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Hillary Clinton Takes Stance on Immigration

The 2016 presidential race is heating up and candidates are scrambling to court voters by drawing clear lines on immigration. On Tuesday, Hillary Clinton announced she supports a full path to citizenship for immigrants during a talk at Rancho High School in Las Vegas.

Hillary Clinton is Pro-Immigration Reform

Hillary Clinton
Photo Credit: Ethan Miller / Getty

The Democratic candidate is a strong supporter of comprehensive immigration reform and announced her supportof paving a “full and equal path to citizenship” for undocumented people living in the United States.

“We can’t wait any longer for a path to full and equal citizenship,” Clinton said at Rancho High School, adding: “Now, this is where I differ with everybody on the Republican side.”

Where does she stand compared to other candidates?


READ: Hillary Clinton vs. Marco Rubio: Their Social Media Report Cards

Jeb Bush Supports a Path to “Legal Status”

Hillary Clinton Jeb Bush
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Bush believes in a path to legal status, but not citizenship – although he’s said he would consider putting citizenship on the table if there’s enough support for it. Bush’s plan: those seeking legal status must prove themselves in the eyes of the law. If you are already here, be prepared to pay fines and taxes, work and learn English.

“You pay your fines, you get provisional work permits, where you come out of the shadows, you pay taxes, you pay fines, you don’t receive government assistance, you learn English, you don’t commit crimes,” Bush said during a talk at the Club for Growth in Florida.

Bush’s current immigration stance has encountered resistance from many conservatives.

Ted Cruz Believes in Tightening Border Control

Hillary Clinton Ted Cruz
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Republican Ted Cruz was the first Latino candidate to announce a run for the presidency and without missing a beat, immigration advocacy groups gave him a big thumbs down. Cruz does not believe in citizenship for undocumented immigrants.

“Instead of the lawlessness and the president’s unconstitutional executive amnesty, imagine a president that finally, finally, finally secures the borders,” said Cruz during a speech at Liberty University. “And imagine a legal immigration system that welcomes and celebrates those who come to achieve the American Dream.”


READ: Reporter Questions Ted Cruz’s Cuban-ness

Marco Rubio Draws a Hard Line on Immigration

Hillary Clinton Marco Rubio
Photo Credit: Scott Olson / Getty

Marco Rubio, who once supported a DREAM Act plan, recently said undocumented immigrants do not a have a right to live in the U.S. Rubio says if elected, he would be willing to give undocumented immigrants with 10 years in the U.S. the option to pay a fine and go through a background check:

“What you would get is the equivalent of a non-immigrant, non-permanent work visa to be in the U.S. and you would have to be in that status for a significant period of time,” said Rubio in a talk at the NRI Summit, adding: “And at some point, if you choose, you could apply for permanent residency, but you’d have to do it through that modernized legal immigration system and you’d have to do it just like everybody else, not a special process or anything of that nature.”

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Trump Finally Gave The Green Light To Start The Transition But Many Immigration Policies Are Already Affected

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Trump Finally Gave The Green Light To Start The Transition But Many Immigration Policies Are Already Affected

JONATHAN NACKSTRAND/AFP via Getty Images

Ever since election night, President Trump has been sowing discord and disinformation while showing himself to be the big sore loser he always has been. Basically, he’s been showing his true colors.

But his actions have real consequences. As he instructs many in his administration to avoid any contact with President-Elect Biden’s transition team, he is doing damage to the peaceful transfer of power. He’s also risking the lives of hundreds of thousands of Americans as the country continues to struggle to fight the Covid-19 pandemic.

Now, his actions are impacting the future of immigration reform.

Trump has instructed his immigration department to avoid working with the Biden transition team.

As Trump’s General Services Administrator refuses to provide the Biden transition team with much-needed funds to begin preparing for office come January 20th, his immigration department is also keeping the transition team in the dark.

According to Buzzfeed News, an official that oversees US immigration and naturalization services told employees not to communicate with President-elect Joe Biden’s transition team until a Trump appointee “deems the results ‘clear’” and recognizes the winner.

”It’s disturbing and disheartening that the agency is not permitting staff to aid the Biden transition team to ensure a smooth transfer,” said one USCIS employee who spoke on condition of anonymity. “These delays could hamper the new administration’s ability to hit the ground running on important issues facing the agency and our country.”

But the transition delay has also caused concern among officials in other agencies, especially those responsible for dealing with the coronavirus pandemic.

As president, Biden plans to undo many of Trump’s immigration reforms.

Credit: Natalie Sounders / Getty Images

President-Elect Biden has made it very clear that we will govern very differently that his predecessor. One of the areas where he’s looking to truly separate himself from Trump is on immigration.

