Tag Archives: Donald Trump immigration policy

Trump/Sessions Anti-Immigrant Policy Requires Novel Theory of Constitution: Citizens Only

US Supreme Court Building, DC. The Trump/Sessions anti-immigration policy relies on a novel theory of the Constitution: that it does not apply to noncitizens © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

by Karen Rubin, News & Photo Features

The question that came to my mind as I listened to Natanya Briendel, director of the Westchester Division at the Pace Women’s Justice Center, speak at the monthly meeting of Reach Out America, a Long Island-based activist group, was how Donald Trump and Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ roundups of undocumented immigrants rests on a concept that the Constitution – specifically due process – does not apply to non-citizens. Technically, then, any foreigner in the United States could be picked up and denied habeas corpus – the right to appear speedily in front of a judge, hear the charges and put up a defense.

She described situations where people are being rounded up based on an accusation, and if they are undocumented, immediately incarcerated and deported.  No warrant. No reasonable cause to justify a search. No right to legal counsel or even a hearing before a judge.

Even people who are claiming asylum based on escaping violence in their home country, are treated as if they were criminals.

The result has been sheer terror for the 11 million undocumented immigrants in this country. Why so many? Because Republicans going back to Reagan have refused to establish a workable immigration program; during Obama’s Administration, the House Republicans literally shoved a Comprehensive Immigration bill in the desk and never voted on it. Employers have benefited from having a pool of people who are abused, cheated, and treated like indentured servants.

Here in Long Island, we have an instance where just being Hispanic renders a high school student vulnerable to accusations of membership in the dreaded M-13 gang based on what colors you wear to school.

Donald Trump in his national security speech (really a rehash of his dystopian inaugural address), equates all immigrants as terrorists, regardless if they have lived, worked and paid taxes in the United States for decades, describing the need to shut off refugees, cancel DACA, end the possibility of family members obtaining legal status. Even individuals currently serving in the military, who were promised citizenship at the end of their tour, will be subject to deportation.

Our strategy advances four vital national interests.  First, we must protect the American people, the homeland, and our great American way of life.  This strategy recognizes that we cannot secure our nation if we do not secure our borders.  So for the first time ever, American strategy now includes a serious plan to defend our homeland.  It calls for the construction of a wall on our southern border; ending chain migration and the horrible visa and lottery programs; closing loopholes that undermine enforcement; and strongly supporting our Border Patrol agents, ICE officers, and Homeland Security personnel.”

The callousness, the stupidity, the sheer contradiction of American values, principles, and law.

Meanwhile, 12,762 DACA recipients – 122 a day – have lost their protected status since September 5, when President Trump rescinded the executive order that protected immigrants who arrived here as children from deportation, who were raised in the United States which is the only country they know. Trump gave a deadline of March, but the Republican Congress has shown it doesn’t actually care. Trump has reneged on the “deal” he appeared to make with Schumer and Pelosi; Democrats have threatened to use the only leverage they have – shutting down government by refusing to reauthorize a budget resolution – but that is unlikely.

Immigrants are no longer welcome. That is, unless the immigrant can buy a visa by investing $500,000 in a Trump family real estate venture,  or a migrant imported to work at Mar-a-Lago (when there are tens of thousands of Puerto Rican hotel workers who lost their jobs after Maria and have sought refuge in Florida – why is he not hiring them? Answer: because they can register to vote in Florida. After all, Puerto Ricans are American citizens.)

“Critics say that if passed, the reform [of the H-2A agricultural visa program] could lead to millions of virtually indentured workers,” writes Simon Davis-Cohen in Truthout. (“Republicans Push Bill to Strip Migrant Workers of Their Few Rights, Undercut US Workers”)

On the other hand, the way Trump and Sessions are inflicting their might, it means that undocumented individuals are no longer protected by law – they can be physically abused by a spouse, cheated by an employer of their wages, have their children taken from them without recourse to seek custody. They have no way of protecting their civil rights, their human rights, because the courthouse has become a locus for them to be snatched up by immigration officers. They are fearful to report crimes; certainly to warn officials of any terror threats.

