I am writing to intimate you with the bill that is currently in
Congress. Below is the information and the suggested avenue of calling
Remember, everyu call counts; you don't have to be an American to
call. Onec you reside in a state and pay taxes, you have the right to
voice your opinion. Internationals students can call congress also. I
want everyone to keep this in mind: If passed, this bill goes into effect
180 days later. WE SHALL ALL BE AFFECTED! NO ESCAPE FOLKS!
Please think through what the bill is proposing; in many ways, it hurts
If you have any questions, I can be reached at
I hope you support this bill. Please read on!
CALL CONGRESS TO DEFEND IMMIGRATION!!!
Monday, September 18
Tuesday, September 19
CALL (202) 224-3121
(the capitol switchboard)
1) Ask for Members of Congress from your area, as well as House leaders of
both parties. Make as many calls as you can.
2) Tell whoever answers the phone you are unhappy with the Smith Bill,
H.R. 2202 (formerly 1915), and want to register you concerns.
3)Request the Member¹s support for one or two positions you feel most
strongly about (keep it simple so that the message gets through):
Examples: Split the bill - Congress should deal with immigration
enforcement issues first, and not unfairly blame legal immigrants and
refugees for public perceptions about illegal immigration by cutting
Don¹t reduce family immigration - strong family bonds are more
important than ever, and cuts in family reunification will hurt American
Don¹t unfairly burden employers - employment based immigration
should not be cut, U.S. companies need certain foreign expertise to remain
competitive in the global marketplace;
Rescue refugees - the U.S. should continue to stand up for human
rights by protecting refugees fleeing religious and political persecution;
Retain due process and discretionary relief - suspension of
deportation, judicial review, and full and fair asylum hearings should be
retained to provide protection and relief to those who deserve and need
No national ID system or card - a national identification system
will not stop illegal immigration, but its implementation will be a
nightmare for American workers and employers;
No Secret tribunals - secret tribunal hearing secret evidence have
no place in a democratic United States.
Below are outlined the various arguments why this bill should be resisted.
Thanks for your support:
ON DUE PROCESS AND RELIEF IN H.R. 2022
(FORMERLY H.R. 1915)
€Refugees should not be summarily excluded from the United States: H.R.
2022 allows expedited exclusion without a hearing for anyone arriving in
the U.S. who is considered inadmissible, with the provision of a ³credible
fear² screening for those seeking asylum, but no judicial review. Such a
provision is costly, burdensome, unconstitutional and unnecessary in light
of recent asylum reform. Attorney General Reno has testified that the
so-called ³airport asylum problem² has been largely solved, and that
present asylum system can efficiently deal with incoming cases.
€Arbitrary time limits should not be imposed on asylum applicants: H.R.
2022, as amended by Mr. McCollum, would impose an arbitrary time limit
within which a refugee would be required to file for asylum. Refugees
fleeing persecution often enter the United States unsure of their rights
or of the availability of asylum, and ignorant of the asylum process or of
agencies where they may obtain information and assistance. To expect a
traumatized woman fleeing rape in Bosnia to submit a ³notice of intent² to
file within 30 days of entering the U.S. and to complete an application
within another 30 days, flies in the face of the reality of her situation
and of the long waits at legal services agencies for pro bono assistance.
€Suspension of deportation is a discretionary form of relief that protects
innocent family members: H.R. 2022 eliminates relief from deportation in
the form of ³suspension and deportation² and creates a new relief. For
example, anyone who entered the U.S. without inspection, or entered on a
B, F, J, or M visa would be barred from seeking this relief. Present
³suspension² relief is used to ameliorate the harsh effect of deportation
on U.S. citizen children, parents and spouses, requires a showing of
extreme hardship and good moral character, is discretionary, and is
granted by immigration judges in fewer than 2,000 cases per year. This
relief should be retained.
€A new 10 year ban to admissibility is overly punitive and will punish
innocent U.S. citizens: H.R. 2022 creates a new bar to admissibility that
will require persons present unlawfully in the U.S. for an aggregate of 12
months to remain outside the U.S. for 10 years before being eligible for
any immigration benefit. A child who was brought in unlawfully by a
parent, who years later married a U.S. citizen, would be forced to leave
the U.S. for 10 years before the spouse could petition for him/her. Such
a result has a unduly harsh impact on U.S. citizens who current waiver
provisions are designed to protect. This provision should be eliminated,
or a waiver provided for spouses and children of U.S. citizens and lawful
€Secret evidence/secret tribunals have no place in a democracy: H.R. 2022
creates a new secret tribunal that can use secret evidence to deport
so-called ³alien terrorists² who have not been accused or convicted of
breaking any law whatsoever. Such a provision is unprecedented,
unnecessary and unconstitutional. The INS has never shown that it has
been unable to deport a real ³terrorist² for lack of a secret tribunal.
