Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Dan Kowalski (Bender's Immigration Bulletin) Comments on the Barack Obama Interview: ""Obama on Immigration: Just OK"

Dan Kowalski, Editor-in-Chief Bender's Immigration Bulletin (LexisNexis), offers these insights on the interview with Barack Obama that was posted here yesterday.  If you would like to publish a commentary on the interview, please send it our way:

To be honest, when this "exclusive interview" was announced, I was expecting a video (or at least an audio podcast) of a live give-and-take between skeptical reporters or topic experts asking tough questions and putting the candidate on the spot with little, if any, opportunity for reflection. So I was a bit disappointed to find, instead, a canned written product, giving us nothing we hadn't heard before. I'm sure the Senator approved the final product, but I'm also sure 99% of it was written for him by a staffer. I hope this format will be scrapped when other candidates are "interviewed."

Beyond the platitudes, the nugget that struck me hardest was the Senator's rationale for voting for the Secure Fence Act. He says he voted for it even though it sends two strong messages with which he disagrees - that Mexico is "not our friend" and that an enforcement-only approach can work - because "restoring order in the border region is necessary to winning the American people's support for full reform." That's disingenuous (a word Obama loves) at best, because he knows that no fence, long or short, will restore "order" on the borders. Moreover, it's a candidate's (and a President's) job to lead and persuade, not hide behind "safe" votes. And as I've argued before, trying to "secure the borders" first is putting things backwards. Obama tries to soften the blow by saying he'll only support more border fencing "where it can help discourage illegal entry and dangerous crossings over desert terrain [Where else would they put it?] ...[and only] in coordination and cooperation with local communities." Reaction from border communities to today's release of the Border Patrol's fencing plans should make it abundantly clear that the border fence is nothing more than a pork-barrel boondoggle of the highest order; Obama should suck it up and admit his vote was wrong.

Obama (and all your interviewees) should be pinned down on numbers and categories and definitions: How many (more) green cards do we need? How many (more) non-immigrant visas? How should we re-write the visa categories, grounds of exclusion and removal, detention rules, judicial review rules and hardship waivers to bring the statute into the 21st century. It could get tedious, and long, but as Justice Scalia says, "administrative law is not for sissies."

Finally, when your group interviews other candidates, I'd scrap the Elvira Arrellano question. Call me heartless, but her story leaves me cold. There are thousands of stories out there of folks who suffered much more than she did, and without breaking any laws beyond crossing without papers. They would be better examples of our broken system.

Daniel M. Kowalski

[It should go w/o saying, but those are my views alone, not necessarily those of Matthew Bender & Co., Inc., and/or LexisNexis]

September 26, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Immigrant of the Day: William Hung (Hong Kong)

Williamhung William Hung (born January 13, 1983) gained fame in 2004 as a result of his performance of Ricky Martin's hit song "She Bangs" on the third season of the television series American Idol. (Watch it here). Hung gained fame because of the novelty derived from his lack of talent. Originally from Hong Kong, Hung moved to New Jersey in 1993 and graduated from the John H. Francis Polytechnic High School in Los Angeles. He attended UC Berkeley, but after getting a record deal after his American Idol performance, Hung dropped out from UC Berkeley. He currently attends Pasadena City College.

After appearing on American Idol. Hung rapidly gained a cult following. A William Hung fan site recorded over four million hits within its first week. Hung subsequently appeared on several television programs including Entertainment Tonight, The Late Show With David Letterman, The Howard Stern Radio Show, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Dateline NBC, and CBS's The Early Show. Hung was featured in several national magazines and newspapers; he was parodied on Saturday Night Live and appeared on Celebrity Deathmatch. An online petition to get Hung back to American Idol included more than 100,000 signatures. Hung was brought back to American Idol as part of a mid-season specia in March 2004. Hung has become more famous than many American Idol contestants and he has many fans.

Hung's first single was a cover of The Village People's "YMCA."  His debut album Inspiration includes covers of Ricky Martin's "She Bangs" and "Shake Your Bon Bon" and Elton John's "Rocket Man." The album has sold approximately 200,000 copies and peaked in the top 50 of the U.S. Billboard Top 200 Albums Chart. Several of Hung's songs reached the top 10 on Apple's iTunes charts, and the album reached #3 on's sales rankings. Hung released a Christmas album, Hung for the Holidays, in 2004 and Miracle: Happy Summer from William Hung in 2005.


