Immigration Spending Hits $18 Billion, Says Study

“The Obama administration spent more money on immigration enforcement in the last fiscal year than all other federal law enforcement agencies combined, according to a report on the government’s enforcement efforts from a Washington think tank,” the AP reports. “The report on Monday from the Migration Policy Institute, a non-partisan group focused on global immigration issues, said in the 2012 budget year that ended in September the government spent about $18 billion on immigration enforcement programs…”

Esther Cepeda – Behind the Obama Administration’s Math on Deportations

“Though John Morton, the director of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, stated that 55 percent of those deported were convicted of felonies or misdemeanors — about twice the number of people in such categories deported in fiscal year 2008 — the immigrants in question are not overwhelmingly murderers, gang-bangers or drug pushers we’d normally assume them to be,” says Esther Cepeda.

“According to Bryan Johnson, an immigration attorney and blogger in New York, the only reason that ICE is breaking deportation records is because Border Patrol apprehensions are also counted. When these individuals are caught a second time crossing the border, they are then prosecuted for illegal re-entry, a federal felony.”

Ruben Navarrette Jr. – Don’t Trust Obama on Immigration

“Now that we’re in the new year, the nation’s 52 million Latinos need to make a resolution — to never again trust President Obama when it comes to immigration. For one thing, Obama hasn’t earned that trust. Judging from his legislative record in the Illinois state Senate and the U.S. Senate, he never cared about immigrants or immigration. He only values it as a wedge issue to use against Republicans, and to make himself appear compassionate by comparison,” says Ruben Navarrette Jr.

“On this issue, Obama comes across as cynical beyond belief. He does what he feels he needs to do for his own benefit, and then tries to cover his tracks by misrepresenting the facts and taking advantage of how easy it is to fool people who would rather believe anything he says than admit they made a mistake.”

Should Canada’s Guest Worker Program Be a Model for the U.S.?

“The United States gives out about 50,000 seasonal agricultural visas per year, nearly all of them to Mexican workers. But U.S. farmers, immigrant advocate groups, labor unions and Mexican officials say that the current U.S. program is a mess: inefficient, bureaucratic and vulnerable to abuses by swindlers and shady recruiters who charge potential workers thousands of dollars to find jobs for them and prepare their visa applications,” the Washington Post writes.

“The frustrations have left many looking north, to Canada, where government officials partner with their Mexican counterparts to recruit workers, expedite visas, guarantee health and safety standards, and coordinate travel arrangements and pay.”

Sens. McCain, Flake Ready to Push Amnesty

“Arizona’s Republican Sens. John McCain and Jeff Flake are poised to lead the way on immigration reform this year. McCain and Flake, a former six-term U.S. representative, were both previously known as high-profile supporters of proposals for a guest-worker program and a pathway to legal status for illegal immigrants already in the country,” the Arizona Republic says.

“But McCain and Flake, who on Thursday replaced former GOP Sen. Jon Kyl, are now part of a bipartisan group of eight senators that is pressing forward on a new comprehensive plan.”

Conn. To Issue Licenses to Obama Amnesty Recipients

“The state will issue driver’s licenses to young people who qualify for a new “deferred action” immigration enforcement program that President Barack Obama announced in August. The news came at a rally Sunday attended by hundreds of people, many of them immigrants from several countries, and was announced by the co-chairman of a regional clergy group,” the New Haven Register says.