The Senate Judiciary Committee's Subcommittee on Immigration, Border Security and Citizenship will hold a hearing "Comprehensive Immigration Reform in 2009: Can We Do It and How?" to examine common sense solutions to the immigration system on Thursday, April 30. The following is a statement from Benjamin Johnson, Executive Director of the American Immigration Law Foundation in Washington, DC.
June 2008 marks the two-year anniversary and the end of Operation Jump Start, a joint program by the Border Patrol and Department of Defense. Yet, the persistence of undocumented immigration indicates that Operation Jump Start is anything but a success. Instead, it has been a costly and ineffective approach to border control that was incorporated into a larger, self-defeating strategy of enforcement-without-reform.
Washington D.C. - In the State of the Union Address this evening President Obama made clear his ongoing commitment to immigration reform noting "we should continue the work of fixing our broken immigration system - to secure our borders, enforce our laws, and ensure that everyone who plays by the rules can contribute to our economy and enrich our nation." Some may continue to argue that immigration reform is too politically risky to move on this year and that we should focus instead on rebuilding our economy. However, comprehensive immigration reform is compatible with economic reform as it would generate needed economic growth, create jobs and increase tax contributions by ensuring that everyone working in the United States is doing so legally. In fact, immigration reform would allow us to take full advantage of the opportunities for economic growth that immigrants bring.
Immigration Yields Tremendous Economic Benefits to AmericaRead more...
Earlier this week, the American Immigration Council's Legal Action Center (LAC), the American Immigration Lawyers Association, and the Pennsylvania Immigration Resource Center filed an amicus brief with the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) urging the government to protect the rights of immigrants whose mental disabilities prevent them from participating meaningfully in their own removal hearings. "This is particularly disturbing given that these immigrants are not granted court-appointed counsel in removal proceedings" said Melissa Crow, Director of the Legal Action Center.
AILA and AIC submitted a letter to DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano expressing concerns and offering assistance and perspective with respect to implementing a well-balanced policy on the exercise of prosecutorial discretion.