September 26, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Exclusive Interview With Senator Barack Obama

160pxobamabarackWe are very pleased to post an exclusive interview with Senator Barack Obama (D-Ill), one of the candidates vying for the Democratic Presidential nomination. We prepared a list of questions for Senator Obama on a range of difficult immigration issues, including immigration reform, undocumented immigration, family immigration, local (anti-)immigration ordinances, the U.S. government's treatment of Elvira Arrellano, integration of immigrants into U.S. society, the deaths along the U.S./Mexico border, and his vote in favor of the Secure Fence Act. Readers will find that Senator Obama's responses made for an interesting dialogue!  For Senator Obama's official position statement on "Immigration and the Border," click here.

We have been in contact with the campaigns of several other 2008 Presidential candidates.  We hope that other candidates will be willing to answer the same questions that we posed to Senator Obama.

The Candidate: Barack Obama is the junior U.S. Senator from Illinois and the only African American currently serving in the U.S. Senate. Born to a Kenyan father and a white American mother, Senator Obama lived much of his childhood in Hawaii; he spent four of his pre-teen years in Indonesia.  He is a graduate of Columbia University and Harvard Law School. At Harvard, Senator Obama was the first African American President of the Harvard Law Review, one of the leading law reviews in the United States.

Before running for office, Senator Obama worked as a community organizer and civil rights lawyer. He served in the Illinois Senate from 1997 to 2004, launching his campaign for U.S. Senate in 2003.   He delivered a much-heralded keynote address at the 2004 Democratic Convention (click here for a video of the first part of that speech). Obama went on to win election to the U.S. Senate in November 2004, garnering 70% of the vote. He announced his candidacy for President in February 2007.

Senator Obama has authored two books: a memoir entitled Dreams from My Father, and The Audacity of Hope, a commentary on U.S. politics.

For his official campaign bio, see here. The official Obama '08 — website can be found here. His U.S. Senate office is here.

The Interview: Here (Download senator_obama_interview.pdf) are the questions that we posed to Senator Obama about immigration and his responses.  The questions are in bold type and Senator Obama's responses are in regular type.

We trust that you will find the dialogue of interest.

Jennifer Chacón, Bill Hing, and Kevin Johnson

Disclaimer: All three of us have served as members of an Immigration Policy Group for the Obama campaign. We drafted the questions as a group and did not play any role in formulating the responses.

September 25, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (17) | TrackBack (1)

Monday, September 24, 2007

SBA Finds Fault with DHS No-Match Rule

Kent Hoover of Bizjournals writes:

Business groups have an ally inside the federal government in their challenge to a regulation that outlines what an employer should do when they are notified that an employee's Social Security number doesn't match government records.

Tom Sullivan, the Small Business Administration's chief counsel for advocacy, agrees the Department of Homeland Security violated the Regulatory Flexibility Act by failing to analyze the "no-match" rule's impact on small businesses.

Under the rule, employers must fire a worker within 90 days of receiving a no-match letter if they or the employee can't resolve the Social Security number discrepancy. Otherwise, they could be prosecuted for knowingly employing an illegal alien.

The rule was scheduled to go into effect Sept. 14. The Social Security Administration and DHS planned to send letters to 140,000 businesses that employ 8 million workers with Social Security numbers that don't match government records. A federal judge, however, delayed the regulation pending an Oct. 1 hearing on a lawsuit filed by the AFL-CIO, which contends the rule could lead to workers unfairly losing their jobs.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce and other business groups joined this lawsuit, contending the rule should be postponed until DHS analyzes the rule's impact on small businesses and consider other, less burdensome alternatives. DHS contended this analysis isn't necessary because the rule wouldn't have a significant economic impact on a large number of small businesses.

Business groups, however, contend the rule would cost small businesses at least $100 million a year because they would have to spend a lot of time checking their records and contacting the Social Security Administration. Plus, they would lose valuable employees, not because they are illegal workers, but because of clerical errors or name changes, the lawsuit contends.

The lawsuit also contends DHS exceeded its statutory authority and arbitrarily presumed a mismatched Social Security number indicates a worker isn't authorized to work.

DHS spokeswoman Laura Keehner said business groups "are making the situation worse for the constituency they believe they are protecting" by fighting the no-match regulation.

