Washington D.C. – The American Immigration Council applauds the “Gang of Eight” Senators who have introduced the "Border Security, Economic Opportunity and Immigration Modernization Act." The Senators and their staff have been working tirelessly, for months, to create a bi-partisan solution that attempts to fix our broken immigration system. The Senate is to be commended for having the courage to lean into this difficult issue and bring forth a detailed and comprehensive proposal. In addition, labor and business groups should be acknowledged for their role in negotiating, in advance, some of the toughest sticking points to help ensure a smooth path through Congress.
In the coming days and weeks as the bill is analyzed and debated, there will be many who criticize both the policy remedies in the bill, as well as the sheer length of the legislation. It is important to keep in mind, however, that developing a comprehensive solution requires striking a delicate balance between a diverse cross section of stakeholders and impacted constituencies. Furthermore, the dysfunctional system that we have developed over the past two decades is in dire need of deep and precise reforms. While there will be fair criticisms of some of the bill’s contents it is important to keep the spirit of the debate productive and to ensure room for compromise. Read more...
Immigrants - and immigration - have provided significant fuel for America's growth and prosperity since the beginning days of our country. American values and beliefs; businesses and homes, and military and infrastructure have been shaped by the millions of immigrants who have arrived on our shores over the centuries. Unfortunately, the current national debate over immigration often has become so bitter that an important fact has been obscured: Immigrants contribute a wealth of new strengths and ideas to America.
Washington, D.C.—This week, the American Immigration Council filed an amicus curiae brief urging the Supreme Court to rule in favor of young adults who, due to long delays caused by visa backlogs, lost the opportunity to obtain their “green cards” before they turned 21. The brief was filed in collaboration with the American Immigration Lawyers Association, National Immigrant Justice Center, Asian Americans Advancing Justice, and the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund.
The case, Cuellar de Osorio v. Mayorkas, involves a provision of the Child Status Protection Act of 2002 (CSPA). The amicus brief argues that in the CSPA, Congress specifically remedied the problem of children who, due to long delays caused by visa backlogs, turned 21 and lost the opportunity to immigrate with their families before a visa became available. Specifically, the brief argues that children listed as beneficiaries on all types of visa petitions – and not simply those filed by lawful permanent residents, as the government argues – are entitled to retain the earlier filing date of their parents’ visa petitions when new visa petitions are filed for them as adults. As a result, they do not have to wait as long for new visas. The brief presents compelling case histories illustrating the hardship that these families have suffered as the result of the government’s narrow interpretation.
The amici were represented on a pro bono basis by Lori Alvino McGill and Nicole Ries Fox of Latham and Watkins, LLP. Read more about this case and the Child Status Protection Act on our website.
WASHINGTON--A new study by a leading academic researcher contends that legalizing undocumented workers through comprehensive immigration reform would yield $1.5 trillion to the U.S. Gross Domestic Product (GDP) over a 10-year period, generate billions of dollars in additional tax revenue, increase wages and consumer spending, and create hundreds of thousands of jobs.
The study, “Raising the Floor for American Workers: The Economic Benefits of Comprehensive Immigration Reform,” was conducted by Dr. Raul Hinojosa-Ojeda, associate professor at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). Dr. Hinojosa presented the findings during a telephonic press conference moderated by Angela Kelley, vice president for immigration policy and advocacy at the Center for American Progress.
Last Sunday, a crowd estimated at 200,000 by its organizers gathered on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. to rally for comprehensive immigration reform; President Obama appeared in a video at the demonstration endorsing a bipartisan plan proposed by Senators Charles Schumer (D-NY) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC).
On March 21, we joined a busload of Central New Yorkers on a trip to Washington, D.C., where tens of thousands of people rallied for comprehensive immigration reform. We returned home ready to face the usual barrage of falsehoods that poison our national discourse on immigration — myths meant to demonize immigrants and prevent reform.
But the Immigration Policy Center, a major opponent of the new law, says FAIR's data do not accurately portray SB1070's potential outcome. “They count the costs and don’t look at the benefits. We tend to look at the benefits more closely,” said Council spokeswoman Wendy Sefsaf.
“It is like having a roommate and counting how much they cost in toilet paper and incidentals without looking at the benefits of having help with the rent,” she said.
“Overall, every comprehensive study has shown that immigrants are a net benefit to states. If you add their children, they are a very great benefit.”
The Center’s cost crunching found that "if all unauthorized immigrants were removed from Arizona, the state would lose $26.4 billion in economic activity, $11.7 billion in gross state product and approximately 140,324 jobs,” -- a disaster for the Grand Canyon State.
Much has been said about Arizona’s Senate Bill 1070, allowing state law enforcement officials to stop, question, detain and report individuals based on suspicion of undocumented status. Outrage against this bill is pervasive. Some say it hearkens back to Jim Crow, others say it legalizes racial profiling.
Immigrants — both legal and illegal — are surprisingly important to Utah's economy and future, according to a new compilation of data about them.
The Immigration Policy Center, a Washington-based research group, spent a year looking at academic studies and U.S. Census Bureau data about immigrants in each state, and released fact sheets for each on Wednesday.
"Facts are sadly lacking in the immigration debate," said Mary Giovagnoli, director of the center. She said too many people "seek to manipulate information to project an image of immigrants — both those here legally and illegally — as drains on society who make no positive contributions. The facts demonstrate something entirely different."