Hispanic / Latino

Daily Border Bulletin- Holder cited in contempt, Hispanic voters are the new math of American politics, and more

The Daily Border Bulletin is up! Today's stories include:

Holder is cited in contempt- The attorney general Eric Holder is the first sitting member of a president’s cabinet in US history to be held in contempt of Congress after Republicans vented their fury over a gun-tracking investigation.

Hispanic voters are the new math of American politics- Arturo Vargas from NALEO projects that as many as 12.2 million Hispanics could vote in 2012.

Automobile parts maker will move production to Mexico- Federal Mogul is a worldwide maker of automobile parts, including wiper blades announced that it will move its production from Michigan City, Indiana, to its sister plant in Ciudad Juárez, Mexico.

Daily Border Bulletin- More Hispanics run for Congressional seats, Hispanics are underrepresented in fed jobs, and more

Today's Daily Border Bulletin is up and includes these stories:

More Hispanic candidates are running for Congress- The 2012 election is shaping up as a big one in the House for Hispanics, when more than ever members of this minority group are running for seats in the U.S. Congress.

Hispanics are underrepresented in federal jobs- Hispanics made up 8.1 percent of the federal workforce, compared with 13.6 percent in the overall workforce, a gap that has been consistent for years, according to data the government released Friday June 22nd.

Surface trade increases in NAFTA region- Surface trade between the United States and its North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) partners, Canada and Mexico, was 8.2 percent higher in April than in April 2011, totaling $79.8 billion, according to a press release of the Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) of the U.S. Department of Transportation.

Invite: This Wed, July 18th - Rethinking Immigration Reform: A New Series

Since John McCain and Ted Kennedy built the framework for what is called Comprehensive Immigration Reform in 2005, the policy and political landscape has changed a great deal.  Pieces of CIR have been enacted, others stalled, others need updating.  In the aftermath of a tumultuous few weeks in the immigration reform debate we found ourselves asking – so if a bill were to move in the next Congress, what would it look like? What problems are we trying to solve now, and where should the emphasis be? Is the original McCain-Kennedy framework still applicable to just something else need to be constructed?  

To take a look at these questions NDN/NPI is launching a new series of events we call “Rethinking Immigration Reform.”  Our first in the series is with a terrific and thoughtful group of experts and advocates from across the political spectrum, including:

Tamar Jacoby, President and CEO, ImmigrationWorks USA
Thomas A. Saenz, President and General Counsel, Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF)
Frank Sharry, Executive Director, America's Voice

The first in our series of events will take place July 18th, at NDN/NPI's event space, 729 15th St, NW.  Lunch will be served at noon and the program will begin at 1215pm.   Seating is very limited for this event so please RSVP today.

Below please find some of our recent commentary on the state of the current immigration debate:

Simon's Statement on SCOTUS Immigration Decision Simon Rosenberg 6/25/2012

Why Jan Brewer Should Re-Consider Enforcing "Papers Please" Section of SB1070 Kristian Ramos 6/25/2012

NDN MEMO: With Pres Obama Our Border is Safer, Our Immigration System Better  Simon Rosenberg 6/22/2012

Simon Weighs In on Current Immigration Debate  Anjani Nadadur 6/22/2012

Daily Border Bulletin- Arizona's police agencies challenged to enforce SB 1070, El Paso wants more skilled workers, and more

The Daily Border Bulletin is up! Today's stories include:

Arizona's police agencies challenged to enforce SB 1070- The Supreme Court’s decision to upheld section 2 of the SB 1070 law will complicate the job of Arizona’s local police departments, requiring them to check people’s immigration status as part of their regular traffic stops and other activities.

Reports looks at ways to attract and retain talent in El Paso- Manpower, a consultant firm on workfoce solutions, published the report Labor Market Study of the Paso del Norte Region which includes recommendations on how to attract and retain high skilled workers in North America’s largest cross-border metropolis.

Mexican non-oil exports remain flat- Mexican exports slipped in May on a drop in world oil prices but non-oil exports remained steady. “For second straight month, Mexico posts trade deficit,” the news agency Reuters reported.


Supreme Court rules federal preemption on SB 1070, upholds "check papers" leaves section open to further ruling

The United States Supreme Court determined that three sections of the controversial anti-immigrant law in Arizona, SB 1070, are preempted by federal law and therefore were stroke down. However, the court left standing only the "check your papers" part of the law that requires state and local police to check immigration status of people they've stopped or detained if a "reasonable suspicion" exists they are in the country illegally. The Court ruled that immigration status checks do not interfere with the federal immigration scheme since it considers consultation between federal and state officials.

