Home Security Reforming Immigration Reform Homeland Security Capstone Project

  • Length: 10 pages
  • Sources: 8
  • Subject: American History
  • Type: Capstone Project
  • Paper: #54715654

Excerpt from Capstone Project :

Home Security Reforming Immigration Reform

Homeland Security Reforming Immigration Reform

In current years illegal immigration has turned out to be a topic that has brought up some significant political issues in the United States. A lot of the debate on illegal immigration emphases on a feasible route to United States citizenship. It would need to be pointed out that there are so many more persistent subjects which should be spoken about in regards to the illegal immigration discussion. Some are arguing that illegal immigrants that are without health insurance are costing American tax payers billions of dollars annually. Some even believe that most are wearing out their welcome and staying way past their due time. This paper talks about a reforming the immigration reform in order to bring more restriction and organization.

Reforming Immigration Reform

Problem Definition

In what could arguably have been the shot heard around the world during the 2012 election year, President Obama in June issued an executive order suspending deportations of low-priority undocumented immigrants under the age of 30 (Office of the Press Secretary, 2012). The order targeted young Hispanics who had been brought to the United States by their parents years ago, the so-called 'Dreamers.' During the rest of the campaign, Obama spent considerable time courting the minority vote based on the assumption that his position on immigration reform would be more appealing to Hispanic voters than his opponent's (Boyer, 2012). His gamble seems to have paid off.

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is at the heart of the debate over immigration reform, since federal policies that control paths to citizenship, border security, and deportations of illegal immigrants are mediated by DHS agencies. These agencies include Customs & Border Protection, Citizenship & Immigration Services (CIS), the Coast Guard, and Immigration & Customs Enforcement (ICE) (DHS, 2012).

A recently released report from the Migration Policy Institute highlighted the effects of a de facto "enforcement first" immigration policy that has emerged in the federal government (Meissner, Kerwin, Chishti, and Bergeron, 2013). The primary components of this policy are border security, visa controls, data collection, workplace purges, detention, deportation, and establishing close ties with the criminal justice system. The authors of this report argue that the primary policy question facing the public, given the massive expansion of the immigration enforcement machinery over the past decade, is whether these resources are being well spent. The reason for this concern is the discovery that the money being spent on immigration enforcement amounts to more than the federal government spends on all other law enforcement activities combined.

Given the massive spending on immigration enforcement and the questionable efficacy of this informal policy to address immigration problems (Editors, 2013), especially with the on-going budget crisis, it seems important to shift immigration policy away from enforcement in favor of a viable path to citizenship and the establishment of a work visa program.

Research Process and Literature Discussion

Several different types of sources will be examined for suggestions on how to create a viable path to citizenship for different types of immigrants and establish a work visa program. These sources will include legislative bills, academic studies, and opinion pieces published in periodicals. For example, former Florida governor Jeb Bush published an opinion piece on illegal immigration in the Wall Street Journal recently (Bush and Clint, 2013).

Since public support is essential to this process, the relevant survey data will also be examined to see if there is any support for the policies that have been suggested in the past. For example, a recent survey by the Associated Press revealed that public opinion has shifted considerably in the past four years to favor a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants (AP-GfK, 2013).

Several recent large studies have been recently published that address the problem of illegal immigration. In addition to the report mentioned above by the Migration Policy Institute, the Pew Hispanic Center released a report last year that examined immigration trends from Mexico (Passel, Cohn, and Gonzalez-Barrera, 2012). Insights into the immediate needs of immigrants should be found in these types of resources.

History shows that a briefing for the immigration quota system was called the Immigration Act of 1924, and this policy was set in place in order to put some restrictions on the amount of immigrants that were allowed to come into the country. During that time there was about 2% of the number of people from that nations who were already living in the United States. From the years between the 1930s and 1980s, yearly admissions started to rise. During the years of world Wars I and II, the United States had permitted some temporary workers to avoid labor deficiencies that had been caused by Americans that were serving in the military.

One of these programs was called the 'bracero' program, which was established during the years of 1942 and 1964. Throughout this time, some 5.5 million Mexicans had been brought over to legally work on U.S. farms (Freeman, 2012). In the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965 quotas were founded on national origins had been done away. In its place, both yearly shares had been based on the area of source and family programs that did not have many restrictions were also adopted. The latter contained of U.S. residents that had been petitioning the U.S. government to allow their family members to become residents. These kinds of migrants signify the biggest subsection of total refugees.

Sometime during 1952, the border control had been expanded, permitting the agents to board and search transportation for illegal immigrants anyplace in the United States. Now, for the first time, illegal entrants that had been traveling inside the nation were subject to seizure (Loue, 2009) This had something to do with another huge rise in anxieties as the INS started recording some 900,000 in 1954 (Martin, 2007). There were other responses to illegal immigration that had been initiated in 1954 when the INS was brought on the scene called "Operation Wetback." (Davila, 2012) at this time, some 2,000 federal agents, were put in place to start getting rid of the immigrants, from the Southwest in an operation that would last less than one year (Loue, 2009). Siegel, Jacobs, & Von Brook (1989) all debated that the enforcement activities of the operation, "Led as a military operation, 'Operation Wetback' came up from California east to Texas, and utilized all sorts of means to make sure that they were not allowing and migrants to come into the U.S. unsupervised. They did everything from spotter planes to finding illegal aliens, military jeeps in order to seize the Mexicans and then have them all transported by planes to airlift them back to Mexico" (p. 77).

Loue, (2009) assessed the effectiveness of numerous migration policies that comprised of g policies geared at border control and observing the hiring practices of employers. Putting the focus on U.S. states that border with Mexico, were a top priority and they watched these areas like a hawk. These enforcement utilized things such as a vector auto regression econometric model to evaluate how border enforcement impacts and is influenced by ages (Freeman, 2012).

They came to the conclusion that current laws are incorrectly enforced and also made the suggestion that the not having good effectiveness of the recent rules could possibly reflect political demands from businesses to continue to allow illegal migration of workers in order to alleviate pressures from the job market. (Davila, 2012) made the assumption that the relative talents that the immigrants were bringing into the country was actually declining compared to pre-war waves of immigrants. Borjas (1994) makes the argument that recent migration waves have contributed in welfare services more powerfully than preceding waves, and that this is probable to have had an opposing economic influence. He made the suggestion that changes towards an immigration policy that favors highly skilled migrants is the answer to the problem, ever since skilled workers have higher earnings and are less probable to need public assistance services.

Freeman (2012) also gave an evaluation that involved the long-term effects of restrictions to the supply and demand of undocumented immigrants that are living in the U.S. economy. They utilize a model that is considered to be some dynamic applied general equilibrium design called USAGE-M. Fewer migrants that are documented (29% reduction), irrespective of supply or demand shocks, decrease the extent of the economy in the year of 2019 by 2.5%, a $200 billion decrease in U.S. GDP. Founded on a welfare standard, the authors favor the utilization of demand side rules geared at fining and taxing employers that employ undocumented migrants to control undocumented migration; versus monitoring migration with supply side rules for instance border control (Orchowski, 2009).

The reasons for this conclusion derives from the idea that the gathering of fines and taxes by the U.S. .government transfer revenue to the legal residents in that comes in the form of tax breaks or higher public spending; whereas supply side policies for instance border control do…

Cite This Capstone Project:

"Home Security Reforming Immigration Reform Homeland Security" (2013, February 12) Retrieved January 21, 2017, from

"Home Security Reforming Immigration Reform Homeland Security" 12 February 2013. Web.21 January. 2017. <

"Home Security Reforming Immigration Reform Homeland Security", 12 February 2013, Accessed.21 January. 2017,