Here on Long Island – the very place where Trump gave a speech suggesting that police officers don’t have to be “so nice” when they stuff someone into their patrol car, the New York Civil Liberties Union filed suit against the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Office Monday, arguing that it lacks authority under state law to honor detainer requests from Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). Detainers ask local officers to hold immigrants after they would otherwise be released from custody. This suit seeks the release of Susai Francis, a resident of Long Island for 21 years, where he has raised two sons, who should have been released after pleading guilty to disorderly conduct but instead was being held for ICE in a Suffolk County jail.

“Not only should local law enforcement reject the Trump administration’s anti-immigrant agenda, but state law is also clear that local law enforcement can’t violate people’s rights in order to do ICE’s bidding,” said Donna Lieberman, executive director of the New York Civil Liberties Union. “The role of local law enforcement is to protect and serve all New Yorkers, and that is incompatible with the unlawful detention of our neighbors and family members at the behest of the Trump deportation machine.”

The day before Trump gave his national security speech calling again for a border wall and shutting down immigration, and offering not a crumb of possibility of the comprehensive immigration reform that should have been in place for 30 years so that people can get some legal status and not live in the shadows where they can be exploited, was United Nations International Migrants Day. Not a peep from the White House. Instead, the United States announced it would end participation in the UN process to develop a Global Compact on Migration (GCM) based on the claim that it would undermine “sovereignty”.

With civil war, ethnic conflict, gang violence, drought, famine, floods, wildfires and climate disasters, there are the largest number of refugees and displaced people in numbers not seen since World War II: 40 8 million displaced people worldwide as a result of conflict and violence at the end of 2015; an estimated 64 million are impacted by climate.

(Trump, in his national security speech, dismissed climate change as a national security threat, suggesting instead that increasing American energy production would be the counter balance.)

Immigrants are lumped together.  “You think the countries are giving us their best people? No. What kind of a system is that?”Trump said at a press conference. “They give us their worst people, they put them in a bin, but in his hand when he’s picking them is really the worst of the worst.”

Trump’s view – big on a wall stretching along the southern border, a travel ban which shuts down access from six Muslim majority nations (none of which have been responsible for terrorism in the US), reducing the number of refugees who will be accepted to a trickle (45,000) while threatening to throw out others (Haitians, Nicaraguans) – is to pull up the drawbridge, much like the Soviet Union’s Iron Curtain or China’s Bamboo Curtain, and keep us equally isolated and ignorant, reciting the Trump mantra of America’s Greatness.

Combined with banning words and phrases at agencies, scrubbing reports and websites, spying on federal workers, Trump’s declaration is more ominous: “With this strategy, we are calling for a great reawakening of America, a resurgence of confidence, and a rebirth of patriotism, prosperity, and pride.

It is more: the disdain for civil rights for noncitizens within our borders means that the Trump Doctrine, which we now know is purely transactional, means that there is zero interest in upholding human rights.

“We want strong alliances and partnerships based on cooperation and reciprocity.  We will make new partnerships with those who share our goals, and make common interests into a common cause.  We will not allow inflexible ideology to become an obsolete and obstacle to peace.”

Trump’s view, enabled by the Republican Congress, is so warped. But there is another way: reauthorize DACA with a path to citizenship; provide legal status (not citizenship) for people who came illegally but who have worked and made homes here and have no significant criminal record, particularly the parents of DACA recipients and American children; have vetting for travelers, but accept travelers; exercise moral responsibility in accepting refugees, helping resettle refugees, and contributing funds toward refugee communities. And participate in the world to reduce the causes for refugees, migrants and immigrants: help end the conflicts and violence that sets people on their precarious journey; address climate change that is resulting in communities being uninhabitable; and advance the quality of life in these countries.

None of these generators of the desperation that motivates people to uproot their lives and take a treacherous journey to a strange place are satisfied by Trump’s “national security strategy” which puts American First and to hell with the rest of the world.