When the hearings on that key provision occurred back in April, federal judges Sonia Sotomayor, Anthony Kennedy, and Samuel Alito appeared troubled by the SB 1070's provision to allow local law enforcement to detain someone until their immigration status was confirmed. Arizona’s lawyer, Paul Clement, responded that a person could be held for “reasonable time” and that immigration check takes an average of 11 minutes. A lower court blocked key parts of the law immigration policy because the Justice Department made the argument that it interfered with the federal government’s authority to set immigration policy. The federal government never presented the argument of racial profiling as immigration activists have denounced, reported the website Politico.

Arizona's Governor Jan Brewer considered the Supreme Court ruling "a victory for the rule of law" on a written statement. In her opinion, SB 1070 supports the rule of law, including other laws against illegal immigration and racial profiling. Brewer noted that "law enforcement will be held accountable should this statute be misused in a fashion that violates an individual’s civil rights."

Other three sections of Arizona´s SB 1070 were stroke down on the argument of federal preemption. Section 3, which required immigrants to register in a state list, was struck down because t is responsibility of the federal government to create a single integrated and all-embracing registration system.

In the same way, section 5 imposes criminal and civil penalties on employers who knowingly hire, recruit, refer, or continue to employ unauthorized workers. The Supreme Court ruled that it is inappropriate to impose criminal penalties on employers or unauthorized employees and that a state law on this matter would be an obstacle to the regulatory system that Congress chose. The Supreme Court also ruled that it is not “a crime for a removable alien to remain in the United States.” Therefore, SB 1070 which considered “warrantless arrests of immigrants” suspected of being removable represents “an obstacle to federal law.” The Supreme Court cited that according to federal law, the Attorney General can issue a warrant for trained federal immigration officers to execute but those officers can only arrest an alien only when the immigrant is “likely to escape before a warrant can be obtained.”

NDN MEMO: W/ Pres Obama Our Border is Safer, Our Immigration System Better/Romney Offers "Thin Gruel"

With President Obama Our Immigration System Is Better, Our Border Safer/Romney Offers Thin Gruel, Embrace of SB1070/Brewer/Self Deportation/Attrition Approach

In his 2008 campaign President Obama promised to fix our broken immigration system through a strategy we’ve come to know as comprehensive immigration reform (CIR).  CIR’s approach was to improve the system in three ways: 1) deter undocumented immigrants through better enforcement in the workplace and on the border; 2) design a better system for the future flow of immigrants so fewer undocumenteds would enter the country; 3) create a path to legal status for the 11 million undocumented immigrants living and working among us. 

Despite significant efforts by the Administration to pass CIR in 2010, the Republicans refused to go along and using the Senate filibuster blocked passage, as their party didin previous attempts to pass CIR in 2006 and 2007. 

While CIR may not have passed, due to firm leadership from the Obama Administration over the past few years, more of the elements of CIR have been enacted then many realize, leaving our border safer and immigration system better than it was prior to 2009. 

Let’s review what has been done:

Border Safety, Stopping the Flow of Undocumented Immigrants – The Administration has adopted the most aggressive set of border safely initiatives in US history. More money has been allocated, and  personnel dispatched to the border and there has been much greater cooperation with Mexico in tackling these common challenges than any time in our nations history.  The result today is that despite violence on the Mexican side of the border the communities on the US side have some of the lowest crime rates in the US; there has been virtually no spillover violence; progress has been made in stopping the southbound flow of guns and bulk cash; the net flow of undocumented immigrants from Mexico to the US has dropped from 500,000 a year just a few years ago to zero today. 

While the border has become much safer, importantly these efforts have not stifled legal commerce with Mexico.  Trade with Mexico, despite our economic recent downturn, has grown significantly in recent years.  Mexico is now the US’s third largest trading partner, second largest export market and second largest source of foreign tourists of any country in the world.   New ports of entry have been opened for the first time in a decade, and other ports have been modernized. 

