Posted by: Floyd J Fernandez, J.D. | August 7, 2017

Sensibility and Obstinacy: August 7 , 2017

The discussion of the moment deserves a look at two contrasting articles, and a human interest story coming out of two others:  First the position statement of Acting ICE Director Thomas Homan before the Senate Judiciary Committee two days ago.  His position has always been to see after as aggressive a program of mass deportation as is practicable.  He has previously been quoted as saying that “all undocumenteds should be looking over their shoulders at him and his ICE agents, no matter how long they have lived in America.”

Second to consider is an article from Anis Shivani in ‘Salon’ magazine yesterday.  The proposal in the title of his article “Beyond Left and Right”, is as blatant an advocacy for open borders as you might find.  He rejects the very notion that national sovereignty has a right to exclude individuals from the USA.

In contrast are three poignant stories of immigrants, and those affected by immigrants, caught up in the real-world struggles and heartbreak that comes from this broken immigration system.

The first is the story of what I would call “shocking the conscience,” a United States Citizen, held in deportation detention for over 3 years, and in deportation proceedings for almost a year and half, and never given the satisfaction of holding the Immigration authorities accountable in court.   This is the poster child for outrage for immigration advocates.

Second, the Cotton-Perdue Bill, proposed and supported by President Trump, was trotted out as the grand breakthrough bill to change immigration law forever.  Well, if the President thought he was stabbed in the back on the Obamacare repeal by John McCain, he is going to think he was gangbanged on immigration.  There are probably 20-25 Republican senators who will oppose his bill, and may, if he’s not careful, support a Democrat alternative that could even overcome his veto, along with a good 80-100 votes in the House.  That would serve to be a crippling setback on his promise to crack down on an immigration system that he claims to be stealing American jobs.

The problem with that notion is that it is based upon a flawed set of data that keeps coming up from anti-immigrant nativists.  First, the fact is that farmers and vineyard and orchard growers will be screaming bloody murder over the notion that every worker they would have to sponsor has to practically have college background in order to have sufficient points to qualify to apply for a green card, and that he has to prove (not the employer) that he is not displacing an American worker within 90 days (how is he going to do that from China or Mexico?).  And he has to show that the employer is providing his health care, or he has to pay a bond of up to $100,000.  And the total numbers are going to be shrunk by half, which are already inadequate to meet the demand.  Oh, and goodbye Lottery Program, and goodbye sibling based petitions by U.S. Citizens.

There would be even more hardship.  Parents can only be sponsored by Parents can only sponsor their children until they are 18, rather than 21.  Children and dependents count against a sharply diminished cutoff annual number.  And the point system itself has badly misplaced priorities.  People with large amounts of work experience get nothing in the rating system, especially after age 50.  But easily manipulable young people in their 20s get a full complement of 13 points, higher than experienced business investors.  Cotton-Perdue deserves to be roadkill.

In the meantime, there is a cadre of GOP senators that are pushing for more constructive immigration reform.  Senator Lindsey Graham has proposed a DREAM Act that will protect those immigrants that came here as children, particularly those with DACA eligibility that may be eliminated in September.

The problem is that common sense and compromise has been tortured to death long ago in Washington.  In the meantime, it doesn’t seem to improve much with the distance from there.  The battle over ‘sanctuary city’ designation and federal funding is now in the courts, and is inevitable to end with the Supreme Court.

–Consigiliere Pacifica–


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