Saturday, July 28, 2012

New Archbishop Supports Immigration Reform but Opposes Same-Sex Marriage

From the San Francisco Chronicle:

San Francisco's new archbishop has risen to the top of the Catholic hierarchy by tackling in the most strident terms the hot-button issues facing the church.

After California voters banned same-sex marriage in 2008, Salvatore Cordileone told a Catholic radio show that "the ultimate attack of the Evil One is the attack on marriage."

Organizers of Proposition 8 said Cordileone was key to getting the measure before voters. . . .

But Cordileone also has taken more liberal stances on immigration and the death penalty. He favors a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants, and opposed the federal Secure Communities program to require local law enforcement to send the fingerprints of arrestees to federal officials and checked against an immigration database.

He was one of the early supporters of Proposition 34, the measure on the November ballot that would ban the death penalty and replace it with life without parole. Read more...


July 28, 2012 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Housekeepers Call to Boycott Hyatt

From Services, Immigrant Rights and Education Network (SIREN):

Dear Friends,                                                                                                                                  Version en Español esta más abajo.

Housekeepers nationwide need your help. If you’ve ever stayed at a Hyatt and had a good night’s sleep, you have a housekeeper to thank for your fresh sheets and fluffed pillows. But invisible to hotel guests is the pain and hardship that housekeepers endure to provide us with an atmosphere of comfort and luxury.

That’s why this week Hyatt housekeepers are launching a global boycott of Hyatt. Please take two seconds to support them by voting Hyatt the Worst Hotel Employer in America.

Why is Hyatt the worst? Hyatt has replaced career housekeepers with temp workers earning minimum wage. Hyatt housekeepers have heavy workloads that can lead to debilitating pain and injuries. Hyatt has fired women shortly after they have spoken out about abuse and indignities at work. And Hyatt even turned heat lamps on workers protesting these conditions during a brutal Chicago heat wave.

Worldwide, we are calling on two million people to take a stand and Vote Hyatt Worst.  By joining together, we will urge Hyatt to change its ways.

Hyatt Hurts! They’re the Worst!


July 28, 2012 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

"More Prop Than Cop"? Sheriff Joe's Fight for His Survival

It has been an interesting week in Arizona as Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio's racial profiling trial continued.  The case has all the ingredients for a television movie, with a famous Sheriff standing trial for civil rights violations, celebrity children (G. Gordon Liddy's son is a defense lawyer in the case), and more.  With the November election fast approaching, Arpaio might be getting a bit concerned about his prospects of relection as Sheriff.  As the trial unfolds, public opinion about him and his methods might be changing for the worse.

Summarizing testimony in which Arpaio's subordinates seek to distance themselves and the operations of the Maricopa County Shjeriff's Office from the controversial Sheriff, Laurie Roberts penned a column in the Arizona Republic stating that

"Put another way, 80-year-old Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio is really more prop than cop, like those blow-up dolls that drivers used to install in their passenger seat so they could sneak into the carpool lane." (emphasis added).

Among other things, the evidence so far shows that Sheriff Arpaio passed on to subordinates racially insenitive constituent complaints -- with the most offensive words and phrases highlighted, denied that he should be held accountable for statements in his book (Joe's Law)  that Mexican immigrants refuse to assimilate ("my co-author wrote that," was his response), and that real people felt humiliated and embarrassed by what they believed to be race-based stops.

By the way, the claim that Mexicans fail to assimilate long has been a stock argument in the efforts to curtail immigration to the United States from Mexico.  I addressed that argument in an article in the California Law Review ("Melting Pot" or "Ring of Fire"?  Assimilation and the Mexican American Experienece) in 1997, and analyzed the history in the United States of claims that different waves of immigrants, including Germans, Irish, Chinese, and Mexicans allegedly "failed to assimilate."

Even if his relection is in jeopardy, Sheriff Joe will not go without a fight.  Americans for Sheriff Joe is attempting to raise more money for the Arpaio relection campaign.   Millions of out-of-state dollars reportedly have flowed into the campaign.  The list of "Enemies of Sheriff Joe" on the Americans for Sheriff Joe website include most of the people of color in the administration, including Attorney General Eric Holder, Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis, Cecelia Munoz in the White House, and Thomas Perez, head of the Civil Rights Division in the Department of Justice.

