Top Immigration Headlines: August 2012
Many of the top immigration headlines for August 2012 centered on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program since applications began to be accepted earlier in the month. But other related issues made their way into the headlines as well, including Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer’s executive order for the state to ignore certain parts of this program.
Elsewhere, a California man’s immigration status has so far prevented him from getting licensed to practice law, while Alabama school administrators were told they could not ask about student immigration statuses. At the same time, it was discovered that states have enacted fewer immigration laws this year compared to 2011.
According to Julian Crews and C. Hayes of WGN News, the start of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program caused thousands of people to line up at Chicago’s Navy Pier. Despite the number of people who pre-registered for the workshop, only about 1,500 could complete the application there since there were not enough volunteers to help everyone. About 1.7 million young illegal immigrants who meet certain qualifications will be able to take part in this program and avoid deportation.
Arizona is the focus of yet another immigration issue. According to an Associated Press article in the East Valley Tribune of Tempe, Ariz., Gov. Jan Brewer reiterated that she is against President Obama’s policy of letting the children of illegal immigrants avoid deportation. That’s why she has ordered that even if they qualify for the policy, they should not be allowed to get a driver’s license in Arizona. The order also strives to keep them from getting other benefits through the state. So far, it is unknown if the executive order is legal and can in fact be enforced.
Fox News Latino reported that Alabama schools can no longer check to see if new students are citizens before they enroll. Previously, the state’s immigration law allowed administrators to verify that students were here legally, but that policy has caused many students to withdraw from school or fail to enroll in the first place. Now that this part of the immigration law has been ruled unconstitutional, many students have enrolled in school again.
According to an Associated Press article that appeared in the Las Vegas Review-Journal, a California man is fighting to get his license to become a lawyer. He is an illegal immigrant since his parents brought him here as a child from Mexico, but he has managed to get a law degree and pass the State Bar of California. The Supreme Court needs to hear arguments about why this man should get his license to practice law despite not being a citizen.
Mark Rockwell of Government Security News reported that studies show a decline in immigration bills initiated by states. The amount of such bills is down by 20 percent compared to this time last year, and this is reportedly because everyone was waiting for the Supreme Court’s ruling on the constitutionality of certain immigration bills, such as the Arizona v. United States ruling. Budget issues were also likely to blame for the pause regarding state immigration bills. The statistics show that 206 immigration bills were enacted by states at the beginning of this year, compared to 257 in 2011.
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