"The vast majority of employers want to do the right thing," she said. "They know that compliance with the law is ultimately better for their bottom line. The no-match regulation will make it easier for employers to do just that."  Click here for full story.


September 24, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (1)

ImmigrationProf Exclusive! Interview With Senator Barack Obama

160pxobamabarack We are pleased to announce that at 8 A.M. PST on Tuesday morning, the ImmigrationProf blog will post an exclusive interview with Senator Barack Obama (D-Ill), one of the candidates vying for the Democratic Presidential nomination. We prepared a list of questions for Senator Obama on a range of difficult immigration issues, including immigration reform, undocumented immigration, family immigration, deportation and immigration raids, local (anti-)immigration ordinances, integration of immigrants into U.S. society, the deaths along the U.S./Mexico border, and his vote in favor of the Secure Fence Act. Readers will see that Senator Obama's responses made for a very interesting dialogue!

We are actively seeking other 2008 Presidential candidates to answer the same immigration questions that we posed to Senator Obama.

Please make sure and check out the exclusive Barack Obama interview on Tuesday morning!

Jennifer Chacón, Bill Hing, and Kevin Johnson

September 24, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Gregory Rodriguez on the Republican's Scorched Earth (Immigration) Positions

I do not always agree with Gregory Rodriguez but his latest column, which emphasizes similar themes that Michael Gerson's op/ed in the Washington Post did last week, is worth considering.  Rodriguez begins:

"Republicans these days insist that their anti-immigration stance has nothing to do with race or ethnicity. It's the left, they say, that injects identity politics into everything. I caught the well-coiffed, permanently snarling ideologue Michelle Malkin making that exact point on television a few weeks back. "Let me drive this through the thick skulls of the open-border zealots at the New York Times and elsewhere," she barked. "This [illegal immigration] crisis has nothing to do with race. It's about peaceful citizens of all colors and creeds demanding that their government do everything possible to secure the blessings of liberty." And then, as if she couldn't control herself, Malkin punctuated her diatribe with a sarcastic bit of Spanish: "Comprende?"

OK, so immigration isn't about Latinos. I guess that follows because as far as the Republicans are concerned, nothing is about Latinos."


September 24, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Immigrant of the Day: Neil Young (Canada)

Neilyoung Neil Percival Young (born November 12, 1945, Toronto, Ontario) is a musician.  Young has experimented widely with differing music styles, including swing, jazz, rockabilly, blues, and electronica throughout his career but his best known work usually falls into either of two distinct styles: folk-esque acoustic rock (as heard in songs such as "Heart of Gold", "Harvest Moon" and "Old Man") and electric-charged hard rock (in songs like "Cinnamon Girl", "Rockin' in the Free World" and "Hey Hey, My My (Into the Black)"). In more recent years, Young has started to adopt elements from newer styles of music, such as industrial, alternative country and grunge, the latter of which was profoundly influenced by his own style of playing.

Besides his solo career, Young is best known for his involvement is a number of famous groups including Buffalo Springfield, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, and Crazy Horse.

Young is an outspoken advocate for environmental issues and small farmers, having co-founded the benefit concert Farm Aid, and in 1986 helped found The Bridge School, and its annual supporting Bridge School Benefit concerts.

Young remains a Canadian citizen and has not sought to become a U.S. citizen.  He has has lived in the United States for many years and has stated, about U.S. elections, that he has "got just as much right to vote in them as anybody else."

Young was inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame in 1982. He has been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame twice: first in 1995 for his solo work, and again in 1997 as a member of Buffalo Springfield.

For a full biography, click here.

Here are videos of two of my favorite Neil Young songs -- Like A Hurricane and Hey Hey, My My.


September 24, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

New Immigration Articles and Book Review

Commentary: Blurred Boundaries in Immigration. Introduction by Joel C. Norwood, Commentary Editor; articles by Jennifer M. Chacon, Bill Ong Hing and Daniel Kanstroom. 39 Conn. L. Rev. 1825-1922 (2007).

McCarty, Justin A. Note. The volunteer border patrol: the inevitable disaster of the Minuteman Project. 92 Iowa L. Rev. 1459-1492 (2007).

