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Immigration System

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OPINION
January 10, 2012
Immigration issues Re "Desperate for his past life," Jan. 8 This article highlights the astonishing lack of common sense in our immigration policies. Why is it so difficult for honest, hardworking people to come to this country legally? Any person should be able to walk into a U.S. embassy, apply for a visa, pass a background check and be admitted. Every few years, those admitted would have to check in with the government to demonstrate they've been employed and haven't gotten into trouble or been on welfare.
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NATIONAL
April 16, 2014 | By Brian Bennett and Christi Parsons
WASHINGTON - Obama administration officials are considering allowing bond hearings for immigrants in prolonged detention, officials said, a shift that could slow the pace of deportations because immigration courts expedite cases of incarcerated immigrants. Several thousand immigrants could be released from jails across the country if judges are allowed to hear their cases and grant bond, advocates say. The proposal is one of several being floated as the White House scrambles to ease the concerns of Latino groups and other traditional allies that have turned on President Obama in recent weeks.
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NATIONAL
August 7, 2009 | Anna Gorman
Pledging more oversight and accountability, the Obama administration announced plans Thursday to transform the nation's immigration detention system from one reliant on a scattered network of local jails and private prisons to a centralized one designed specifically for civil detainees.
OPINION
April 11, 2014
Re "The GOP's 2016 handicap," Opinion, April 9 and "Jeb Bush calls immigration an 'act of love,'" April 8 Illegal immigration is an "act of love," says Jeb Bush. My foot it is. Bush should tell that to those who obeyed the law to come to the United States, and to those around the world waiting to enter legally. They waited (or are waiting) patiently for years, even decades, to get their green cards, adhering to the much-maligned and supposedly "broken" immigration system.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 24, 2010 | By Teresa Watanabe, Los Angeles Times
On a recent afternoon, the head of the nation's legal immigration system opened himself to a cascade of complaints from more than 300 attorneys, immigrant advocates and others at a teleconference based at the Western regional headquarters of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services in Laguna Niguel. The visa process is arbitrary and inconsistent, he was repeatedly told. The forms are obtuse, the demands for evidence excessive. The agency exudes a "culture of no" biased against visa petitions.
OPINION
April 7, 2013 | By Rafael Medoff
In May 1943, President Franklin Roosevelt met with British Prime Minister Winston Churchill at the White House. It was 17 months after Pearl Harbor and a little more than a year before D-Day. The two Allied leaders reviewed the war effort to date and exchanged thoughts on their plans for the postwar era. At one point in the discussion, FDR offered what he called "the best way to settle the Jewish question. " Vice President Henry Wallace, who noted the conversation in his diary, said Roosevelt spoke approvingly of a plan (recommended by geographer and Johns Hopkins University President Isaiah Bowman)
NEWS
September 16, 2001 | PATRICK J. McDONNELL, TIMES STAFF WRITER
How did they get in? That is the troubling question generated by revelations that foreign nationals successfully carried out terrorist attacks in the United States. Answers may be a while in coming. But calls are already emerging to tighten a system that critics say has two major failings: inadequate screening of visa-seekers and no permanent tracking of foreign visitors, many of whom remain illegally after their visas expire.
NATIONAL
May 21, 2013 | By Lisa Mascaro and Brian Bennett, Washington Bureau
WASHINGTON - A sweeping bipartisan plan to overhaul the nation's immigration system headed to the Senate floor after a key committee approved it Tuesday, setting the stage for a debate next month that could lead to the biggest victory for advocates of immigrant rights in a generation. The centerpiece of the legislation - a 13-year path to citizenship for many of the 11 million people now in the country without legal status - survived intact. But the bill's supporters accepted amendments that tilted it to the right to attract GOP backing, including some to toughen border security.
OPINION
September 3, 2010
The number of immigrants entering the United States illegally has plummeted in tandem with the economy, with the greatest slowdown occurring between 2007 and 2009, according to a report issued Wednesday by the nonpartisan Pew Hispanic Center. Also, the number of people apprehended at the border is down dramatically, and furthermore, an estimated 1 million illegal immigrants have left the country. But the report, coming as the immigration reform debate turns increasingly ugly, is a timely reminder of how perception lags reality.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 6, 2011 | Phil Willon, Los Angeles Times
Obama administration officials ventured to the Inland Empire on Saturday for a policy summit with Latinos, getting an earful from residents stung by the region's flattened economy and critical of Washington's failure to reform the nation's immigration system. The daylong meeting at UC Riverside, one of a series that have been held across the country, included free-flowing policy bull sessions and presentations by White House representatives touting President Obama's proposed jobs bills and record on healthcare, education funding and immigration.
