Jan 28

GOP Hands Obama and Dems Big Win on Immigration Deal

There is an art to political stagecraft, a sort of medium-is-the-message thing, which explains why President Obama will be in Las Vegas on Tuesday to begin his effort to overhaul the nation’s confounding immigration system.

For generations, the West was a Republican stronghold, the land of Goldwater and Reagan and sagebrush rebels. But a change began under President Clinton and was hastened under President Obama, who twice added Nevada and Colorado to the Democrats’ stable of support in the West.

The reason, in short, is Latino voters.

The rise of Latino power, which began in California as a backlash to the heated rhetoric surrounding Proposition 187, the 1994 anti-illegal-immigration initiative, has steadily spread eastward, giving once-red states a distinctly more blue tinge.

There may be no better illustration than California’s next-door neighbor.

Obama won Nevada in 2008 by a whopping 12 percentage points. By all rights, however, Republican Mitt Romney should have been strongly competitive there in 2012. He had an organizational base among the state’s large Mormon population, and Nevada has been an economic basket case for years, with jobless, foreclosure and bankruptcy rates that set a national standard for awfulness.

Read more at the LATimes

Obama carried the state, however, winning in November by more than 6 percentage points.

Strong Latino support is one reason. What happened in Nevada reflected the results nationwide: The percentage of Latino voters grew to 18% of the electorate, from 15% in 2008, and Obama won their support by a crushingly large margin.

Immigration has become the Democrats’ wedge issue, drawing small-business-owning and culturally conservative Latinos away from the GOP in the way Republicans long used abortion and other contentious social issues to pry working-class Democrats away from their party moorings.

As an added political benefit to Democrats, the issue of illegal immigration splits the GOP between enforcement-only hard-liners and advocates of a more balanced approach that would mix fortified borders with some path to citizenship for the millions of immigrants in the United States illegally. To hard-liners, that amounts to amnesty for lawbreakers and an unacceptable capitulation to Obama and his fellow Democrats.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.aicfoundation.com/gop-hands-obama-and-dems-big-win-on-immigration-deal/

Jan 28

Illegal Aliens to Get Instant Amnesty in Senate Plan

The immigration framework released by a high-powered group of  senators on  Monday shows a careful bargain that tries to address some of  the hurdles that  have helped sink earlier efforts to pass a  legalization bill.

Four Democrats and four Republicans, including most of the top  senators who  have been prominent on immigration in recent years, will  hold a press  conference Monday afternoon to kick off the immigration  debate, a day ahead of  a major speech on the issue by President Obama in  Las Vegas.

The senators’ plan would grant immediate  legal probationary status to most  illegal immigrants, but would delay  giving them a full path to citizenship  until the country’s borders are  deemed more secure, and until the government  creates a system that can  track visitors to make sure they aren’t overstaying  their visas.

And  tackling one of the thorniest issues of access to welfare and other   public benefits, the senators said those who get legal status won’t be   immediately eligible for new assistance.

Read more at the Washington Times.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.aicfoundation.com/illegal-aliens-to-get-instant-amnesty-in-senate-plan/

Jan 28

Illinois Driver’s License Plan for Illegals Vulnerable to Fraud

As Illinois becomes the fourth and most populous state to give illegal immigrants permission to drive, nagging concerns remain about whether there are enough safeguards to avoid the identity fraud and other pitfalls other states faced.

Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn signed Illinois’ measure into law Sunday in Chicago. Backers, including Quinn, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and some of the state’s top Republicans, tout it as a public-safety measure. They argue that required facial recognition technology is reliable enough to prevent fraud.

They hailed it as an important step for immigrant rights in Illinois, which approved its own Dream Act in 2010 to create a privately-funded scholarship program for immigrant students. President Barack Obama plans to discuss his plan to overhaul the immigration system during a trip to Las Vegas on Tuesday.

“This was a bipartisan effort to pass an important law,” Quinn said. “When the president speaks on Tuesday, he can say about his home state of Illinois … we not only passed the Dream Act last year, we passed driver’s licenses for those who are undocumented .”

However, the law’s opponents have pointed to hundreds of fraudulent cases in New Mexico, Washington and Utah after those states began giving illegal immigrants permission to drive. Illinois will not require applicants to be fingerprinted, for fear that would discourage immigrants from applying.

Read more at NPR

Permanent link to this article: https://www.aicfoundation.com/illinois-drivers-license-plan-for-illegals-vulnerable-to-fraud/

Jan 28

GOP Leaders Agree to Help Dems Import New Voters

A bipartisan group of eight senators plans to announce they have agreed on a  set of principles for comprehensive immigration reform.