Miller, Allyson A. Note. Lock them up and throw away the key: the Comprehensive Enforcement and Immigration Reform Act and the indefinite detention of inadmissible aliens. 52 Wayne L. Rev. 1503-1518 (2006).

Sharron, Jessica. Comment. Passing the DREAM Act: opportunities for undocumented Americans. 47 Santa Clara L. Rev. 599-643 (2007).

Stuart, Rebecca. Comment. A work of heart: a proposal for a revision of the Visual Artists Rights Act of 1990 to bring the United States closer to international standards. 47 Santa Clara L. Rev. 645-684 (2007).

Taylor, Paige. Immigration law. 39 Tex. Tech L. Rev. 829-842 (2007).

232pp.   Reviewed by John S.W. Park, Department of Asian American Studies,
University of California at Santa Barbara.


September 24, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Enforcing Arizona's Employer Sanctions Law

Mike Sunnucks of the Business Journal of Phoenix reports:

Maricopa County Attorney Andrew Thomas and Sheriff Joe Arpaio are teaming to enforce a new state law that will punish employers that hire illegal immigrants.

The state employer sanctions law will revoke the business licenses of companies caught knowingly hiring illegal immigrants more than once.

Business interests and Hispanic groups are challenging the state law in court, saying such matters are a federal concern and violate due-process rules.

Arpaio and Thomas said Thursday their offices will work together to investigate complaints regarding businesses hiring illegal immigrants. They have taken an aggressive approach to enforcing immigration laws, including prosecuting illegal immigrants under human smuggling statutes for "smuggling themselves."

Arpaio has set up a hotline for the public to report smugglers, illegal immigrants and businesses that hire undocumented workers.

Business and Hispanic critics of the sanctions law and Arpaio hotline say those efforts discriminate against Hispanics and violate due-process and civil rights laws. Click here for the whole story.


September 23, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

LaVerne to Create a New Immigration Law Clinic

The University of La Verne College of Law also announced it will open an immigration clinic, the Center for Justice & Immigration, in January 2008. Under the direction of immigration law Pofessor Diane Uchimiya from the College of Law, the clinic will students the opportunity to work on asylum cases.

Congrats to LaVerne for creating this much-needed immigration clinic in Southern California!  UCLA and USC have immigration clinics but the need for pro bono representation greatly exceeds the supply.


September 23, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

ImmigrationProf Exclusive! Interview With Senator Barack Obama

160pxobamabarack We are pleased to announce that at 8 A.M. PST on Tuesday morning, the ImmigrationProf blog will post an exclusive interview with Senator Barack Obama (D-Ill), one of the candidates vying for the Democratic Presidential nomination. We prepared a list of questions for Senator Obama on a range of difficult immigration issues, including immigration reform, undocumented immigration, family immigration, deportation and immigration raids, local (anti-)immigration ordinances, integration of immigrants into U.S. society, the deaths along the U.S./Mexico border, and his vote in favor of the Secure Fence Act.  Readers will see that Senator Obama's responses made for a very interesting dialogue!

We are actively seeking other 2008 Presidential candidates to answer the same immigration questions that we posed to Senator Obama.

Please make sure and check out the exclusive Barack Obama interview on Tuesday morning!

Jennifer Chacón, Bill Hing, and Kevin Johnson

September 23, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

Saturday, September 22, 2007

France Proposes DNA Testing for Immigrants

Lisa Bryant of Voice of America writes:

France is hardly a fortress, but it is getting harder to enter the country as a legal immigrant - and easier for illegal aliens to be deported. The bill adopted by the National Assembly would require French language tests for visa candidates and parents seeking to join family members to sign immigration contracts. It would also authorize voluntary genetic tests to prove family ties. If passed by both houses, it would be the third French law in five years tightening immigration policy.
The legislation - particularly the controversial DNA provision - has sparked widespread opposition. Leftist politicians, human rights groups, the Vatican and even French police and government ministers have voiced concerns. Click here for the full story.