© 2017 News & Photo Features Syndicate, a division of Workstyles, Inc. All rights reserved. For editorial feature and photo information, go to www.news-photos-features.com, email editor@news-photos-features.com. Blogging at www.dailykos.com/blogs/NewsPhotosFeatures.  ‘Like’ us on facebook.com/NewsPhotoFeatures, Tweet @KarenBRubin



As Trump Attempts to ‘Clarify’ Signature Immigration Policy, Clinton Agrees has Remained Same: Inhumane, Undoable, UnAmerican

Hillary for America campaign blasts Donald Trump’s charade to “soften” stance on immigration, stating, “as Trump attempts to distract from his bigotry and disguise his dangerous ideas, he and his own campaign have continued to reaffirm that the defining policy proposal of his candidacy remains the same as it's always been: forcibly remove 16 million people from this country.”
Hillary for America campaign blasts Donald Trump’s charade to “soften” stance on immigration, stating, “as Trump attempts to distract from his bigotry and disguise his dangerous ideas, he and his own campaign have continued to reaffirm that the defining policy proposal of his candidacy remains the same as it’s always been: forcibly remove 16 million people from this country.”

After a whirlwind visit to Mexico to meet with President Peña Nieto, Donald Trump is slated to give a speech on immigration which is supposed to clarify what policy he might implement as President, after a week of attempting to couch his extreme policies in “softened” rhetoric.

“But make no mistake: Trump will always be Trump, and he is the same today as he was on the first day of his presidential campaign,” the Hillary for America campaign stated.”At his campaign launch, he stood in Trump Tower and told the world that, when it comes to immigrants from Mexico, ‘they’re bringing drugs, they’re bringing crime, they’re rapists.’

“From the first days of his campaign, Donald Trump has painted Mexicans as ‘rapists’ and criminals and has promised to deport 16 million people, including children and U.S. citizens. He has said we should force Mexico to pay for his giant border wall.  He has said we should ban remittances to families in Mexico if Mexico doesn’t pay up. What ultimately matters is what Donald Trump says to voters in Arizona, not Mexico, and whether he remains committed to the splitting up of families and deportation of millions.”  

The HFA campaign continued, “While Trump may try to disguise his plans by throwing in words like ‘humane’ or ‘fair,’ the reality is that Trump’s agenda echoes the extreme right’s will – one that is fueling a dangerous movement of hatred across the country.

“So as Trump attempts to distract from his bigotry and disguise his dangerous ideas, he and his own campaign have continued to reaffirm that the defining policy proposal of his candidacy remains the same as it’s always been: forcibly remove 16 million people from this country.”

The campaign wants to remind voters of Trump’s position on immigration, and also state Clinton’s position, which has been “pants-on-fire” mischaracterized by Trump as “open-borders” but is a detailed plan for comprehensive immigration reform that provides a path for legalization and keeping families together:

TRUMP: “I don’t think it’s a softening… I’ve had people say it’s a hardening, actually.” [Anderson Cooper 360, CNN, 8/25/16]

  • TRUMP:“I will tell you we are tougher maybe than ever in a certain respect.” [NH1 News, 8/25/16]

Vice Presidential Nominee Mike Pence: “Nothing has changed about Donald Trump’s position on dealing with illegal immigration… It is going to be fair. It is going to be tough. But there will be no path to legalization, no path to citizenship unless people leave the country.” [State of the Union, CNN, 8/28/16]

Campaign Manager Kellyanne Conway: “It is this week what it’s always been.” [New Day, CNN, 8/25/16]

  • Conway:“He’s said no path to legalization, no path to citizenship and no amnesty. You can return home, and if you would like to go stand in line, like everybody else is… stand in line, wait your turn, go through the normal courses. Then that would be evaluated on a case by case basis.” [Good Morning America, ABC, 8/26/16]

Campaign Spokeswoman Katrina Pierson: “…he hasn’t changed his position, he has changed the words that he is saying.” [New Day, CNN, 8/25/16]