The deal, which will be announced at a news conference Monday afternoon,  covers border security, guest workers and employer verification, as well as a  path to citizenship for the 11 million illegal immigrants already in this  country.

The eight senators expected to endorse the new principles are Democrats  Charles Schumer of New York, Dick Durbin of Illinois, Robert Menendez of New  Jersey and Michael Bennet of Colorado; and Republicans John McCain of Arizona,  Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, Marco Rubio of Florida and Jeff Flake of  Arizona.

Read more at Fox News

Permanent link to this article: https://www.aicfoundation.com/gop-leaders-agree-to-help-dems-import-new-voters/

Jan 26

Judge Rules Agents Can Bring Suit against Obama Amnesty Edict

A U.S. district judge ruled that ten Immigration Customs and Enforcement (ICE) agents have legal standing to challenge the Obama Administration’s edict granting amnesty to illegal aliens in the “Dream Act” category. The agents maintained that the edict violates U.S. law and forces them to violate their oaths to uphold the law. The administration made no comment following the ruling.    

Read more at Bloomberg.com

Permanent link to this article: https://www.aicfoundation.com/judge-rules-agents-can-bring-suit-against-obama-amnesty-edict/

Jan 25

Iowa Bureau Okays Driver’s Licenses for Illegal Aliens

Almost 5,000 young immigrants in Iowa allowed to stay and work in the United States under presidential order will be eligible to apply for a state-issued driver’s license after all, the Iowa Department of Transportation announced Wednesday.

The agency had angered immigration activists late last month by determining that state law prohibited it from issuing licenses to persons granted “Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival Status” by President Obama’s administration. But DOT Director Paul Trombino said Wednesday that new guidance from federal officials prompted him to reconsider.

Read more at the Press-Citizen

Permanent link to this article: https://www.aicfoundation.com/iowa-bureau-okays-drivers-licenses-for-illegal-aliens/

Jan 25

N.M. Gov. Says Driver’s Licenses for Illegals Are Dangerous

New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez said Wednesday that she plans a new push to repeal the state law allowing undocumented immigrants to obtain driver’s licenses.

Martinez, who has tried to get the law repealed twice before, described it as dangerous in a post on her official Facebook page.

“I am once again asking the legislature to repeal the law that gives driver’s licenses to illegal immigrants,” said Martinez, a Republican. “I am always willing to discuss this issue with legislators from both parties and explore ways to find common ground, but I believe the most effective solution is to simply repeal this dangerous law.”

Read more at CNN.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.aicfoundation.com/n-m-gov-says-drivers-licenses-for-illegals-are-dangerous/

Jan 25

U.S. Taxpayers Paid $91 Million in Health Care for Illegal Aliens

Medicare payments to health care providers for services rendered to illegal  aliens totaled more than $91.6 million from 2009 to 2011, a new report released by the Department of Health and Human  Services Office of the Inspector General revealed.

The $91.6 million in claims went toward services for a 2,575 illegal aliens.  Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) records, however, identified  over 29,100 beneficiaries that were in the country illegally at some point in  the timeframe the IOG investigated.

The inspector general’s office limited its audit to those 2,575 to look “at  whether CMS had adequate controls to prevent and detect improper payments for  Medicare services rendered to unlawfully present individuals

Read more at the Daily Caller.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.aicfoundation.com/u-s-taxpayers-paid-91-million-in-health-care-for-illegal-aliens/

Jan 24

FOX News Sells Out on Amnesty

Fox News, which once offered commentary against amnesty, now appears to support it. Fox commentators Sean Hannity and Bill O’Reilly, who previously opposed amnesty, have endorsed the legalization of illegal aliens. The network may be following the direction of its owner, Rupert Murdoch, who advocates “sweeping, generous immigration reform,” including a “pathway to citizenship” for illegals.  

Read more at The Daily Caller.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.aicfoundation.com/fox-news-sells-out-on-amnesty/

Jan 24

Agencies Make Money from Refugee Resettlement

A report by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) noted that private agencies involved in refugee resettlement receive substantial public funding for their work. Three months after resettlement the agencies have no further responsibility for the refugees who commonly sign up for public assistance programs. In the past, refugee sponsors had to pay resettlement costs out of their own pockets. The largest resettlement agency is the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, which  conducts resettlement though its affiliate, Catholic Charities.

Read more at The Tennessean.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.aicfoundation.com/agencies-make-money-from-refugee-resettlement/