September 22, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

RIP: David Carliner, Lawyer and Immigration Advocate

David Carliner, an influential lawyer, died of a heart attack at age 89 on Wednesday in Washington. Carliner handled some important immigration cases. One was the famous case of Carlos Marcello, the New Orleans racketeer whom the federal government after years of hearings and appeals finally deported in 1961. Another client, Staughton Lynd, was a Yale professor whose passport was canceled after he made a trip to North Vietnam. Carliner's representation of a Chinese immigrant, Hay Say Naim, in a case involving Virginia’s anti-miscegenation law drew national attention in the early 1950s. In 1979 and 1980, Mr. Carliner fought legal battles for Iranian students studying in the United States who were trapped between the new fundamentalist government in their own country and the American authorities. In the 1980s, he separately represented a member of a death squad in El Salvador and a Nicaraguan immigrant who feared being drafted by the Sandinista government if forced to return to his own country. When Garry Davis returned from 30 years of wanderings using a world passport he had issued himself, Mr. Carliner won him the right to live in the United States.

According to the N.Y. Times, "Mr. Carliner’s battles were part of an overall effort to change and liberalize immigration policy. He fought the Reagan administration’s efforts to restrict the power of federal courts in immigration and asylum cases and in the 1990s campaigned against Congressional efforts to tighten immigration severely. In 1977, he published “Rights of Aliens,” which became a popular handbook on changes in immigration policy. In 1990, he and several colleagues came out with “The Rights of Aliens and Refugees,” (Southern Illinois University Press)."


September 22, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Tell Me that It Ain't So Simi Valley! Charging A Church $40K for Police Action to Ensure Public Safety?

We reported earlier this week about a clash of protesters at a Simi Valley, California church.  Well, there is some troubling news from Simi Valley.  According to the L.A. Times, city officials are standing by a City Council decision to charge a church nearly $40,000 to cover the costs for law enforcement officers who monitored the immigration protest. The United Church of Christ has sheltered a undocumented immigrant. City Manager Mike Sedell said Sunday's rally at the church on Royal Avenue by dozens of anti-illegal immigration activists was met by immigrant rights activists during a loud but peaceful demonstration. Although only about 15 police officers were at the church, Sedell said twice as many were nearby in case violence broke out. Ventura County sheriff's deputies were also on standby, he said.


September 22, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (7) | TrackBack (0)

ADC Condemns Remarks by Peter King

ADC Press Release:

Washington, DC | September 20, 2007 | | The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) strongly condemns recent racist and Islamphobic remarks from Rep. Peter King (R-NY) who is the ranking Republican on the House Homeland Security Committee.

In an interview with The Politico, Rep. King said, "Unfortunately, we have too many mosques in this country. There are too many people who are sympathetic to radical Islam. We should be looking at them more carefully. We should be finding out how we can infiltrate. […] King added, "I think there's been a lack of full cooperation from too many people in the Muslim community. And it's a real threat here in this country." To watch the King interview see:;

Rep. King has a history of racism and bigotry toward Arab and Muslim Americans. In the past, he has said, Muslims are "an enemy living amongst us." He has also called for ethnic and racial profiling of Arabs and Muslims. It should be noted that Rep. King also serves as a top advisor to presidential hopeful Rudy Guiliani alongside leading Islamophobe Daniel Pipes. Pipes also serves on the board of coalition which tried to derail the opening of the Khalil Gibran International Academy in Brooklyn, New York. For more information see:

ADC President Hon. Mary Rose Oakar said, "ADC is deeply troubled by Rep. King's intolerance and bigotry and we call on him to repudiate and apologize for his latest comments. To say that there are too many mosques in the US is unacceptable, just as unacceptable as it would be to say there are too many churches or synagogues; ADC condemns these types of comments."

Hon. Oakar added, "We appreciate the efforts of the Democratic National Committee who condemned King's comments saying 'This type of bigoted language has no place in public discourse, especially from the Republican's top lawmaker on the House Homeland Security Committee.'"

NOTE TO EDITORS: The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC), which is non sectarian and non partisan, is the largest Arab-American civil rights organization in the United States. It was founded in 1980, by former Senator James Abourezk to combat racial stereotyping and to protect the civil rights of people of Arab descent in the United States. ADC has 38 chapters nationwide, including chapters in every major city in the country, and members in all 50 states.

