Bloggings on Immigration Law and Policy
This is an odd story that my friend Kenneth Levine, an immigration lawyer in Atlanta, sent me. Kevin Venhuis, the deputy sheriff in Abbeville, Alabama, is facing deportation because he lacks legal immigration status. He's Canadian and has apparently been in the US for 25 years and has apparently just blended in. He married a US citizen a few years back and tried to get a green card, but divorced before the process finished.
Alabama's new immigration law ensnared him. His problems started when he was pulled over in a traffic stop and his immigration status was checked. And being the deputy sheriff, he had various firearms which triggered being charged with various deportable offenses.
What struck Ken is the hypocrisy on display here. I've seen many people defend the tough crackdown on illegally present immigrants, but suddenly change their tune when someone they know is affected. Or someone from one of the "good" countries is affected. People love to be hawks on enforcement as long as they don't actually know much about the people they want to exile.
The US Census is confirming what other reports have already been showing. From Politico:
New census data released Thursday affirm a clear and sustained drop in illegal immigration, ending more than a decade of increases.Interestingly, new reports on the falling American birth rate and its long term economic implications are also circulating. Which just puts an additional onus on those opposing immigration to the US.
The number of illegal immigrants in the U.S. dropped to an estimated 11.1 million last year from a peak of 12 million in 2007, part of an overall waning of Hispanic immigration. For the first time since 1910, Hispanic immigration last year was topped by immigrants from Asia.
Demographers say illegal Hispanic immigration - 80 percent of all illegal immigration comes from Mexico and Latin America - isn't likely to approach its mid-2000 peak again, due in part to a weakened U.S. economy and stronger enforcement but also a graying of the Mexican population.
The finding suggests an uphill battle for the Republicans, who passed legislation in the House last week that would extend citizenship to a limited pool of foreign students with advanced degrees but who are sharply divided on whether to pursue broader immigration measures.
From ABC News:
"In early 2007 DeMint also fought for common-sense immigration reform by leading the effort to defeat the amnesty bill and calling on government to first secure our borders, enforce the laws already passed, and streamline the legal immigration system," reads his official Senate biography.
DeMint continued to advocate for tough immigration enforcement measures in the next Congress. In 2010, he attempted to pass an amendment that would have required the government to complete 700 miles of fencing along the U.S.-Mexico border within one year. During one such effort to attach the amendment to a separate piece of legislation, he compared illegal immigration to an oil leak.
"If any member of the Senate stood up today and said that we should not seal the oil leak in the Gulf until we have a comprehensive plan to clean it up, we would all say that that is absurd. Certainly we need to seal that leak as quickly as possible to minimize the cleanup later," he said. "But that is exactly the kind of logic that the president and my Democratic colleagues are using when it comes to immigration."
Pro-immigration reform advocates cheered DeMint's departure, since he played influential role in rallying conservative opposition to the last immigration overhaul. "The chances for immigration reform with a pathway to citizenship for 12 million undocumented people just went up," Frank Sharry, executive director of America's Voice, told ABC/Univision. "It's good news for us.
December 06, 2012
Greg Siskind is a partner in Siskind Susser's Memphis, Tennessee, office. After graduating magna cum laude from Vanderbilt University, he received his Juris Doctorate from the University of Chicago. Mr. Siskind is a member of AILA, a board member of the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society, and a member of the ABA, where he serves on the LPM Publishing Board as Marketing Vice Chairman. He is the author of several books, including the J Visa Guidebook and The Lawyer's Guide to Marketing on the Internet. Mr. Siskind practices all areas of immigration law, specializing in immigration matters of the health care and technology industries. He can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.