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Legal Status

CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 12, 2013 | By Cindy Chang, Los Angeles Times
In 1986, lawmakers decided the problem of illegal immigration had to be dealt with. More than 3 million people were living in the United States after crossing the border illegally or overstaying their visas. A new law signed by President Ronald Reagan gave legal status and a path to citizenship to most of those unauthorized residents - helping many secure a slice of the American dream but also giving fuel to critics who sought to turn "amnesty" into a pejorative. Less than 30 years later, the number of immigrants living in the country illegally is thought to have nearly quadrupled, and the freighted baggage of amnesty looms over new efforts to reform the nation's immigration laws.
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OPINION
May 14, 2013 | By The Times editorial board
The Senate Judiciary Committee is just beginning its markup of the bipartisan immigration bill, but already opponents and supporters of the sweeping legislation are fighting over which immigrants should be allowed to legalize their status and which should be deported. Clearly it makes sense to refuse legal status to immigrants who have been convicted of serious crimes. But some lawmakers, including Sen. Charles E. Grassley (R-Iowa), are backing a provision that goes too far, excluding immigrants who have no criminal history simply because their names appear in a database of gang members or on a gang injunction.
NATIONAL
July 26, 2011 | By Peter Nicholas, Washington Bureau
President Obama defended his deportation policies and said Republicans remain an obstacle to overhauling the immigration system to give illegal immigrants a pathway to legal status. Speaking at a conference of Latino leaders Monday, Obama said that he and fellow Democrats are working to enact laws that would resolve the status of about 11 million immigrants living in the U.S. illegally. Obama's comments seemed aimed at defusing criticism that he has not done enough to change immigration law. When he ran for office in 2008, Obama said he would deal with the issue in his first year.
NATIONAL
December 21, 2010 | By Peter Nicholas and Brian Bennett, Washington Bureau
President Obama and Latino lawmakers agreed Tuesday that chances are dimming for passage of an immigration overhaul that would provide a path to legal status for millions of illegal residents, according to people familiar with the private session. Instead, the president and members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus concurred that, until after the 2012 election, a more realistic goal would be to stave off legislation targeting illegal immigrants. That said, Obama told the group, he was not giving up on an immigration overhaul, which he promised to accomplish during his 2008 presidential campaign.
NEWS
August 25, 2001 | EDWIN CHEN, TIMES STAFF WRITER
President Bush said Friday that his plan to help Mexican and other illegal immigrant workers acquire legal status will not shortchange those "who have been waiting in line legally." The president gave that assurance as he also flatly dismissed--with considerable ardor--any suggestion that his immigration reform package is driven by a desire to woo the growing Latino voting population, whose support is key to his political fortunes.
NATIONAL
November 17, 2012 | By Brian Bennett and Lisa Mascaro, Washington Bureau
WASHINGTON - Latino voters' decisive tilt toward Democrats in the presidential election has given new life to proposals that would clear a path to legal status for the estimated 11 million people in the U.S. unlawfully. For the first time in five years, some soul-searching Republicans are calling on the GOP to change its tone and embrace ways to ease the law to keep families together while intensifying efforts to tighten the borders. "For too long, both parties have used immigration as a political wedge issue," Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart (R-Fla.)
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 20, 2009 | By Teresa Watanabe
On the plaza of Dolores Mission Church, long a sanctuary for illegal immigrants, a Roman Catholic priest asked the question that has hovered in the minds of so many of the city's migrants since Charlie Beck was appointed Los Angeles police chief. Flanked by parishioners holding flickering votive candles in the cool evening air, Father Scott Santarosa asked Beck whether he could assure community members that they will not be asked about their immigration status if they report a crime. " Sí," Beck said, drawing laughs and applause from the crowd.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 8, 2010 | Hector Tobar
Just about any way they look at it, Meg Whitman comes off badly to the moms I met at the Brentwood Country Mart. Most of them are lifelong professionals like Whitman, with kids grown up and in college. And, like her, they've lived many years with Spanish-speaking immigrant women working in their homes. They don't quite believe Whitman when she says she didn't know that her longtime domestic, Nicandra Diaz Santillan, was an undocumented immigrant. And if the billionaire and GOP candidate for governor is being honest ?
OPINION
July 2, 2013 | By Helen B. Marrow and Tomás R. Jiménez
Now that the Senate has passed its immigration bill, the future of reform lies in the hands of the GOP-led House, where the debate will center on allowing a path to citizenship for 11 million immigrants living in this country without legal status. Opponents of this path often claim that low-skilled Mexicans, who make up the largest subgroup, are not fitting into U.S. society - that they don't want to assimilate and are fated to remain a permanent underclass. Solid evidence suggests these claims are untrue.
NATIONAL
June 28, 2010 | By Ken Dilanian and Anna Gorman, Los Angeles Times
Early one morning in March, two Chicago-area brothers were dozing on an Amtrak train when it stopped in Buffalo, N.Y. A pair of uniformed Border Patrol agents made their way through the car, asking passengers if they were U.S. citizens. No, the vacationing siblings answered honestly, with flat, Midwestern inflections: We're citizens of Mexico. And so it was that college students Carlos Robles, 20, and his brother Rafael, 19 — both former captains of their high school varsity tennis team — found themselves in jail, facing deportation.
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