycheck is more reliable than payments from immigrant clients. Even worse than the attorneys are the immigration consultants found in California. They should be banned.
  3. ImmigrationLawBlogs's Avatar
    Neither of the above two comments is responsive to my comment. FAIR, as everyone knows, has a reputation for having a lower opinion of immigrants, and their lawyers, than almost anyone else. Few if any organizations in America have fought harder and more tenaciously than FAIR to prevent immigrants from being able to get green cards or visas, and to make it difficult for immigration lawyers to help their clients achieve their goals.

    Yet even this fiercely anti-immigrant group thinks that Trump has gone too far by trying to keep Muslims out of the United States purely because of their religious beliefs, even if there is no evidence that a particular individual has any terrorist connections. His ban would apply even to Kurdish and other Muslim leaders whose soldiers are helping America in the fight against ISIS.

    If FAIR is wrong in opposing Donald Trump on this issue, it is not because they are being influenced by "greedy" or "crooked" immigration lawyers. It might just be because even FAIR believes in America as a country of religious freedom.

    Roger Algase
    Attorney at Law


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