Similar provisions in pending counterterrorism legislation should also be
deleted or modified with due process protections consistent with U.S.
ON EMPLOYMENT/LABOR ISSUES IN H.R. 2022
€Do not reduce visa numbers for employment-based immigrants: H.R. 2022
directly removes 5,000 employment-based visas. It also, however
eliminates an additional 27,500 employment-based visas to make up
differences in excess family admissions. Reducing work/business visas
will create significant backlogs for many employment-based categories,
including professionals, causing significant difficulties for the U.S.
companies who rely on these individuals.
€Eliminate the rigid experience requirements for professional and skilled
workers. In key industries, the most critical advances require
individuals with cutting-edge knowledge. Imposing arbitrary experience
requirements makes it impossible for companies and institutions in these
areas to obtain the skills they need at the time they are needed. The
stated purpose of such requirements -- to give U.S. workers equal or
better access to the same jobs -- is already met thorough testing of the
labor market that must take place before these individuals can be hired.
€Reinstate the priority category in the first employment-based preference
for outstanding professors and researchers. U.S. employers and academic
institutions compete globally for the best and brightest of these
individuals, who provide essential expertise to keep our research at the
forefront of many diverse fields. This not only assist our companies
maintain American dominance in technologies, but ensures that our students
will continue to be exposed to the most advanced theories in cutting-edge
areas. The current process only exempts employers from costly labor
certification processes; the individuals must still pass rigorous
regulatory muster to be considered outstanding.
€Reinstate the waiver from labor certification for those whose immigration
is found to be ³in the national interest.² U.S. employers should not be
arbitrarily required to undertake labor certification where the
immigration of an advanced degree professional is so obviously in our
national interest as to be certified as such. INS¹s recently promulgated
regulations to limit further the activities that can constitute the
national interest and the types of individuals that can qualify for the
category should be tested, not made obsolete.
€Employers need a program for temporary professional workers which they
can follow with certainty and which punishes abusers: U.S. employers need
to have clear rules on their use of the H-1B temporary professional with
which they can comply, and protection when they are in such compliance.
Employers who are not ³dependent² on H-1B nonimmigrants should have an
accessible, streamlined process not dependent on unnecessary regulations.
On the other hand, those who abuse the program should be subject to even
greater restrictions and even punishment.
ON FAMILY ISSUES IN H.R. 2022 (FORMERLY 1915)
€U.S. citizens should be able to unite with, children and parents: H.R.
2022 creates a cap of 3330,000 on family immigration. The cap would
create immediate backlogs for spouses and minor children of lawful
permanent residents, and would create backlogs for, and even freeze within
three years, immigration by parents of U.S. citizens. This arbitrary
limit on the ability of U.S. citizens and lawful residents to unite with
immediate family members is unprecedented and should be removed.
€ The Smith Bill is not ³pro-family²: Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX) argues that
his bill is ³pro family² because it places a priority on the spouses and
children of U.S. citizens and legal residents. This argument skirts the
fact that the bill eliminates four of the current family immigration
categories, and that current law already provides a preference for spouses
and children of citizens and permanent residents.
€Children are still part of the family when they turn 21: H.R. 2022
completely eliminates immigration by unmarried and married adult children
of U.S. citizens and lawful residents. Immigration in these categories is
largely limited to about 75,000 per year. These preference categories
should be restored, even if spouses and minor children are given priority
over the adult children categories.
€U.S. citizens should not face insurmountable obstacles to uniting with
parents: H.R. 2022 restricts the ability of U.S. citizens to unite with
parents by limiting such immigration to 50,000, requiring that at least
50% of the children reside in the U.S. before a parent can be sponsored,
and imposing an unprecedented requirement of the purchase of health
insurance before parental immigration is allowed. These restrictions must
€Backlogs must be dealt with fairly and efficiently: H.R. 2022, as amended
by Mr. Bryant, devotes some visas to the reduction of the current 1.1
million backlog of spouses and children of lawful permanent residents.
Mr. Bryant¹s formula would result in 300,000 persons remaining in the
backlog at the end of five years, according to State Department
projection. This backlog must be resolved in a more efficient fashion
with additional numbers. In addition, there must be fairness for those
who have been in waiting in sibling and adult children backlogs, who will
be prevented from immigrating in spite of waiting lawfully for years.
€Restricting family immigration will have a negative impact on
employment-based immigration: The skilled immigrants that the Smith bill
purports to attract, those are sponsored by U.S. employers, may be
reluctant to come to the U.S. when they are prevented from bringing
dependent children, simply because the child has turned 21.
€Since when is America not big enough for the parents, spouses and
children of its citizens?: A recent CNN/USA Today poll shows that
immigrants come with strong family values and strong work ethic. These
are values we ought to be promoting, not undermining. It cheapens the
U.S. and everything we hold dear when we tell our own citizens that
America does not honor and value parents and children.
Again thank you very much for supporting the opposition to the Smith Bill.