  • Pierson:“There is not a different message. He is using different words to give the message, because everyone on the news is saying that he is a bigot and that he is a racist because of the words he uses.” [New Day, CNN, 8/25/16]

Rick Perry: “Donald Trump is not softening his position on immigration.” [Fox & Friends, FOX, 8/30/16]

Donald Trump Jr.: “He wasn’t softening on anything. He didn’t change his stance on anything.” [CNN, 8/30/16]
No matter who surrounds Trump, his hateful rhetoric about immigrants and dangerous policies remain. He would deport an estimated 16 million, including every single undocumented immigrant and U.S. citizens born here to undocumented parents…

TRUMP: “We’re going to take people that are here illegally, and we’re going to move them out. Got to move them out. We’re a country of laws, and we’ve got to remain that way.” [Florida GOP Sunshine Summit, Orlando FL, 11/13/15]

TRUMP: “We have at least 11 million people in this country that came in illegally. They will go out.” [Republican Primary Debate, Houston TX, 2/25/16]

TRUMP: “We’re going to keep the families together… but they have to go,” [Meet the Press, 8/16/16]
Send a deportation force into schools, workplaces and homes in communities across America…  

TRUMP: “You’re going to have a deportation force, and you’re going to do it humanely…’” [Washington Post, 11/11/15]

TRUMP: “We’re rounding them up in a very humane way, in a very nice way. And they’re going to be happy because they want to be legalized. And, by the way, I know it doesn’t sound nice, but not everything is nice, somebody has to do it.” [60 Minutes, CBS, 9/27/15]

TRUMP: “You know if you back to the early 1950s, Dwight Eisenhower… he moved out 1.5 million people and brought them back to where they came from. They were here illegally. I think — it really does have big precedent.” [Hannity, Fox News, 11/10/15]

TRUMP: “…Eisenhower had the exact same situation and he moved out one and a half million people and very few people talked about it and it was a tough situation, but what he did is he did it. And, you know, I like Ike.” [Mornings With Maria, 11/6/15]
Rescind DACA and DAPA…

TRUMP: “I will immediately terminate President Obama’s illegal executive order on immigration. Immediately.” [Presidential Announcement Speech, New York NY, 6/16/15]

TRUMP: “I’m also going to cancel all unconstitutional orders, executive orders, you’ve been hearing about that. We have a little bit of an excessive executive order president and empower the rank and file ICE officers and border patrol officers to finally do the jobs that they were meant to do.” [Roast N’ Ride, Des Moines IA, 8/27/16]
End birthright citizenship and deport U.S. citizens…

The Trump Campaign’s report Immigration Reform That Will Make America Great Again calls for an end to birthright citizenship, saying it “remains the biggest magnet for illegal immigration.”

Sean Hannity: “One of the important aspects when you hear about his plan — you hear about his plan you hear about visas, you hear about people overstaying them. You hear, for example, no birth-right citizenship, correct?”

TRUMP: “Right.” [Hannity Town Hall, Fox News, Austin TX, 8/24/16]

Bill O’Reilly: “But here is a scenario, ok?  Illegal immigrant mother and father living in Los Angeles, two children who are American citizens, born here.  If you’re president do you order authorities to take that family into custody?”

TRUMP: “We have no choice.  I’m sorry, Bill.  We have to bring them out.” [O’Reilly Factor, Fox News, 8/24/15]
Subject all immigrants to religious tests and ban the world’s 1.5 billion Muslims from entering the country…

“Donald J. Trump is calling for a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country’s representatives can figure out what is going on.” [Donald Trump Press Release, 12/7/15]

TRUMP: “Take a look at [FDR’s] presidential proclamations back a long time ago, 2525, 2526, 2527. What he was doing with Germans, Italians, and Japanese because he had to do it.” [Trump on Morning Joe, NBC News, 6/27/16]

TRUMP: “On immigration, we will temporarily suspend immigration from any place where adequate screening cannot be performed. Extreme vetting. Remember. Extreme vetting. All applicants for immigration will be vetted for ties to radical ideology, and we will screen out anyone who doesn’t share our values and love our people.” [Trump Campaign Speech, Charlotte NC, 8/18/16]
And build a giant concrete wall along our southern border.