Already, the transition team has promised to unroll Donald Trump’s legacy on immigration, but it faces an uphill battle to make good on that promise.

When it comes to DACA, the administration plans to reinstate protections DREAMers, but also to expand protections for their health care and education. A threat to the DACA program is making its way through the courts, so the Biden camp is under pressure to act quickly to make good on its promise.

For Trump’s “Remain in Mexico” policy, Biden plans to bring that to an end as well. It is estimated that 20,000 migrants are waiting in northern Mexico in cities like Matamoros while seeking asylum in the U.S. But the exact number is not known for certain, in large part because the Department of Homeland Security has not yet shared such data with the Biden transition team.

Another big change would come in the form of revamping the country’s seasonal worker program. Biden wants to make it easier for both employers and workers to hire and find jobs while providing much-needed legal protections and fair pay to workers.

Biden has also committed to increase the number of refugees admitted to the U.S. annually to 125,000, a historic high and a dramatic increase from the historic low of 15,000 set by the Trump administration.

Biden can use executive action on many fronts but others will require congressional action.

Credit: JONATHAN NACKSTRAND/AFP via Getty Images

Although Biden can accomplish many of these immigration reforms through executive action, he’ll need to work with Congress to achieve many others.

His platform outlines larger goals to work on with Congress, such as increasing the number of employment-based visas, providing a path to legalization for the 12 million undocumented immigrants in the country and creating a new, decentralized immigration stream for foreign workers that is based on local employers’ needs as well as a new visa option for entrepreneurs. 

These plans will be contingent on which party controls the Senate—to be decided in January by two runoff elections in Georgia—and the course of the coronavirus pandemic, which continues to spike across the country, leaving millions of workers unemployed.

Dreamers are celebrating President-Elect Biden’s plans but remain cautious.

Credit: Steve Marcus / Getty Images

While they aren’t eligible to vote, DACA recipients found ways to harness their political power ahead of the election. And it very much worked.

Over the course of the campaign, many politicans – including President-Elect Joe Biden – made serious promises to the nation’s immigrant population. And Dreamers show up, so if promises were made but progress isn’t, then DREAMers aren’t afraid to go show up in someone’s office and say, ‘Hey, I thought you were on our side.’

“Those are promises that would literally change my life,” said Mariana Castro, 26, a DACA recipient from Peru living in a mixed-status family in Florida.

So although much of the stress and weight has been lifted off immigrant communities shoulders with the results of this election, so much work remains to be done.

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Federal Judge Rules Acting Of DHS Unlawfully Appointed, DACA Suspension Invalid

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Federal Judge Rules Acting Of DHS Unlawfully Appointed, DACA Suspension Invalid

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A federal judge ruled that Chad Wolf was illegally appointed a head of Department of Homeland Security (DHS). The announcement is a major win for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients. Earlier this year, the Supreme Court ruled that the Trump administration wrongly tried shutting down the DACA program.

A federal judge in New York delivered DACA recipients and advocates a major win.

After more than a year, Judge Nicholas Garaufis ruled that Chad Wolf was unlawfully appointed as acting head of DHS. The ruling invalidates a memo Wolf released on July 28 suspending new applications for DACA recipients. The judge ruled that Wolf was not lawfully appointed because President Trump did not appoint Wolf in accordance with the law.

It is another loss for the Trump administration after losing the presidential election.

Wolf’s memo directed at DACA affected million of young people trying to live, work, and go to school in the U.S. DACA recipients and activists have been fighting the federal government’s attack on the program for years. The Trump administration announced their first attempt to kill the program in September 2017.

People are celebrating the ruling for setting things right.

“Today’s decision is another win for DACA recipients and those who have been waiting years to apply to the program for the first time,” said Karen Tumlin, director and founder of Justice Action Center, in a statement. “After the June Supreme Court victory, the Trump administration was bound to reset the DACA program to its original terms from 2012. Rather than doing that, the Trump administration gutted the program again—locking out young people who had been waiting years to apply and severely curtailing the program for existing DACA recipients. DACA recipients and immigrant youth deserve more—much more.”

The case has exposed a lot of questionable moments in Wolf’s appointment.

A brief states that it appears that the DHS told the Department of Justice that things might be different than what was presented. The brief highlights that DHS’s claim that the person who appointed Wolf was himself appointed at a different time casting doubt on the series of events that led to Wolf’s confirmation by the Senate.

Attorneys are ready to help people renew and submit their DACA paperwork.

If you or someone you know needs help with their DACA paperwork and submitting paperwork, click here for a list of resources. You can also reach out to the Immigrant Legal Resource Center for help with your DACA needs.

READ: President Trump Falsely Claimed That Covid Is To Blame For Ending DACA

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