Skip to main content


By Wendy Sefsaf

Congress has been unable to pass any meaningful immigration legislation this year, but the House couldn’t miss a chance to stick it to immigrants by going after their U.S. citizen children in a recent tax bill. While Americans are debating whether taxes on millionaires should be raised, the House, at least, is planning to raise taxes on the most vulnerable of American citizens.

Continue Reading

By Ben Winograd

Earlier today, the Supreme Court announced what many supporters and opponents of Arizona SB 1070 long expected: that the Justices will themselves have the final word on the validity of the injunctions entered shortly after the law was enacted last year. Technically, the question before the Justices is simply whether four of the law’s provisions should be temporarily blocked pending resolution of a larger legal challenge. In addition, the Court will not consider claims raised in a separate lawsuit by numerous immigrants’ and civil rights groups. But in the decision it ultimately issues, the Supreme Court may well provide broad guidance about what role, if any, local police may play in enforcing federal immigration law—which could in turn affect legal challenges to copycat laws in other states, such as Alabama.

Continue Reading

By Geena Jackson

Immigration is a hot issue in the GOP primary debates, complete with extreme anti-immigrant rhetoric and far-fetched policy proposals. Michele Bachman, for example, promised to deport every undocumented immigrant in the country—a costly and unworkable task. And she’s not the only one. Herman Cain recently “joked” that he would electrify the border fence as a deterrent for unauthorized crossers. But Republican presidential candidates have it wrong when it comes to anti-immigrant rhetoric and their base. Recent polls suggest that a majority of conservative voters actually favor a path to legal status for unauthorized immigrants. In fact, several polls found that the majority of Americans prefer a path to legalization for unauthorized immigrants currently in the U.S.

Continue Reading

By Mary Giovagnoli

The firestorm around the inclusion of the term “anchor baby” in the new edition of the American Heritage Dictionary has led to a dramatic reversal in the definition. Not only did the executive editor, Steven Kleinelder, emphatically apologize for the initial definition, he promised swift action to change it. By Monday morning, the term was labeled as “offensive.” By Monday afternoon, a new definition appeared online, one that was crafted to reflect more accurately just how artificial a term it really is:

Continue Reading

By Wendy Sefsaf

In the past several days news reports have depicted good old American ingenuity taking on our broken and outdated immigration system. CNN ran a story last week from Georgia about a handful of educators who have taken matters into their own hands after the state’s Board of Regents passed an extreme law in 2010 banning undocumented immigrant children from attending Georgia’s top public colleges and universities—banned despite the fact that these kids pay three times the rate of other in-state students due to their immigration status.

Continue Reading

By Mary Giovagnoli

The degree to which the immigration debate has coarsened over the last few years is no more evident than in the pages of the recently released fifth edition of the New American Heritage Dictionary. Among the new entries is the term “anchor baby.” You might think that the definition would read something like: slang, a pejorative description of a child born in the United States to parents without legal status, implying that the parents intend to leverage the child’s citizenship to “anchor” their own presence in the U.S.”  You would be wrong.

Continue Reading

By Walter Ewing

Anti-immigrant activists like to pretend that immigrants are destined to be poor and to never successfully integrate into U.S. society. However, a new report from the Center for American Progress (CAP) concludes that, in reality, “immigrants are integrating into American life, learning English, and becoming homeowners.” When socioeconomic advancement is tracked over time, it becomes clear that “far from a life in poverty, immigrants are exemplifying the American Dream.” The report, entitled Assimilation Tomorrow, was co-authored by renowned demographer Dowell Myers (a professor in the School of Policy, Planning, and Development at the University of Southern California) and by John Pitkin (president of Analysis and Forecasting, Inc., in Cambridge, Massachusetts). This report is the companion piece to another study which was released by CAP last year, entitled Assimilation Today.

Continue Reading

By Seth Hoy

You know things are bad when a company as popular as Facebook has problems finding qualified talent. In a recent interview, Facebook’s chief operating officer, Sheryl Sandberg, remarked that our outdated immigration policy is a big reason Silicon Valley tech companies are fighting each other for highly skilled workers. Current immigration policy limits high-skilled worker visas (H-1B) to only 65,000 per year—a number that hardly meets demand. Even technology giant Microsoft recently testified before Congress that current immigration policies make finding talent a serious challenge. Until lawmakers revamp our outdated immigration system, technology companies like Facebook and Microsoft will continue to lose out on the foreign talent they need to stay ahead of the curve.

Continue Reading

By Wendy Sefsaf

As each day passes under Alabama’s new, highly restrictive immigration law (HB56), it is becoming increasingly clear that facts (and numbers) had very little to do with the passage of the law—and that they continue to be ignored as state officials defend the law. In fact, this willful disregard of facts and data may mean Alabama is about to pay a very high price for a small problem.

Continue Reading

By Walter Ewing

Times have changed along the U.S.-Mexico border. In just a few short years, Mexican drug cartels have taken over the people-smuggling business. Although U.S. border walls and fences have proliferated, they have done nothing to prevent the cartels from moving drugs, human beings, guns, and money back and forth across the border. The combination of heightened U.S. border enforcement and cartel violence has made crossing the border increasingly dangerous. Yet large numbers of unauthorized immigrants who were previously deported from  the United States continue to risk their lives by crossing the border in order to reunite with their U.S. families. The Obama Administration’s current enforcement policies treat these family-bound migrants like hardened criminals, while failing to address the real threat to securitythe cartels.

Continue Reading

By Geena Jackson

In a recent speech to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg highlighted the vital role immigrants play in stimulating economic growth. Bloomberg called for immigration policies that “spur innovation, increase the number of entrepreneurs who start businesses here, and create jobs for Americans on every rung of the economic ladder." With U.S. unemployment still hovering around 9%, some declining U.S. cities are also looking to harness the economic and entrepreneurial power of immigrants. Small towns, particularly in America’s rust belt, are contemplating programs that attract immigrant growth in hopes of revitalizing their towns and universities.

Continue Reading

By Seth Hoy

This week, U.S. District Judge Sharon Blackburn failed to enjoin major provisions of Alabama’s extreme immigration law, HB 56, a law designed to drive unauthorized immigrants from the state. Under the law, police officers are now required to demand proof of legal status from anyone who seems foreign. School administrators are required to ask children about their immigration status and that of their parents. People and businesses—including utilities companies—are encouraged not to enter into contracts with anyone who cannot prove their legal status. While some anti-immigrant groups are celebrating the judge’s decision, Alabama businesses and state agencies may ultimately bear the economic brunt of this damaging law.

Continue Reading
You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.

RSS

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site