Never backing away from controversy -- and perhaps looking for it, On the eve of his latest trial, Sheriff Arpaio held a press conference announcing that his volunteer "posse" of "investigators" concluded that President Obama's Hawaii birth certificate was forged and he thereforre was not eligible to be President.  Arpaio had previously announced in March that there was "probable cause" to believe that the President's birth certificate was a forgery.


July 28, 2012 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Friday, July 27, 2012

New Americans Represent US at London Games

Photo courtesy of Wikipedia

The 2012 Olympics started today in London.  Immigration Impact reminds us that Team USA is made up of many "new Americans."  38 of those competing on Team USA are naturalized U.S. citizens. Among them:

Lopez Lomong (Men’s 5000M), born in southern Sudan

Khatuna Lorig (Archery), former Soviet Union

Meb Keflezighi (Marathon), Eritrea

Janet Cherobon-Bawcom (Women’s 10,000M), Kenya

Nick Delpopolo (Judo), Montenegro


July 27, 2012 in Current Affairs, Sports | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Tourism Boosts U.S. Economy

More than 50 million foreign tourists travel to the United States each year.

From the San Francisco Chronicle:

For Leon Goldberg, the used clothes piling up at the lost-and-found at the New York Marriott Marquis hotel at Times Square are the latest sign that tourists are spending.

"People come over with empty suitcases, and we see them leave with full suitcases," while abandoning their older garments, said Goldberg, director of sales and marketing at the 1,957-room hotel.

Spending by overseas visitors on everything from airfares to hotel stays climbed 8.1 percent over the 12 months ended in May to $13.9 billion, figures from the Commerce Department show. The increase was almost double the 4.2 percent gain in total exports.

Purchases by foreign tourists count as exports, which have been among the mainstays of the three-year economic expansion.

More Latin American and Asian visitors are offsetting a slowdown in trips from Europe, where a weaker euro is making travel to the United States more expensive. The pickup in tourism, which Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke called a "bright spot" in the economy, is benefiting companies such as San Francisco Shuttle Tours, Marriott International Inc., City Pass and bolstering the labor market. Read more....


July 27, 2012 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Pro Boxer Alfredo Angulo in Immigration Lockup

ImmigrationProf previously has reported on the U.S. immigration woes of the exciting professional boxer Alfredo Angulo, whose last fight was an exciting 2011 technical knockout loss to James Kirkland

Gabriel Montoya on MaxBoxing reports that Angulo has been in immigration detention in El Centro, California since January 2012. His attorneys reportedly hope to clear things up in immigration court soon.


UPDATE (July 30):  Here is an interview of Angulo while in ICE ddetrention.



July 27, 2012 in Current Affairs, Sports | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Justice Scalia Defends Dissent in Arizona v. United States


In an interview to be aired on C-SPAN next Sunday, Justice Scalia defended his dissent in part in Arizona v. United States, in which he criticized the Obama administration's recent announcement for deferred action on undocumented immigrants brought to this country as minors. 

Justice Scalia's opinion in the case has been criticized by, among others, Judge Richard Posner.


July 26, 2012 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

George Mason Post Doc on Demography, Immigration

From George Mason University:

The George Mason University, Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Institute for Immigration Research (IIR) invites applications for a one-year, renewable position as a Postdoctoral Fellow with a background in sociology, economics, demography, or a related field beginning August 25, 2012.  The IIR is a newly formed, privately funded initiative to explore the contributions of immigrants to the U.S. economy.

The successful candidate’s areas of specialization will include immigration, economic, social and political consequences of migration, quality of life, and the overall issues related to immigration policy.

Successful applicants must have a working knowledge and background in demography and GIS, as well as knowledge of statistical software—in particular SPSS or Stata.

This position is critical to the success of the IIR and requires the full understanding and active participation in fulfilling the Mission of IIR. Must be able to work collaboratively with IIR faculty/staff and communicate results clearly in oral and written form.

For more information contact Jim Witte, Professor of Sociology and IIR Research Director


July 26, 2012 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

New Multilingual Resource Center Now Available

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services has launched the new Multilingual Resource Center. This site is a hub for USCIS materials offered in foreign languages, and features 13 newly translated “How Do I…” guides in Chinese. The guides are also available in Spanish on the USCIS Español site.


