If there's a controversial new anti-immigration law that's captured national attention, chances are that it has Kris Kobach's imprimatur. A telegenic law professor with flawless academic credentials—Harvard undergrad, Yale Law School—Kobach helped Arizona lawmakers craft the infamous immigration law that passed in the spring of 2010. He's coached legislators across the country in their efforts to pass dozens of similar measures, ranging from Alabama, Georgia, and Missouri to the small town of Fremont, Nebraska, pop. 26,000. His record has helped propel him into elected office, becoming Kansas' secretary of state just six months after the passage of Arizona's SB 1070.
Kobach routinely denies that he's the progenitor of the anti-immigration laws he's drafted or defended. Rather, he insists he simply assists officials already committed to tougher enforcement policies. "I did not generate the motivation to pass the law...I am merely the attorney who comes in, refines, and drafts their statutes," he says.
But advocates on both sides of the immigration debate agree that Kobach's influence has been far-reaching. Rosemary Jenks of NumbersUSA, an anti-immigration group, calls Kobach "instrumental in helping states and localities deal with the federal government's authority." Vivek Malhotra, a lawyer who worked for the American Civil Liberties Union when it tussled with Kobach in court, says, "What Kris Kobach has done as a lawyer is really gone out to localities around the country and really used them as experimental laboratories for pushing questionable legal theories about how far states and local governments can go."Read more...
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Green Card Stories
Introduction by Laura Danielson and Stephen Yale-Loehr Stories by Saundra Amrhein Photogrpahs by Ariana Lindquist
The American Immigration Council is proud to support the publication of Green Card Stories. Green Card Stories is an incredible tribute to the diverse backgrounds that make up our immigrant population in America today. The American Immigration Council’s mission is to “strengthen America by honoring our immigrant history by shaping how Americans think about and act towards immigration now and in the future” and we can’t think of a better way to further our mission than through this beautiful and touching book.
Not only can you order books for yourself, your office, family members, clients, etc. you can also order a book to donate to your local school, library or community center or you can donate a book to one of the Council’s designated “hot spots” where education on immigration is needed most. Could your Member of Congress use a thank you or a gentle reminder of who our immigrant population is? Donate a copy of Green Card Stories to a Congressional office. All donated books will be delivered free of charge with a note indicating your generous gift. To order your copy, fill out an order form. Read more...
Wendy Sefsaf of the IPC was quoted in an LA Times article about L.A. County Sheriff Baca and California's Trust Act:
"This is one more fight between the federal government and local government because we continue to not solve the greater problem," said Wendy Sefsaf, communications director for the Immigration Policy Center. Read more...
Barbara Murik Chesman was born in the Schlachtenzee Displaced Persons Camp in Berlin, Germany after World War II. Her parents, Abraham and Lisa Murik (nee Davidowicz) both survived the horrors of the Holocaust and emigrated from Germany to the United States in March of 1949.
The family settled here in Washington, DC where Mrs. Chesman attended Wheatley Elementary School, the Hebrew Academy of Washington, and Western High School (now Duke Ellington School for the Performing Arts). She later attended the University of Maryland where she earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Government and Politics in May of 1968.
While at college, Mrs. Chesman started working part-time for the Department of State in the Bureau of Consular Affairs for the Passport Office. Following graduation, Mrs. Chesman became a full time employee of the Department of State in August of 1968 in the Office of Passport Services. She met her future husband Bernard Chesman in May of 1971 and they were married June 4, 1972 at Beth Sholom Synagogue in Washington, DC. Immediately following their marriage, they moved to Atlanta Georgia for 7 months, but decided to return to Washington in January 1973 where Mrs. Chesman resumed her career in the Passport Office.
Mrs. Chesman has held many positions in almost every part of the Office of Passport Services but her most notable achievement came in June of 1994, when the Special Issuance Agency (the passport agency which handles all passports for the Federal government) was made a separate entity and she was named Director. Currently, Mrs. Chesman serves in that position today.Read more...
The AIC's Executive Director, Ben Johnson, was quoted in an article in the New York Times. The article, titled "Veteran Senator Emerges as Player on Immigration Overhaul," focuses on Senator Orrin Hatch's role in the Senate Judiciary Committee's mark-up of the immigration bill.
"Though he backed away from immigration reform when he faced a tough primary challenge in 2012, many immigration advocates believe he is now ready to come around to their side.
“I think there is the political space now for Senator Hatch to talk about these issues that he has a track record of being supportive of,” said Ben Johnson, the executive director of the American Immigration Council."
Royce Bernstein Murray, Esq. worked for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the former Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) for eight years: as Associate Counsel in the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Office of the Chief Counsel, Refugee and Asylum Law Division from 2003‐2008, and as a Presidential Management Fellow/Asylum Officer in the INS Office of International Affairs from 2000‐2002. At present, Ms. Murray is an adjunct professor of immigration law at the University of the District of Columbia David A. Clarke School of Law and an independent refugee and immigration law consultant. She is a graduate of the Georgetown University Law Center and holds a B.A. with distinction in political science from the University of Michigan.