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Immigration Activists Suggest Primary Election Loss Should Speed Clock

Rarely does a single primary election for one seat in the House of Representatives where less than 75,000 voters cast ballots seem to have such large reverberations in the political realm. The recent defeat of House Majority Leader Eric Cantor in Virginia may shift the dynamics of the debate over comprehensive immigration reform.  Prior to the June 10, 2014 election, conventional wisdom in Washington DC suggested that, after Mr. Cantor vanquished his relatively unknown opponent in…

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Deportee Must Show Counsel Provided Ineffective Assistance Before Plea

The United States District Court in New York refused Charmaine Brown’s pro se plea for extraordinary relief seeking a vacation of her 2011 conviction for importation of a controlled substance with intent to distribute in violation of 21 U.S.C. § 841(a)(1). The Court, in Brown v. US, No. 11-cv-3443 (SLT). (Dist. Ct. ED NY 2014), rejected her writ of error coram nobisunder the All Writs Act, 28 U.S.C. § 1651(a) on the ground that she did not prove…

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Conference Of Bishops Gets Behind Immigration Reform

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops is lending its voice to the campaign for comprehensive immigration reform by urging Congress to pass such reform before it takes its annual August recess. "Our strength as a nation is drawn from our diversity and the unique talents of persons from around the world. Under our current immigration system, we weaken our country, not strengthen it. By not acting, we alienate a generation of young persons, who are the…

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Obama Orders Shelters Established For Children Separated From Parents At Border

A crush of unaccompanied children at border crossings across the southern border of the United States has prompted President Obama to order federal emergency authorities to respond to the developing humanitarian crisis. Children of undocumented aliens mostly from El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras have been found at border crossings.  Officials claim that over 47,017 children traveling without parents had been caught crossing the southwest border since October 1, 2013. The President tasked Craig Fugate, the head of…

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Hurdle Of Showing “changed Conditions Hampers Bid For Asylum

The First Circuit Court of Appeals denied relief to a Sri Lankan woman, Kumudinie Renuka Perera, who has repeatedly sought asylum in the United States on the grounds that she fears she will be persecuted if she is sent back to her home country. The federal appellate court, in review of a Board of Immigration Appeals decision denying her motion to reopen the case, found in Perera v. Holder, No. 13-1312. (Ct App. 1st Cir. 2014) that…

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Pentagon Plan To Provide Plan For Some Immigrants To Serve Country Put On Hold

The White House appears to have hit the pause button – at least for a few months - with respect to the revamping of a Department of Defense program, which would allow certain young immigrants to enlist in the military. The planned initiative, Military Accessions Vital to the National Interest (MAVNI), would allow those immigrants who meet the following requirements to serve in the military:  if they are doctors or have other advanced medical skills; or…

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Obama Administration Weighs New Limits On Deportations

As the White House awaits a recommendation from the Director of Homeland Security, Jeh Johnson, in response to President’s Obama’s request that Johnson provide him with his options for curtailing deportations of undocumented aliens, a debate has ensued concerning how much authority the President has to act without Congressional involvement and what political effect any actions he may take may in fact have. The concern among the President’s advisers stem from statements made by Republican members…

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Mental Illness Not A Basis For Asylum

The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed a decision that a person subject to removal from the United States cannot assert mental illness as a basis for seeking asylum in order to avoid being sent to one’s home country. In the appeal, Berisha v. Holder, No. 13-3490 (Ct. App. 6th Cir. 2014), Mark Vasel Berisha, a native and citizen of Albania, sought to have the ruling of Board of Immigration Appeal (BIA)- which itself upheld the Immigration…

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USCIS Issues Update On DACA Renewals

On April 9, 2014 the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) issued an update concerning DACA renewals.  DACA, or Deferred Action for Childhood Process, constitutes a procedure put in place in 2012 by the Obama Administration to address the issue of deportation of children who have spent most of their lives in the United States having been brought to the country through no fault of their own. DACA has been utilized by approximately 800,000 children. Those who…

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Qualifying For Release While Facing Removal

It was considered conventional wisdom that the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 ("IIRIRA") established that detention under this authority is mandatory, does not provide for the possibility of release on bond, and does not require that the Executive Branch at any time justify its conduct. But a ruling from the federal appellate circuit which reviews cases from district courts in New Jersey and neighboring states indicated in 2011 that, in some circumstances,…

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