kevin appleby: Page 1
Marco Rubio leads smear campaign against anti-amnesty groups FAIR, NumbersUSA, and CIS (Mario Lopez, Alfonso Aguilar) - 02/14/13
A new battle has flared inside the Republican Party in recent days as supporters of more-liberal immigration laws wage a behind-the-scenes campaign to discredit the influential advocacy groups that have long powered the GOP's hard-line stance on the issue.
"Temporary" Protected Status for Haitian illegal aliens pushed by profiteers (Haiti earthquake) - 01/14/10
[TPS has been approved; see the update below]
Yesterday, Janet Napolitano of the Department of Homeland Security suspended repatriations of illegal aliens from Haiti; that makes some sense as long as it's actually temporary. What doesn't make sense are the calls from some to give "Temporary Protected Status" in the U.S. to Haitian illegal aliens. The word "temporary" is generally a misnomer as that status is renewed over and over.
TPS would be an infected band-aid that wouldn't fix Haiti's structural problems and in some cases would result in importing Haiti's problems into the U.S. It would also result in brain-draining that country of its more energetic citizens, making things easier for corrupt Haitian leaders. These pushing TPS are at root simply self-serving: they're interested in little more than obtaining political power. They're thinking only of themselves instead of trying to solve problems; they're only making the long-term situation worse.
"Well, we have, as you know, many Haitian Americans. Most are here legally. Some are not documented. And the Obama administration is taking steps to make sure that people are given some temporary status so that we don’t compound the problem that we face in Haiti."
Senators Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand of New York, both Democrats, and (Representatives Lincoln Diaz Balart and Mario Diaz Balart) of south Florida, both Republicans, as well as John C. Favalora, the Roman Catholic archbishop of Miami... "If this is not a slam-dunk case for temporary protected status, I don’t know what is," said Kevin Appleby, a spokesman for the bishops. He said the status would allow Haitian immigrants here to work here and send money back to relatives in Haiti trying to recover from the quake.
Appleby's proposal is at heart immoral: he would encourage Haiti to become even more dependent on the U.S. than they already are and he would embed that dependence in their society, instead of encouraging them to develop their own commerce.
The letter from Senators encouraging TPS is here; in addition to Gillibrand and Schumer, the signatories are: John Kerry, Paul Kirk, Jeff Bingaman, Bill Nelson, Dick Durbin, Frank Lautenberg, Chris Dodd, Bob Menendez, Pat Leahy, Dianne Feinstein, Tom Harkin, Bob Casey, and Bernie Sanders.
(The Florida politicians including Ileana Ros Lehtinen) are among several leaders holding separate news conferences in Miami on Thursday to draw further attention to the issue. Others include the head of the Florida Immigrant Advocacy Center, who will be accompanied by Edwidge Danticat, a celebrated Haitian author and winner of a MacArthur Fellow "genius" grant. Twenty-six refugee agencies also sent a joint letter Thursday urging Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano to consider TPS for Haitians, and the National Council of La Raza released a statement to the same effect.
That also contains Mark Krikorian seeming to support TPS in this case, as well as this:
"When somebody works here they can support up to 10 times that number back in Haiti. So we're talking about supporting hundreds of thousands of people in Haiti at no cost to U.S. taxpayers," (Steve Forester, a Miami-based advocate with the Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti) said.
Obviously, he's either trying to mislead people or he can't think things through. Many or most of the jobs they'd be doing would be jobs that Americans who are drawing unemployment insurance could be doing, and much of the labor those Haitians would be doing in the U.S. would be heavily subsidized.
"We are considering all alternatives available to us in extending a helping hand to Haiti," (Alejandro Mayorkas of the USCIS) said. He confirmed those considerations include temporary protected status for Haitians.
And, Reform Immigration for America is also promoting TPS with a petition drive: reformimmigrationforamerica.org/blog/blog/
The Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society has joined with several other groups in calling for TPS:
Likewise with Christians for Comprehensive Immigration Reform:
"It is in the foreign policy interest of the United States and a humanitarian imperative of the highest order to have all people of Haitian descent in a position to contribute towards the recovery of this island nation."
See the comments above.
1/15/10 UPDATE: Janet Napolitano has now approved TPS, but only for those illegal aliens who were here on Tuesday. How they'll be able to tell isn't clear; some people will no doubt try to provide fake documentation showing they were here at that time.
Not only does it make no sense, it's dangerous. One of the provisions involves a national ID card for we citizens:
Initial implementation of secure identification tools for all Americans and aliens seeking employment... Legal U.S. residents seeking work will use a high-security proof of identity and citizenship... To avoid fraud, racial profiling, and failure of EEVS system, it will also be necessary for Americans seeking work in the future to use secure IDsIt also has a vague indentured servitude flavor to it:
Seasonal workers would contract with their employers, guaranteeing that the laborer will be available for the duration of the seasonAnd, it contains provisions oddly similar to remarks Mitt Romney has made, such as the "probationary registration of aliens" and "universe of illegals seeking adjustment will be known".
- A seasonal worker may leave a contracted job, but if so he will have to leave the country and go through a one-year cooling off period out of the U.S.
And, I was right in my assumption that its "triggers" for the amnesty would be based on spending and planning and such rather than a reduction in the number of illegal aliens; see the end of this post.
There are two visas involved: the "Y Visa" for a new "guest" worker scheme, and the "Z Visa" for current illegal aliens, giving them legal working permission.
* The Y Visa is further broken down into a "main program" ("In U.S. 2 years, then 6 months at home, 2 renewals") and a "seasonal program" ("9 months in U.S./3 months at home, indefinitely renewable").
* The Z Visa (which I'll call the "legal permanent underclass" visa) is indefinitely renewable, and requires a fine of $2000 at every three-year renewal mark, together with a payment of $1500 for a total of $3500 every three years.
From the U.S. News report:
[U.S. News reporter Angie C. Marek] says the new plan has made a lot of the White House's former allies in the immigrant-advocacy community mighty unhappy. Temporary guest workers in this plan would have a tough time getting any sort of citizenship. Under the visa program outlined by the White House, workers can stay in the United States for two years, at which point they'll have to return home for six months, a process that can be repeated two times.And, from this:
The fee to gain citizenship for immigrants currently in the country illegally would also jump from a proposed $2,000 to about $10,000.
Tom Snyder, national political director of the union UNITE Here, compared the measure with a "21st-century version of the Bracero program" in a conference call with reporters today. And Laura Reiff, cochair of the Essential Worker Immigration Coalition, a business group that worked with the White House last year on the guest-worker proposals, called the measure "entirely unworkable."
"For us it's a no go," said Angela Kelley, deputy director of the advocacy group National Immigration Forum...I guess the people the White House was trying to impress don't want to reciprocate the Bush administration's affection.
"President Bush said family values don't stop at the Rio Grande. Evidently they do," said Kevin Appleby, director of Migration and Refugee Policy for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops...
Family unification, said [Teddy Kennedy], "has been an essential aspect of immigration policy since the history of this country" and letting immigrants work their way toward legalization is a framework for previous immigration bills that has received substantial support.
"You don't compromise on the morality of these issues," Kennedy said. "We're not going to."
UPDATE: More unhappy campers don't reciprocate their affection (seiu.org/media/pressreleases.cfm?pr_id=1384):
"SEIU is alarmed by the White House's proposed immigration reform plan which fails to address any of the key elements needed to pass practical, humane solutions to the current broken system. Taking a major step away from our nation's values and our history as a nation of immigrants, the White House plan would make inequality – rather than opportunity – the centerpiece of our immigration system and deny basic rights to our hardest workers."