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Democrats Reach Out to Hispanics on Immigration Bill

Published on Thu, Sep 16, 2010

Latinos are now one-quarter of Nevada’s population and nearly 12 percent of voters, according to the Immigration Policy Center, a research group in Washington. Their strong turnout in 2008 swung the state for Mr. Obama. While Ms. Angle has not focused on Latinos, Senator Reid has been running Spanish-language ads and attending rallies, declaring his commitment to the immigration overhaul.

Published in the New York Times

INA § 242(a)(2)(D) not a bar to district court jurisdiction

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Federal District Court Jurisdiction over Legal and Constitutional Questions

The Legal Action Center (LAC) is urging a narrow and strict interpretation of the statutory bars to review of discretionary issues in cases where discretionary relief may have been sought, but the cases themselves present legal or constitutional issues. This situation arises when a person seeks district court review of USCIS’s denial of an application for adjustment of status on non-discretionary grounds. This issue has become increasingly important as more noncitizens challenge USCIS denials of applications in district court. It is an issue that remains unresolved in the majority of circuits. We argue that: (1) the bar in INA § 242(a)(2)(B)(i) is inapplicable to a court’s review of non-discretionary statutory eligibility for benefits; and (2) that INA § 242(a)(2)(D) expands the court of appeals’ jurisdiction and in no way limits district court jurisdiction over legal and constitutional questions.

The LAC presented these arguments to the court of appeals in an amicus curiae brief in support of rehearing and rehearing en banc in Lee v. USCIS, 592 F.3d 612 (4th Cir. 2010). We also received a decision in another case in which we had filed an amicus curiae brief. Although the Third Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the district court’s finding that the plaintiff was seeking review of a discretionary determination that is barred under INA § 242(a)(2)(B), the court agreed with the LAC that the district court would retain jurisdiction over nondiscretionary issues and that it had wrongly interpreted INA § 242(a)(2)(D) as restricting the court’s jurisdiction over legal and constitutional questions.

LAC amicus briefs on 242(a)(2)(D):Read more...

State Representative Launches ‘Anchor Baby’ Task Force

Published on Tue, Oct 19, 2010

Wendy Sefsaf, communications director for the American Immigration Council, said there is no proof illegal immigrants come here to have children, only anecdotal stories in articles and newspapers.

“There’s no absolute proof someone would come here and have a baby,” said Ms. Sefsaf. “That baby couldn’t do anything for you until it’s 21 years old, and then sponsor you for permanent residence which could take 10 to 20 years. It’s an imagined problem.”

Ms. Sefsaf also questioned Mr. Metcalfe’s claim the 14th Amendment is being “misapplied” because the original debates around the amendment talked about both rights for African-Americans and for Chinese immigrants.

“It was very purposely passed and set up to take into account both African-Americans and immigrants,” she said. “It’s being applied exactly as it was intended.”

She said illegal immigrants primarily come to the United States for economic reasons, not to have children here.

“It’s almost invariably for economic reasons. We do have a broken immigration system, and we do need to address it comprehensively and fix it, but these patchwork solutions don’t get us anywhere near where we need to be to fix the system,” said Ms. Sefsaf.

Published in the Pennsylvania Independent

Litigation Clearinghouse Newsletter Vol. 4, No. 8

This issue covers a court order requiring DHS to respond to a detention standards petition, BIA and Ninth Circuit decisions on continuances, a class action challenging prolonged detention, retroactive application of a change in law, and litigation resources on the Supreme Court's decision in Nijhawan.

Published On: Friday, July 10, 2009 | Download File

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More states push for stricter immigration laws

Published on Tue, Jan 18, 2011

In explaining these somewhat contradictory findings, Wendy Sefsaf, the communications director of the American Immigration Council, said, “We have to dig beneath the surface. Americans want solutions, even if sometimes they are bad ones or not really solutions at all.”

Published in the Homeland Security Newswire

Litigation Clearinghouse Newsletter Vol. 2, No. 3

This issue covers a natz delay class action, arriving alien adjustments, the Fourth Circuit's reversal in Matter of Perez Vargas (204(j) case), the asylum one year filing deadline, and the National Children's Center's resources.

Published On: Tuesday, February 27, 2007 | Download File

Barbour May Follow in Brewer's Footsteps on Controversial Immigration Policy

Published on Tue, Mar 15, 2011

Mississippi governor and potential Republican presidential contender Haley Barbour addressed a Chamber of Commerce audience in Chicago Monday, where he spent most of his time on criticizing President Obama's handling of the economy.

He will likely continue to do the same in Iowa and California this week as he continues to test the presidential waters. But back in Mississippi, a quieter fight over a pending immigration bill is brewing, one which would undoubtedly play role in the upcoming battle for the GOP nomination.

Modeled closely after the contentious law enacted by Arizona governor Jan Brewer last April, the proposed measure in Mississippi would allow law enforcement officers to ask people they suspect of being illegal immigrants for proof that they are in the country legally. Failure to produce proper documentation could result in jail time or deportation.

There are slight variations in both chambers' versions of the bill. The state Senate measure would have allowed people to sue cities, counties, and law enforcement officials who failed to comply with the new rules. The House stripped that language, and added a provision to allow for lawsuits and fines for employers of illegal immigrants.

Reaction to the proposed legislation at the local level has largely fallen along predictable partisan lines. The Mississippi Immigrants Rights Alliance has called it unethical and racist. And a group of state bishops sent an open letter to Gov. Barbour, arguing that "From a public policy standpoint, this bill does not make good law or good sense."Read more...

Published in the PBS Newshour