TRUMP: “We’re going to build a wall. It’s going to be a real. It’s going to be a wall that is powerful and that people aren’t going to be going under or up or around or anything else.” [Erin Burnett Outfront, CNN, 11/12/15]

TRUMP: “It’ll be a real wall… I think the height could be 35 to 45 feet. That’s a good height.” [Hannity Town Hall, Fox News, Austin TX, 8/24/16]
What’s more, Trump has deployed lie after lie about Hillary Clinton’s plan for comprehensive immigration reform in an attempt to deceive and exploit voters so they buy into his dark, dystopian, and fabricated view of immigration in America.

Washington Post’s Fact Checker – “Four Pinocchios” for Falsely High Crime Statistics: “Trump’s wild rhetoric over deporting all unauthorized immigrants for bringing crimes like murder into the U.S. underscores a common public misperception that violent crime is correlated with immigration, especially illegal immigration. He continues to assert that crime is spiking because of illegal immigration, this time in California, but this claim remains unsupported…Four Pinocchios.” [Fact Checker, Washington Post, 5/13/16]

PolitiFact.com – “Pants on Fire” for a False TV Ad: “Trump’s television ad purports to show Mexicans swarming over ‘our southern border.’ However, the footage used to support this point actually shows African migrants streaming over a border fence between Morocco and the Spanish enclave of Melilla, more than 5,000 miles away. We rate the claim Pants on Fire.” [Politifact.com, 1/4/16]

Washington Post’s Fact Checker – “Four Pinocchios” for Another False TV Ad – this Time on Social Security: “The Republican presidential nominee makes a bizarre claim that undocumented immigrants will collect Social Security under a Clinton presidency… The broad assertion in this ad is just not supported by facts, and thus earns Four Pinocchios.” [Fact Checker, Washington Post, 8/20/16]

PolitiFact.com – Trump’s Claim “False” That Undocumented Immigrants Will Take Americans’ Jobs: “Trump says Clinton is ‘proposing to print instant work permits for millions of illegal immigrants to come in and take everybody’s jobs, including low-income African-Americans.’… The green cards would be available to students who are already legally in the United States. And given their level of education and expertise, they would not be taking jobs of low-income Americans. Nor is the program aimed at millions of students. We rate the statement False.” [Politifact.com, 8/18/16]

PolitiFact.com – No, Trump, Clinton Will Not Create “Open Borders”:“Trump said Clinton’s immigration platform would ‘create totally open borders.’ This is a huge distortion of Clinton’s proposals… We rate this claim False.” [Politifact.com, 6/23/16]

Clinton Plan for Comprehensive Immigration Reform

Governor Mike Pence recently said that there is a very clear contrast between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump’s immigration policies. He is absolutely correct.

Unlike Trump, Clinton has promised that she will fight for comprehensive immigration reform within her first 100 days that offers a pathway to full and equal citizenship, fixes the family visa backlog, and protects our borders and national security. She will:

  • Fight for comprehensive immigration reform legislation with a path to full and equal citizenship.
  • Defend President Obama’s DACA and DAPA executive actions.
  • Do everything possible under the law to go further to protect families.
  • Conduct humane, targeted immigration enforcement.
  • End family detention.
  • Close private immigrant detention centers.
  • Ensure families can buy into Affordable Care Act exchanges, regardless of immigration status.
  • Promote naturalization.
  • Remove the 3- and 10-year bars to keep families together.

Hillary Clinton: “The truth is, too many people today feel left out and left behind.  That’s not the America we want to be.  Instead of demonizing hard-working immigrant families, we should be giving them a real path to citizenship.” [Clinton Remarks, 1/21/16]

“We won’t be fooled by Trump’s attempts to distract from his bigotry and disguise his dangerous ideas. Donald Trump will be who he has always been: Donald Trump,” the Hillary for America campaign stated.