July 26, 2012 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

The World of Disney? Calm Returns to the OC After Nights of Riots

CNN reports that, affter four nights of rioting, Anaheim, California, in the heart of the famous Orange County and Disneyland (the self-proclaimed "happiest place on earth"), is now calm after federal authorities agreed to examine police shootings in the city, including one last Saturday.  Police shot and killed two men in Anaheim over the weekend, but it was Saturday afternoon's shooting of Manuel Diaz, whom police characterized as a "gang member." Days of protest and confrontations with police followed.

As often is the case in news stories posted on the internet, the comments were most jarring.  One jumps out:

"Known mexican gang members what's the problem? They should be used for target practice whenever there's an opportunity."

When I last checked the comment had received 68 "likes". 

As the comment suggests, racial tensions underlie the unrest in Anahiem, which were unleashed by the police shootings.  For analyis of the tensions in Anaheim, click here.


July 26, 2012 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Money Transfer Company Sponsors Peru Olympic Team

Each year, immigrants in the United States send billions of dollars in remittances to loved ones in their native countries.

From the San Francisco Chronicle:

For the 2012 Games, San Francisco money-transfer service Xoom is apparently establishing an Olympic first.

Xoom, whose customer base is largely connected to Latin America, has become a sponsor of the Peruvian Olympic team.

Spokeswoman Theresa Pasinosky said that, according to the International Olympic Committee, Xoom is the first company to sponsor another country's team without sponsoring its own nation's.

Its Latin American immigrant customers, who use the service to send money to their home countries, spurred the decision, Pasinosky said. Xoom has 130 employees in San Francisco and transferred $1.7 billion in 2011.

While Colombia, Ecuador and Mexico were considered for sponsorship, Xoom choose Peru because its small contingent of 16 athletes meant the money would likely have the most direct impact. The company's initial $18,000 sponsorship is being supplemented by about $30,000 raised in donations from the company and private individuals, Pasinosky said.

"The living standards of athletes representing Peru are just unimaginable by American standards," she said. "How they made it to the Olympics is just amazing." Read more....


July 26, 2012 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Liddy Returns! Son of G. Gordon Liddy Represents Maricopa County in Melendres v. Arpaio


Photo courtesy of Wikipedia

We have been updating blog readers about the racial profiling trial in Arizona in which Sheriff Joe Arpaio and the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office stands accused of engaging in a patter and practice of discrimination. One interesting twist to the case is that Tom Liddy, son of infamous Watergate figure G. Gordon Liddy of President Nixon's White House (and now talk show host), is the attorney representing Maricopa County.  

According to the Phoenix New Times, "Liddy a former Congressional candidate [is] a bit of showman, wearing orange reading glasses and choosing not to stand at a podium but instead strutting before witness Ralph Taylor holding a mic in his hand like he's hosting a talk show."  It appears that Liddy, like his father, is a radio talk show host.


July 26, 2012 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Immigration Article of the Day: When Women Were Aliens: The Neglected History of Derivative Marital Citizenship by Helen Irving


When Women Were Aliens: The Neglected History of Derivative Marital Citizenship by Helen Irving (University of Sydney - Faculty of Law)

 Abstract: Between the mid-nineteenth and mid-twentieth centuries, in virtually every country in the world, women who married foreign men were stripped of their citizenship, and turned into aliens in their own country. Marital denaturalization laws were supported by the international community until well after the Second World War: single citizenship, family unity, diplomatic convenience, and inter-state comity, were treated as imperatives that overrode women’s independent personal status. Such laws, which expanded at the very time when women were gaining legal and political rights, impacted radically, sometimes tragically, on individual lives, including rendering many thousands of women stateless. This essay gives an account of the emergence and evolution of such laws, with particular reference to Britain and the United States. It provides a ‘snapshot’ of individual cases, and an overview of the international community’s response.


July 26, 2012 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

USCIS Briefing on DREAMer Deferred Action


Dear Stakeholder,
On June 15, 2012, Secretary Janet Napolitano issued a memorandum to DHS components on the exercise of prosecutorial discretion with respect to certain childhood arrivals on a case-by-case basis. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement invite interested individuals to participate in a joint national teleconference to provide further details and collect additional input regarding the implementation of Secretary Napolitano’s memorandum on Thursday, July 26 from 4pm – 5pm (Eastern). Additional information on the announcement can be found here.
To Participate in the July 26 Conference Call
Please use the information below to join the session. We recommend calling in at least 20 minutes prior to the start of the teleconference.
Call-in Number: 1-800-779-9654
Passcode: DHS
This call is intended for stakeholders only. Members of the media should call (202)282-8010 with inquiries.
Kind regards,
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services


July 25, 2012 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS: Obama Administration’s Relief Process for Eligible Undocumented Youth

The National Immigration Law Center has this updated FAQ about the Obama administration's deferred action for youth program.