American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee |
1732 Wisconsin Ave., NW | Washington, DC | 20007
Tel: 202-244-2990 | Fax: 202-244-7968 | E-mail:


September 22, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

New SSRN Articles

"Are Muslim Immigrants Different in Terms of Cultural Integration?" IZA Discussion Paper No. 3006 ALBERTO BISIN New York University - Department of Economics Co-Author: ELEONORA PATACCHINI University of Southampton - Division of Economics, University of Rome I - Faculty of Statistics Co-Author: THIERRY VERDIER Ecole Nationale des Ponts et Chaussées (ENPC) - Paris-Jourdan Sciences Economique, Delta - Ecole Normale Superieure (ENS), Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR) YVES ZENOU Research Institute of Industrial Economics (IUI), Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA), Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR) Full Text:

"Colloquium on Religion and Immigration: Strangers No Longer - Immigration Law and Policy in the Light of Religious Values" University of Detroit Mercy Law Review, Vol. 83, No. 829, 2006 Fordham Law Legal Studies Research Paper No. 1013381 AMELIA J. UELMEN Fordham University School of Law Full Text:

"Tolerance in an Age of Terror" Harvard Public Law Working Paper No. 07-11 Southern California Interdisciplinary Law Journal, Vol. 16, No. 3, 2007 Contact: MARTHA MINOW Harvard Law School Full Text:

"The Evolution of Citizenship: Economic and Institutional Determinants" CEPR Discussion Paper No. 6066 Contact: GRAZIELLA BERTOCCHI Università degli studi di Modena e Reggio Emilia - Dipartimento di Economia Politica, Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR), Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) Co-Author: CHIARA STROZZI Università degli studi di Modena e Reggio Emilia - Dipartimento di Economia Politica Abstract:

"Ambiguous Knowledge: Seeking Clarity in the Effort to Define and Assess Trafficking and the Sexual Exploitation of Children" DAVID E. GUINN Administrative Judicial Institute Full Text:


September 22, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Stock on the DREAM Act and Political Hypocrisy

Professor Margaret Stock is a Lieutenant Colonel in the Military Police Corps, U.S. Army Reserve; and an Associate Professor in the Department of Social Sciences at the U.S. Military Academy, West Point, New York.  A graduate of Harvard Law School, Professor Stock, who is a member of the Federalist Sopciety (and recently spoke at UC Davis about immigrants in the military), is a thoughtful immigration expert.  Stock recently wrote on the ImmProf listserve about some of the latest political shenanigans in Congress: 

"It's been interesting today to watch the various Congressional Representatives and Senators railing against Senator Durbin's tactic of trying to attach the DREAM Act to a DOD authorization bill. Among the ones who have been saying that this tactic is inherently wrong are Tom Tancredo, John Cornyn, and others who said nothing when the same tactic was used by R. James Sensenbrenner and others to pass anti-immigration legislation. Recall that REAL ID was passed as part of the Emergency Supplemental DOD appropriations bill. What did REAL ID have to do with a DOD emergency appropriations bill? Not much. If anyone can remember which other anti-immigration legislation in the past has been stuck onto DOD appropriations or authorization bills, let me know--I'm making a list."


September 22, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, September 21, 2007

New York Does the Right Thing: All Drivers to be Eligible for Licenses

New York Governor Eliot Spitzer and Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) Commissioner David Swarts today announced an administrative policy change that will give all New Yorkers the opportunity to apply for state driver licenses without regard to immigration status. Tied to the policy change, the Governor and Commissioner also announced plans to implement a new regime of anti-fraud measures to increase the security of the licensing system as a new population of New Yorkers comes into the system. The DMV estimates that tens of thousands of undocumented, unlicensed and uninsured drivers are currently on New York’s roads, contributing to increased accidents and hit-and-runs as well as higher auto insurance rates. In addition, bringing more New Yorkers into the system will ensure a greater number of people have a license record that, if necessary, can be used to enhance law enforcement efforts.

For the press release, click here.

UPDATE:  For a discussion of the varied reactions to the change in policy, including support from some conservatives, click here.


September 21, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (6) | TrackBack (0)

David Bacon: Time For A More Radical Immigrant-Rights Movement

David Bacon writes "Everywhere in this country immigrant communities are growing, defying the raids intended to terrorize them - organizing and speaking out. This movement is a powerful response to Congress' inability to pass a pro-immigrant reform bill."


September 21, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (6) | TrackBack (0)

Mapping the New Nativism

The Building Democracy Initiative has prepared an interactive map that charts 332 state and local anti-immigrant groups.  About one-third of the groups, which are spead out across the United States but are most numerous in states with significant immigrant populations, are affiliated with the Minutemen.


September 21, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)