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Bloggings: February 14, 2008

by Greg Siskind

Editor's note: Here are the latest entries from Greg Siskind's blog.

February 13, 2008

HOUSE HOLDS HEARING ON VISAS FOR FOREIGN SCHOLARS AND STUDENTS

The Subcommittee on Research and Science Education of the House Committee on Science and Technology held hearings last week on visa problems facing foreign students and scholars. The witness testimony is now posted on the Subcommittee's web site.

February 12, 2008
EB-3 NUMBERS JUMP THREE YEARS

The March Visa Bulletin has been released and there's good news for people in the EB-3 category. Those with priority dates after January 1, 2005 can now complete processing, a jump of three years. Why is this happening? Here's the DOS explanation:

The cut-off date movement for March in several Employment categories has been greater than those experienced in recent months.  Advancement of the cut-off dates at this time should prevent a situation later in the fiscal year where there are large amounts of numbers available but not enough time to use them. If the expected increase in CIS number use materializes, future cut-off date movements could slow or stop.

For those who were not able to submit adjustment cases last summer because they were waiting on a labor certification to be approved, this will be welcome news. And some of the folks who filed last summer who had old priority dates could find their cases getting finished a lot sooner than they expected.

February 11, 2008
HOUSE DEMS TO PUSH FOR SCALED BACK IMMIGRATION REFORM

Apparently, House Democrats are thinking along the same lines as I wrote a few days back and will move forward with immigration reform this year rather than waiting until after the election as many had assumed.  For more on the logic of this move, see my post from last week.

In the mean time, some are urging John McCain to run to the right on immigration and pursue a restrictionist agenda. I've written a separate piece on why this would be a mistake for McCain and now the Wall Street Journal is weighing in with a similar warning. McCain's past immigration position has actually had more appeal with Republicans than talk radio show hosts would you to believe and the Arizona Senator should not go wobbly on his commitment to real immigration reform.

MICHAEL MAGGIO: 1947-2008

Maggio Michael Maggio, one of America's top immigration lawyers, died yesterday of Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma at the age of 60. Maggio rose to prominence in the 1970s when he worked in Washington to oppose the Chilean dictatorship. Over the years, Michael worked with several refugee and human rights organizations and won numerous court victories in the field. Michael was a leading scholar on immigration law and wrote numerous articles on cutting edge topics in the field and was a leading expert on a variety of topics including the immigration of physicians and artists, legal ethics and deportation issues. Michael was also instrumental in lobbying efforts over the years. He recently worked to create Immigrants List, the bipartisan political action committee dedicated to achieving meaningful immigration reform. 

Michael's friend Peter Schey, the President for the Center for Human Rights and Constitutional Law, had this to say:

Michael worked with the National Immigration Project of the NLG and other human rights and social justice groups on many domestic and international causes close to his heart. We will never forget what Michael stood for -- justice, equality, peace and love. We now say goodbye to an amazing man and close friend whose heart was filled with an abundance of love for life and for the friends, colleagues, and clients he met along his life's journey.

Though I knew about Michael's work since becoming an immigration lawyer 18 years ago, I only had the honor of meeting him last year. I was thrilled to meet a legend in the field.

Michael, you will be missed.

February 10, 2008
WILL MICHIGAN DRIVERS LICENSE LAW DRIVE OUT DOCTORS?

The President of the Michigan State Medical Society is concerned that a new law that limits drivers licenses to green card holders and citizens will cause many MDs to look at locating in other states.

February 08, 2008
IMMIGRANT OF THE DAY: JAN STENERUD - NFL HALL OF FAME MEMBER

Stenerud So just how did all these foreign players end up kickers and punters in the NFL? Norwegian-born Jan Stenerud was one of the first players to bring their soccer-style kicking skills. He came to the US as a foreign student with no intention of playing football. In fact, he came on a ski jumping scholarship to Montana State University. One day in his junior year he was training and happened to see the football team practicing. He decided to try kicking a couple of extra points the way he saw other players - straight on with his toe. Then he decided to try like he knew from soccer - with the side of his foot. He spent nineteen years kicking this way for the Kansas City Chiefs, the Green Bay Packers and the Minnesota Vikings. In 1991, he became the first pure kicker to be elected in to the NFL Hall of Fame, one of the most important accomplishments in American sports.

AMY WINEHOUSE, ETC.

Some of you have noted that I've not posted on Amy Winehouse. I actually have, but on a separate blog I write on fashion, arts and sports immigration. In fact, it's part of a portal I have on my web site on the subject that is one of the most comprehensive sources of information on this topic anywhere, either online or in print.

JEWISH PRESS OUTLET COVERS OLBERMANN SLAMMING OF DOBBS

This item from the Jewish Telegraphic Agency will likely run in hundreds of Jewish newspapers around the country over the next few days and will hopefully keep the pressure on CNN to deal with Dobbs' nightly nativist rantings.

OLBERMANN: DOBBS' ADL REMARK EARNS HIM WORST PERSON IN THE WORLD AWARD

When will CNN end this misery and send Mr. Dobbs packing?

Here's another link.

February 07, 2008
NAVARETTE: ANTIS ARE LOUD, WEAK

San Diego Union Tribune Columnist Rubin Navarette, Jr. writes about how the anti-immigration wing of the GOP has proven to be much weaker than anyone expected.