• Sanctuary citiesSix years after first attempt, fight over anti-sanctuary cities bill has changed

    By Julián Aguilar

    Bills targeting “sanctuary cities” failed to pass the Texas Legislature in 2011 and 2015, but similar efforts this session have better chances of making it to Gov. Greg Abbott’s desk.

  • ImmigrationU.S. ends preferential treatment of Cuban migrants

    The Obama administration has decided to end a 20-year-old preferential treatment of Cuban immigrants – a policy known as Wet Foot, Dry Foot – which allowed most Cuban migrants who reached the United States – typically on boats – to receive a Green Card after one year. Ending the policy means that undocumented Cuban immigrants will from now be treated the same way as migrants from all other countries who enter the United States without proper papers.

  • ImmigrationNearly 500,000 immigrants deported from U.S. in 2016

    The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency reported that nearly half million immigrants were deported in 2016. The agency did not offer details about the nationalities of the deported immigrants. In all., 530,250 individuals were apprehended across the United States in 2016 – of which 450,954 were removed.

  • ImmigrationTrump’s immigration policies will pick up where Obama’s left off

    By Kevin Johnson

    In 2017, the Trump administration will likely continue and expand the Obama administration’s focus on removing immigrants convicted of crimes. Whether Trump will break ground for a wall along the U.S. border with Mexico is far less certain. To increase crime-based removals, the Trump administration will probably seek greater state and local assistance in federal immigration enforcement, but Trump is likely to encounter the same resistance that Obama did in working with state and local governments on immigration enforcement.

  • Undocumented immigrantsWorking the system is easy for undocumented immigrants

    By Travis Putnam Hill

    This is the economic and social reality in which millions of unauthorized immigrants find themselves: a country so reliant on cheap labor that substantial portions of the economy are built largely on the backs of immigrants willing to do work most Americans won’t, and for lower pay. An underground labor market provides abundant employment opportunities for undocumented immigrants in the United States. But working in the shadows often means accepting exploitation.

  • Sanctuary campusesAbbott vows to cut funding for "sanctuary campus" schools

    By Patrick Svitek

    Rebuking a growing movement aimed at protecting undocumented students under incoming President Donald Trump, Gov. Greg Abbott vowed Thursday to cut funding for any Texas school that declares itself a “sanctuary campus.” The definition of a “sanctuary campus” is murky, but Abbott  made it clear they are not welcome in Texas.

  • ImmigrationMexicans are migrating, just not across the U.S. border

    By Jeffrey H. Cohen and Bernardo Ramirez Rios

    Mexican migration to the U.S. is in decline. The Pew Hispanic Research Center has found that since 2009, more than one million native-born Mexicans living in the U.S. returned to Mexico. But many other Mexicans never crossed the U.S.-Mexican border in the first place. Why are some Mexican migrants choosing to stay home? What does it mean for the U.S. border with Mexico? The decline in migration to the U.S. is not simply linked to building more barriers at the border. Changing demography, economy, the difficulties of living in the U.S., and a growing sense of opportunity at home, among many other factors, are shifting Mexican migration to the U.S. Migrants balance risk and opportunity as they decide to move. Fostering the continued growth of those possibilities within Mexico, and the continued strengthening of the Mexican economy can help build a future without building a wall.

  • Immigration & the economyTrump’s immigration policy would push legal U.S. workers down the occupational ladder

    By Peter Dixon and Maureen Rimmer

    U.S. President-elect Donald Trump has proposed deporting millions of undocumented immigrants, and many voters appear to believe that deporting illegal immigrants would boost job opportunities and wages for U.S. workers. But our economic modelling suggests different conclusions. The eight million illegal workers currently in the U.S. workforce contribute to U.S. output. If all the illegal workers left the United States, our modelling found, then the U.S. economy would be 3 percent to 6 percent smaller. A smaller U.S. economy would need fewer workers in all occupations. The exception is farm laborers and construction workers: there would be fewer jobs overall in these occupations, but there would be more jobs for legal U.S. residents. This is because deporting illegal workers would open up vacancies. Moreover, in general terms, eliminating illegal workers from the U.S. workforce would change the structure of employment for legal workers away from skilled occupations towards low-skilled, low-wage occupations.