Better Workplace Enforcement – After extensive consultation with businesses the Obama Administration transitioned from large-scale workplace arrests of  undocumented workers to a far more effective electronic I-9 audit system. Under the Obama Administration, cases against employers are up sharply: Immigration and Customs Enforcement quadrupled the number of employer audits after Obama took office, increasing the number of inspections and arrests against those who knowingly hire illegal immigrants. Businesses were fined $6.9 million in fiscal 2010, up from $675,000 in 2008. Additionally, the administration has been an aggressive proponent of a national employer verification system, an idea not supported by the current Republican House majority. 

Making Deportation of Criminals A Priority – The Administration has made the deportation of criminal undocumented immigrants the primary deportation priority.  In retrospect, it is hard to believe that this wasn’t the priority of previous Administrations.  Due to the negotiation of unprecedented federal, state and local cooperation on immigration enforcement, this policy has worked.  Net number of deportations of undocumented immigrations are up in the Obama Administration, as are the removal of criminals as a percentage of deportations. 

Temporary Legal Status for DREAMers – The President’s decision to grant deportation relief to DREAM act eligible immigrants was a bold and dramatic act of Presidential leadership, one that should be welcomed by all those who want a better immigration system in America. The move was targeted, legal and the right thing to do.  It will affect about 800,000 of the best and brightest immigrants caught up in a broken system for decisions not of their making. 

Despite Republican opposition, the Obama Administration has made the border safer and the immigration better, while also ensuring a significant increase in trade with Mexico through our common border.  Those who argue that the President’s decision last week to grant two year visas to DREAM eligible youth was election year politics don’t understand that this was just the latest step in a long series of steps to fix our broken immigration – efforts which have seen real and tangible improvement in America’s immigration system.

Romney’s Approach – Thin Policy Gruel, Embrace of Arizona/SB1070 “Self-Deportation.” 

Seen through this light, the Romney immigration outline released yesterday looks like very thin policy gruel.  The enforcement section of his outline lists things already enacted by the Obama Administration.  The reforms in family re-unification, high-end visas and temporary workers are all initiatives already proposed by Democrats, and which do not represent a true redesign of the system necessary to meet the needs of our modern economy and deter future un-documented from entering the country. 

And finally, of course, the outline never addresses the most pressing problem facing our immigration system, the presence of 11 million undocumented immigrants.  From this omission one can only conclude that Governor Romney is sticking with the “self-deportation/attrition” strategy he embraced in the Republican Primaries, a strategy supported by national leaders like Jan Brewer, Joe Arpaio, Kris Kobach and many other Republicans. 

One heard commentators on television this morning praising Governor Romney for softening his tone on immigration.  Perhaps that is the case.  But the only olive branch we saw is in areas of this debate frankly peripheral to fixing the system itself.  On the two big issues – what to do with the undocumenteds and the 800,000 DREAM eligible kids who will have legal visas if Romney were to become President - we are left to assume that they would be subject to the same SB1070/Arizona/Arpaio approach the Governor embraced in the primaries and which will return to the national stage when the Supreme Court rules next week.

Daily Border Bulletin- Mitt Romney´s proposal does not solve unauthorized immigration, and more stories

The Daily Border Bulletin is up! Stories of today are as follows:

Mitt Romney´s proposal does not solve uauthorized immigration- During his speech Thursday to the annual conference of the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO), the Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney did not in any way distance himself from the “self-deportation” strategy he outlined during the GOP primaries.

Mexico refuses to stop antidumping investigation against U.S. chicken-Mexico’s Ministry of Economy refused to revoke a resolution to investigate antidumping practices on chicken quarters from the U.S., reported CNN Expansion.

Mexican presidential front-runner promises a strategy to reduce violence- Last Wednesday, Congressman James Sensenbrenner accused the Mexican presidential front-runner Enrique Peña Nieto of “turning a blind eye to the cartels” because of his proposal to fight drug-related violence in lieu of drug trafficking.

Daily Border Bulletin- Courting Hispanic voters, Fewer Mexicans would move to the U.S., and more

Your Daily Border Bulletin is up! Stories of today include:

Courting Hispanic voters, 2012 presidential candidates focus on immigration- Immigration is roiling the presidential contest as President Barack Obama and Republican Mitt Romney seek to court the nation’s swelling Hispanic voters, reported the Associated Press. The outcome could influence political battle lines and shape American politics for generations.

A minority of Mexicans would move to the U.S., report says- Most Mexicans (61%) say they would not move to the U.S., even if they had the means and opportunity to do so, according to the Spring 2012 Pew Global Attitudes survey conducted in Mexico.