OPINION
April 3, 2014
Re "Who should be deported?," Opinion, March 27 It's most telling that John Sandweg, a former head of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, excoriates the inhumanity of current ICE deportation policies. His piece should be required reading for all members of Congress who continue to dither over immigration reform. Sandweg's well-considered remarks bring to mind the hypocrisy of politicians comfortably ensconced in the pockets of big agriculture and big business. If ICE suddenly were to deport all undocumented immigrant workers, the howls from business and agricultural interests would be deafening.
OPINION
March 27, 2014 | By John Sandweg
President Obama recently directed Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson to examine U.S. immigration enforcement policies to see how the department can "conduct enforcement more humanely within the confines of the law. " The answer to the president's directive is surprisingly simple: Homeland Security's Immigration and Customs Enforcement division, known as ICE, should eliminate "non-criminal re-entrants and immigration fugitives" as a priority...
NEWS
March 13, 2014 | By Christi Parsons and Kathleen Hennessey
WASHINGTON - President Obama is directing top immigration officials to review U.S. deportation practices to see whether they can be carried out "more humanely" while still enforcing the laws on the books. In an evening meeting with Latino lawmakers, Obama said he still wanted to push a comprehensive immigration reform package but that, in the meantime, he had asked the head of the Department of Homeland Security to run an "inventory" of the agency's practices. Obama "emphasized his deep concern about the pain too many families feel from the separation that comes from our broken immigration system," White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said in a statement released after the meeting.
NEWS
February 14, 2014 | By Michael A. Memoli and Lisa Mascaro
CAMBRIDGE, Md. -- President Obama told House Democrats on Friday that his executive power to help immigrants who are in the U.S. without legal status is limited and urged them to keep pressing for legislation to overhaul the immigration system. "Don't take your foot off the pedal," the president said in remarks to a closed-door meeting of his Democratic allies, who were gathered for the party's annual issues retreat on the Eastern Shore. Hopes have substantially dimmed for immigration law changes this year after House Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio)
OPINION
February 5, 2014 | By The Times editorial board
House GOP leaders issued a set of standards last week for overhauling U.S. immigration law, but the ink had hardly dried on their one-page summary before conservatives starting pushing back - not against the leadership's ideas but against the idea of doing anything at all on such a controversial issue. Nevertheless, the House should press ahead. Resolving the many problems in the current system will only get harder if it misses the opportunity it has now. The leadership's standards represent an important shift in two areas.
NEWS
January 28, 2014 | By Brian Bennett and Daniel Rothberg
WASHINGTON -- President Obama urged Congress in his State of the Union speech to “fix our broken immigration system,” saying both political parties stood to gain by helping millions of undocumented immigrants get a legal foothold in America. “Independent economists say immigration reform will grow our economy and shrink our deficits by almost $1 trillion in the next two decades,” he said. “And for good reason: When people come here to fulfill their dreams - to study, invent and contribute to our culture - they make our country a more attractive place for businesses to locate and create jobs for everyone.” But Obama, aware that House Republicans won't appreciate any hectoring from him, didn't set out any legislative markers, including requiring a pathway to legal status and ultimately citizenship for the estimated 11 million people in the country illegally.
NATIONAL
April 23, 2013 | By Lisa Mascaro, Washington Bureau
WASHINGTON - On the third day of hearings on a bill to overhaul the immigration system, senators took a break from partisan sniping and grilled Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano on whether the Boston bombings had exposed shortcomings in the nation's immigration security apparatus. Conservative Republicans have tried to slow the Senate bill since two brothers, ethnic Chechens granted political asylum from Russia as minors with their family, were identified as the suspects in last week's bombings.
OPINION
March 31, 2013 | Raul Labrador, Rep. Raul Labrador, a Republican congressman representing Idaho's 1st District, has been pursuing immigration reform since his election to Congress
A consensus has been building about the need to reform and modernize our immigration system. While I am optimistic that Republicans, including "tea party" members, will support reform, it must be done right. We must create a system for the 21st century and beyond, one that honors the rule of law, provides a fair path for those seeking to come to the United States and fixes our broken borders. We must not fall prey to the mistakes made by earlier immigration reform efforts. An estimated 11 million or more undocumented people live in our country.
NATIONAL
November 29, 2013 | By Lisa Mascaro
WASHINGTON - Earlier this year, as House Republicans began considering changes to the nation's immigration laws after their party's defeat in the presidential election, they were given a list of do's and don'ts that updated GOP thinking on the issue. The suggestions seemed obvious to most but signaled a new tone for the Republican Party. "Don't use the term'anchor baby' or phrases like 'send them all back,'" said the memo from a Republican-aligned advocacy group, the Hispanic Leadership Network.
NEWS
November 29, 2013 | By Brian Bennett
WASHINGTON--President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama spoke for 30 minutes Friday with about 20 activists who are fasting at the steps of the Capitol to an effort to pressure House Republicans to overhaul immigration laws.  Three of the protesters, including labor leader Eliseo Medina, have not eaten in 18 days and are drinking only water.  Sitting with the group inside a heated tent, Obama told the fasters that he supported their...
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