  • Border securityWith Trump in D.C., Texas might spend less on border

    By Jay Root and Julián Aguilar

    With a tight Texas budget session ahead in 2017, state legislators are already looking for every available dollar. Not having to spend $800 million on border security — the amount allocated in the previous two-year budget — would amount to a huge financial windfall at the state Capitol. Not counting federal funds, the Legislature spent about $114 billion in the last budget. If President-Elect Donald Trump delivers on his promise to dramatically beef up security on the U.S.-Mexico border, leading Texas lawmakers say they might quit spending so much state tax money on it.

  • Undocumented immigrantsNumber of undocumented immigrants in U.S. unchanged over the 2010-2016 period

    The issue of undocumented immigration has been central to the campaign of Donald Trump — and major motivation behind the surge of Hispanic voters supporting Hillary Clinton. The number of illegal immigrants crossing the U.S.-Mexico border may be too high than some Americans want, but experts point out that it has not risen in recent years. The numbers of unauthorized immigrant in the United States grew rapidly in the 1990s and early 2000s, but that trend changed with the onset of the financial crisis. The total number of Mexican immigrants in the United States is virtually unchanged over the 2010-2016 period.

  • Undocumented immigrantsCounting 11 million undocumented immigrants is easier than you think

    By Jennifer Van Hook

    News organizations widely report that there are 11 million unauthorized immigrants living in the United States. But where does this figure come from? Donald Trump has falsely asserted: “It could be three million. It could be 30 million. They have no idea what the number is.” In the third debate, Hillary Clinton said, “We have 11 million undocumented people. They [undocumented parents] have 4 million American citizen children. 15 million people.” The confusion is warranted – but demographers have figured out a simple and effective way to estimate the number of unauthorized immigrants.

  • Border wallTrump’s wall ignores the economic logic of undocumented immigrant labor

    By Lise Nelson

    Donald Trump portrays undocumented immigrants as invading “criminals” supported and abetted by the Mexican government is, and who pose a dire threat to the nation. Trump’s call for building a wall assumes that the cause of undocumented migration originates in Mexico, in the Mexican government, or in the criminal intent of migrants. A border wall makes intuitive sense if you assume the cause of undocumented migration is external to the United States. This is a belief that ignores not only the ease of breaching such a wall, but more fundamentally the economics of low-wage, undocumented labor migration that generated these flows in the first place.

  • RefugeesRich nations’ self-interest means refugee crisis will get worse, not better: Amnesty

    Wealthy countries have shown a complete absence of leadership and responsibility, leaving just ten countries, which account for less than 2.5 percent of world GDP, to take in 56 percent of the world’s refugees, said Amnesty International in a comprehensive assessment of the global refugee crisis published today. Amnesty says that the report sets out a fair and practical solution to the crisis based on a system that uses relevant, objective criteria to show the fair share every state in the world should take in in order to find a home for 10 percent of the world’s refugees every year.

  • RefugeesU.K. to spend £100 million to control immigration from Africa

    British prime minister Theresa May said in New York that more than £100 million of the U.K. foreign aid budget will be spent on returning Somali and other African refugees to their countries, and encouraging people escaping war zones not to cross the Mediterranean. May said that the principle guiding the government’s new approach to the refugee problem also applies to the question of Syrian refugees: It would be better to help a greater number of refugees at camps in countries bordering Syria than to resettle a smaller number in the United Kingdom.

  • European securityCalls for Hungary to be expelled from EU over refugee policy

    In a Tuesday interview with the German newspaper Die Welt, foreign minister of Luxembourg, Jean Asselborn, called for Hungary to be “temporarily, or in the worst case, permanently” excluded from the European Union. “We cannot accept that the basic values of the European Union are being massively violated,” Asselborn said. Hungary’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Peter Szijjarto reacted angrily, describing Asselborn as “an intellectual lightweight” and as a “sermonizing, pompous, and frustrated” individual whose actions would ultimately destroy Europe’s security and culture.