July 25, 2012 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Rahmmigration, Romneygration, and Federalism

Law professor Anil Kalhan has a very interesting post on Dorf on Law about Chicago Mayor (and former Obama White House Chief of Staff) Rahm Emanuel's immigrant-friendly policies in Chicago.  As Professor Kalhan points out, this development is somehwat surprising given Emanuel's positions on immigration reform when in the White House.


July 25, 2012 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Sheriff Arpaio Testifies in Racial Profiling Suit

Photo courtesy of Wikipedia

The civil rights trial in Melendres v. Arpaio continues in federal court in Arizona.  As expected, Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who heads the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office which stands accused of a pattern and practice of racial profiling and other forms of discrimination against Latinos and immigrants, testified.  His words and actions are central to the case.

JJ Hensley and the Arizona Republic have an in-depth report on Arpaio's testimony.  The article characterizes the testimony as follows:  "there are two Joe Arpaios -- the politician and the policy maker -- and there are questions as to which Arpaio is responsible for setting priorities for illegal-immigration enforcement."

Judge Murray Snow, who will decide the case without a jury, has imposed time limits of 20 hours per side for attorneys to make their cases.  "The 31/2 hours Arpaio spent on the stand Tuesday under questioning from the plaintiffs' attorney -- nearly 20 percent of their allotted time -- demonstrated the importance of Arpaio's statements to their case."

"The attorney walked Arpaio through letters he'd received from constituents and statements he has made in print and in public that paint the Sheriff's Office as an organization in which the lines between racial insensitivity and racial discrimination are constantly blurred."

Plaintiff's counsel, Stanley Young, questioned Sheriff Arpaio about, among other things, statements made about Mexican immigrants in the book Joe's Law: America's Toughest Sheriff Takes on Illegal Immigration, Drugs and Everything Else That Threatens America by Sheriff Joe Arpaio and Len Sherman.  As recounted by Lawrence Downes on the New York Times blog, Arpaio on the stand blamed his co-author for the statements about Mexican immigrants refusing to assimilate and being immigration lawbreakers.  (His co-author, by the way, disputes this, at least in part.)


Arpaio reportedly was also questioned about a statement that he made on Lou Dobb's old CNN show that being compared to the KKK was "an honor."


Stay tuned as the trial continues.

UPDATE (July 25): For a summary of the testimony on Wednesday of a U.S. citizen of Mexican ancestry who was embarrassed and humiliated by a pat down in a traffic stop by a Maricopa County officer, click here.

UPDATE (July 26):  The Arizona Republic reported that:

"Sheriff's Sgt. Brett Palmer testified in federal court Wednesday that he also forwarded racially insensitive e-mails to other deputies, including to members of the human-smuggling unit, one of which depicted a Hispanic man passed out near a bottle of tequila with the caption `Mexican Yoga.'"

"Research the 12-year employee of the Sheriff's Office did on federal immigration law ended up being cited by Arpaio during a 2009 news conference. It was later learned that the law Arpaio cited did not exist and that the research was a legal interpretation taken from an anti-illegal-immigration website."


July 25, 2012 in Books, Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Immigration Article of the Day: Undocumented Workers and Concepts of Fault: Are Courts Engaged in Legitimate Decisionmaking? by Christine N. Cimini

Undocumented Workers and Concepts of Fault: Are Courts Engaged in Legitimate Decisionmaking? by Christine N. Cimini,  Vanderbilt Law Review, Vol. 65, p. 389, 2012

