A day after being released from federal custody in Pennsylvania, a Haitian immigrant whose detention in December touched off protests told supporters at a Manhattan church on Sunday that he was so close to being deported this month that friends were waiting for him at the airport in Port-au-Prince.
Sometimes conventional wisdom is wrong.
That’s how it is with the assumption that Republican Scott Brown’s victory over Democrat Martha Coakley in the Massachusetts Senate race means that there will be no immigration reform this year.
The Maryland Hispanic population has increased by at least 65 percent since the 2000 Census, contributing to increasing ethnic diversity nationally, according to a new U.S. Census Bureau report.
Congressional Democrats are anxiously anticipating President Barack Obama’s State of the Union address on Wednesday as they look to him to reverse a precipitous political slide that has endangered their majorities and helped revive the GOP.
For months, pundits in Washington have been dying to write the obituary for comprehensive immigration reform. Predictably, they’re using Tuesday night’s special election in Massachusetts as a chance to do just that. But what they overlook is that immigration may well be one of the few issues where a bipartisan breakthrough is possible. Yes, Democrats have lost their 60-seat supermajority in the Senate. But, unlike many issues, the coalition to enact comprehensive immigration reform has always been bipartisan in nature, and the bill was always going to require support from both Democrats and Republicans to move forward.
You might remember Krikorian from when he was named Worst Person in the World by Keith Olberman for trying to push some of that “Anglo-conformity” on Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor for pronouncing her name too ethnically: “Deferring to people’s own pronunciation of their names should obviously be our first inclination, but there ought to be limits. Putting the emphasis on the final syllable of Sotomayor is unnatural in English…”
But Krikorian isn’t the only leader of the anti-immigrant movement who’s felt the need to weigh in on the Haitian tragedy. After President Obama and a bipartisan group of Members of Congress granted Temporary Protected Status (TPS) to Haitian immigrants living in the United States, Congressman Steve King (R-IA) argued that Haitian immigrants in the U.S. should be deported (in order to “help with the relief effort”).
In today’s Congress Daily, Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) identified the key lesson both parties need to learn from the special election in Massachusetts this week: the American people sent policymakers to Washington to solve tough problems, not run from them. He blasted politicians who think the smartest strategy heading into the November mid-term elections is to avoid issues like immigration reform and said, “From my point of view, the real reason we’re all here is to govern the country and do hard things.”
Even before Senator-elect Scott P. Brown is sworn in, Massachusetts political groups are starting to call on him to back specific policies in Washington.
The Springfield-based Alliance to Develop Power, a community organization that advocates social and economic justice, will hold a press conference Friday to call on Brown to support immigration reform that offers a path to citizenship, to back an “emergency public jobs” program to put people back to work in Massachusetts, and other policies designed to assist the most needy.
The first time I saw her, I was ordering a pizza. Mariam Sarkisian was a teenager helping her father, who owned the place, a typical pizzeria in a mall in the suburbs of Henderson five or six years ago.
The immigrant station’s past underscores America’s contradictory approach to immigration: The U.S. welcomes the ‘huddled masses yearning to be free’ even as it unfairly detains and deports newcomers.