Good News and Bad News, and more Histrionics

Good news first – Writing for the Cato Institute, Alex Nowrasteh, who we took to task on our blog for deliberately distorting the FAIR Congressional Task Force candidate immigration pledge, has been stung into trying to deflect our criticism. In his attempt to do so he cites FAIR’s critique of the current legal immigration system.

The bad news is that Nowrasteh disingenuously equates FAIR’s proposed ending of “chain migration” (ending the entitlement of immigrants who become U.S. citizens to sponsor their siblings and other family members) with being opposed to legal immigration in general – which is totally false. His original swipe at FAIR’s pledge clearly implied that the pledge was against all legal immigration, not just chain migration.

Once again, we suggest that Mr. Nowrasteh familiarize himself with the recommendations of the U.S. Commission on Immigration Reform [aka the Jordan Commission]. If he does his homework, he will find that it recommended – with only one dissent – that U.S. immigration law be restructured to eliminate the visa preference entitlement for siblings and adult children that constitute chain migration. FAIR supported the Jordan Commission recommendations, many of which reflected long-standing positions of FAIR, and we continue to share the view of the Commission that those recommendations are in the long-term interests of the nation.

About Author


Jack, who joined FAIR’s National Board of Advisors in 2017, is a retired U.S. diplomat with consular experience. He has testified before the U.S. Congress, U.S. Civil Rights Commission, and U.S. Commission on Immigration Reform and has authored studies of immigration issues. His national and international print, TV, and talk radio experience is extensive (including in Spanish).


  1. avatar
    Rex Whitmer on

    I live in Arizona, on the border with Mexico. I used to go to Mexico very frequently to shop and for family outings. I am pretty much at ease with Spanish speakers and having been raised in a school that was about fifty fifty Mexican. In those days as today, parents south of the border have relatives on the north side, and send their kids to school as if they live at that address. Though it costs money, the school board apparently doesn’t mind the expense, possibly because there is a broad range of relationship there. The town on the opposite side of our border has a population far exceeding the relatively small town on the north side, so merchants here and up through Tucson favor easy access for Mexican Nationals to come here.

    Until the US began to Socialize itself, illegal crossings of the border were temporary things. They would cross the border, find a job and work for a time, send money home and then go home for a visit and would often reserve their job for when they would return again. Since we have become a “welfare” state, the illegal crossers have found that they are able to stay here, bring families up to great grandfathers across, send their children to school here, get better medical care, get help with rent and utilities and food and they don’t even have to work, if they don’t want to. If caught, they are generally released in time to be home for supper!

    The problem with this is that many American citizens feel the same way, so tax revenues have dropped drasticly. American employers are now seeing the illegals as potential workers. These people now feel like this is their country and they have no intention of leaving it, and they also feel that they have the right to vote, and do so where ever they can get by with it! Many are being encouraged by political leaders to do so, and in barrios it is often hard if not impossible for a citizen to enter the polls!

    Now, both parties have reason to make gestures towards illegal immigration, but they only stir the puddle, making inadequate laws and procedures. I am friends with several border patrol agents who agree that their jobs have them ham strung as to doing what they are paid to do, and they are not happy with the results. We recently had a case where illegals were throwing rocks at a patrolman (not pebbles, rocks capable of serious injury or death) he pulled his weapon and fired killing the thrower. This isn’t a common thing, but it happens. Drugs pass into the country almost unhindered. We have drug dealers living like kings in Mexico off of American dollars! It’s not uncommon to find rooms stacked with $100 bills. And when it comes down to it, some of them live here in the US!

    Now then, when I see once again, a Border Patrol with power to hold or imprison criminals, to send them back for punishment even though they haven’t violated here yet. When I see, as I saw for a time at the beginning of this so called recession, of caravans of illegals with vehicles loaded with furniture and belongings packed every which way as they head south, then I’ll know that you and others of your kind are doing their job; not just extracting dollars from frustrated American Citizens such as myself and making show of their efforts.

    • avatar

      unless you are 150 years old you are correct BUT most of the illegals work and the difference is that in 1997 or so tCOngress enacted the 3-10 year bar……….SO now they stay………… that Law is a stupid Law…………..that created more illegals to stay in the US

  2. avatar

    If you read Nowrasteh’s original column, much of it was the usual “we might as well tear down the Statue of Liberty” variety. Ignoring of course the fact that it’s an apples and oranges comparison. He notes that there was open immigration in the 19th century. But even WITH that, total immigration per decade for the 1880s was 5.2 million, and 3.6 for the 1890s. In no other decade did it exceed three million total per decade. Compare that with the 10 million average for each of the last two decades.

    Ignored also is the fact that at times a large portion of immigrants eventually returned to their home countries because it was simply harder than they thought it would be. There was no coming here and having the taxpayers support your US born children. [which is another reason to outlaw birthright citizenship, besides the fact that it’s hard to believe that the authors of the 14th amendment meant for children to become citizens by the illegal act of their parents. Children born to invading armies are not eligible.]

    And the biggest factor is that we did not reach a population of 100 million until 1915. We no longer have the cheap land and cheap water that fueled growth. We no longer are a labor intensive society, not with outsourcing of jobs and technology replacing other jobs.

  3. avatar

    The Democrats Left “Real Liberals for the Legal Americans” After Congressman Jordan (D) Passed Away

    They left me, I didn’t leave the real liberals for a sane immigration system… now seems the Democrat aim is to take the New Deal [Social Security] away from Legal Americans and give it to IAs and foreigners as FREE WELFARE….boy, have they gone Fascist in my book….LOL

    • avatar

      You right and wrong, Dems support illegals for two reason, send to vote illegal and flood of Mexican USA for still in powers.