Abstract: This Article examines judicial decisionmaking in labor and employment cases involving undocumented workers. Labor and employment laws, designed to protect all workers regardless of immigration status, often conflict with immigration laws designed to deter the employment of undocumented workers. In the absence of clarity as to how these differing policy priorities should interact, courts are left to resolve the conflict. While existing case law appears to lack coherence, this Article identifies a uniform judicial reliance upon “fault-based” factors. This Article offers a structure to understand this developing body of law and evaluates the legitimacy of the fault-based decisionmaking modalities utilized by courts. Though concepts of fault are not uncommon in law, when evaluating these cases courts tend to examine immigration-related fault as opposed to fault stemming from the underlying workplace claim. Using the taxonomy rooted in the Supreme Court’s 2002 Hoffman decision, courts employ two constructs in cases involving undocumented workers: past fault as it relates to unlawful immigration, continued unlawful presence in the country or fraud to obtain work; and future fault as it relates to the potential for prospective illegal acts. This Article explores whether courts’ use of these fault concepts provide legitimate bases upon which to make decisions and concludes that decisional legitimacy depends on the fault-based modality used by the court. Future “fault-based” decisionmaking effectuates legislative intent in a manner sufficient to satisfy separation of powers principles. Past “fault-based” decisions, unrooted in existing legal doctrine, constitute unchecked judicial policymaking that may violate separation of powers principles. In the middle are past fault-based decisions that are rooted in existing doctrine but are inappropriately applied in the undocumented worker context because of the insufficient nexus between the immigration wrong and the injury. The Article concludes that the attempt to effectuate immigration policy through the application of immigration fault into labor and employment cases can be an impermissible exercise of judicial authority.


July 25, 2012 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Undocumented Migrants: Victims of a Deadly Car Crash

We really need comprehensive immigration reform plus an end to Operation Gatekeeper and the militarization of the southern border. Without those efforts, individuals who are pushed north to the U.S. because of global economic policies will continue to die in their attempts to find work to feed their families.


Bloodstained pavement, gashed tree trunks and a twisted barbed-wire fence marked the end of a desperate journey.

On Sunday night, 22 Central Americans and their Mexican-born driver piled into a white Ford F-250 for what would be the last stage on their trip north. They crammed themselves into the truck's cab and lay down in its bed — one atop another — as the vehicle cruised along U.S. 59 between Beeville and Goliad.

By Monday, more than half were dead. Most died at the scene, and the others died at hospitals to which they'd been rushed after the overloaded truck careened off the road and slammed into a large, twin-trunked oak tree.

“It's certainly disturbing when you walk up and see the yellow and blue blankets that you know are covering victims, and realize that there are still five or six bodies in the vehicle because it's so badly damaged that they can't get them out,” Goliad County Judge David Bowman said.

It was the county's deadliest incident in recent memory, said Bowman, who performed the gruesome task of pronouncing 11 people dead at the scene. Three more died at hospitals Sunday and Monday. Among the dead was the driver.

Ten men and three women, two of them juveniles, all believed to be in the country illegally, traveled thousands of miles from Central America to have their lives end on this rural stretch of highway. Nine more were in hospitals across the state Monday evening, including five in San Antonio. According to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, they came from Guatemala and Honduras. Officials said they were still working to identify the victims. Read more...


July 24, 2012 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Immigration Article of the Day: Copy-Paste Precedent by Brian Soucek

Copy-Paste Precedent by Brian Soucek

Abstract: The federal appellate courts now decide eighty-five percent of their cases through unpublished, nonprecedential opinions. These are meant to resolve disputes squarely governed by existing precedent; they are not supposed to make law. Scholars have paid little attention, however, to the process by which unpublished opinions are prepared — or to ways in which this process allows some unpublished opinions to become de facto precedent. This essay identifies one such way. “Copy-paste precedent” arises when the text of an unpublished opinion gets repeatedly copied and pasted by staff attorneys drafting subsequent opinions on the same topic. Whereas ordinary precedent is meant to be reasoned and published, then cited and quoted, “copy-paste precedent” gets followed without being either cited or explicitly quoted, thereby gaining the influence of precedent without real precedent’s authority — or scrutiny. The obscurity of copy-paste precedent makes it, paradoxically, harder to correct or overturn than regular binding precedent and strips it of the rule of law, legitimacy, notice, and reliance values standardly invoked to support precedent's use.

Drawing an example from the Second Circuit's largely unpublished case law on the meaning of “social visibility” in asylum law — the subject of a deepening circuit split and a recent en banc hearing in the Ninth Circuit — this essay shows that copy-paste precedent can prove even more influential than a circuit's precedential statements on the same subject. This essay calls attention to a set of decisions in which the law that gets copied and pasted is substantively mistaken. Its broader goal, however, is to show why copy-paste precedent is itself a mistaken way for courts to make law.


July 24, 2012 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)