Mexico ranks four in the issuance investor visas to the U.S.- Treaty Trader visas (E-1) and Treaty Investor visas (E-2) are temporary visas for nationals of a country with which the United States maintains a treaty of friendship, commerce and navigation (which includes Mexico) who wish to go to the United States for one of two purposes: to carry on substantial trade, principally between the United States and the treaty country (E-1); or to develop and direct the operations of an enterprise in which the national has invested or is in the process of investing a substantial amount of capital (E-2).

Kristian Ramos on Fox News - Obama's immigration move is smart, fair policy

Friday’s incredible announcement that the White House will be deferring the deportation of DREAM Act students, that is younger undocumented immigrants who came to the US as children and have since led law-abiding lives, is the latest in a series of moves initiated by President Obama to fix a broken immigration system. 

A system which Congressional Republicans have steadfastly refused to help reform. 

The administration’s most recent move cannot be seen as an isolated instance in an election year because it is just one of many times when the president has stepped up to fix an inherited, broken system. 

Simply put, without the legislative work the White House utilized in introducing prosecutorial discretion in August of last year, the current relief for "DREAMers" would be impossible. 

These actions are merely the tip of the iceberg. 

Here are the facts: the president has invested in our border to increase safety, increased legal immigration and trade, and has lowered the number of undocumented immigrants entering the country. Quite simply this administration has done a lot to fix an anachronistic immigration system which no longer works for our country. 

The Republican Party has not been able to pass a single piece of legislation that would do anything to fix our immigration system. They have tried to pass mandatory E-Verify, a national employment verification system; the leadership in the House could not even bring this to the House floor

On the issue of immigration, when it comes to actually pro-actively coming up with ideas to make the legal system of immigration into the country the Republican Party is utterly impotent. 

Currently Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney will not even utter the word  “immigration” in public. Forever living in mortal fear of angering Tea Party activists or further alienating Hispanic activists, has effectively boxed Romney in on this issue. 

Romney has consistently said that he would veto the DREAM Act as president. On the other hand Florida Republican Senator Marco Rubio has thus far been unable to get any support from his party for a Republican version of the DREAM Act, and has yet to release any legislation

In reality the deferment of deportation of our best and brightest undocumented immigrants is smart, fair policy. In no way does it give a pathway to legal citizenship, IT merely offers those who were brought to the United States as young children, who do not present a risk to national security or public safety, an opportunity to continue to contribute to our society as a whole.

The deferment of deportation of our best and brightest undocumented immigrants is smart, fair policy

Furthermore, any immigrant with a criminal background is ineligible for this deferment. This will prevent the deportation of as many as 800,000 of our best and brightest undocumented immigrants. 

Let us be clear: we are NOT talking about millions of people. Still, this has not prevented Texas Republican Rep.Lamar Smith from stating: “President Obama’s decision to grant amnesty to potentially millions of illegal immigrants is a breach of faith with the American people.” 

This is not only false, it also highlights a highlights a very real divide between the president’s vision for our country. It is a question of progress versus the stagnation presented in the “enforcement only” version of our immigration system as espoused by the Republican Party. 

The reality is that this latest move is very much consistent with President Obama's overall vision of fixing our immigration system. This move by the administration is fair. It will not lead toward citizenship but will remove the threat of deportation and grant those who have been in the United States most of their lives the ability to work here legally. 

Cecilia Munoz, White House Domestic Policy Adviser, characterizes this as a next step in a series of administration moves to fix our broken immigration system. One could argue that this is one of the most significant steps in recent immigration reform in recent memory. It is this type of bold leadership which will eventually lead to broader reforms of our broken immigration system.

This has been cross posted on Fox News.com 

Daily Border Bulletin- Texas takes new position on immigration; Arizona awaits Supreme Court decision; Travel to Mexico is up

Your Daily Border Bulletin is up! Stories of the day are as follows:

Republicans in Texas take new position on immigration- The Texas Republican Convention approved a party platform on immigration conceding that mass deportation of illegal immigrants isn’t practical and calling for “common ground” to develop more-realistic strategies.

Arizona’s SB 1070 awaits decision in the Supreme Court- The country’s judicial authority has three last weeks to release a decision, generally on Mondays, on the legal challenges against Arizona’s anti-immigrant law.

More Americans travel to Mexico- The Mexican Ministry of Tourism says more than 2 million U.S. tourists flew to Mexico between January and April of this year, up 11% from the same period in 2011.

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