Has the Media Gone Off the Deep End When it Comes to Immigration?

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iStock_000066740733_LargeCNN’s Ray Sanchez recently published a piece entitled “Immigration Ban? We Were There Exactly 100 Years Ago Today,” claiming that the Trump administration’s Executive Orders (EO) on immigration are “eerily similar” to the Immigration Act of 1917. It also maintains that they target “some of the same people,” implying that the1917 legislation was simply a jingoistic error.

But is he correct? Not really. First, he mischaracterizes the nature of the restrictions in the 1917 act. Those allegedly “targeted” were, among others, prostitutes and their traffickers, those who advocate the overthrow of the U.S. government by force or violence and anyone who would advocate killing of US officers or officials. Every single one of those classes of aliens is still barred by Section 212 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), with good reason – they all constitute threats to the national security or public safety of the United States. And they have consistently been barred from the United States for at least the last century. It’s probably safe to say that no one wants to live next door to foreign criminals, terrorists, and human traffickers.

Secondly, Sanchez implies that President Trump is, somehow, altering the current state of immigration law. But the president does not have the authority to amend the Immigration and Nationality Act. Only Congress can do that. The president can, however, implement programs intended to execute the authorities delegated to him by Congress.

And with the current EOs, the president has done just that. He has exercised authority which he already possesses, pursuant to 8 U.S.C. § 1182(f), to place a temporary moratorium on immigration from a very small list of countries, all of which are designated state sponsors of terror or listed on the index of failed states. Rather than changing immigration law, the EOs simply put existing immigration law into effect.

If CNN is in favor of open borders, and doesn’t approve of the current provisions of the INA, it should say so. But deliberately serving up inaccurate comparisons to mislead readers is a violation of journalistic ethics. Unfortunately, CNN and most of the rest of the mainstream media appear to have gone off the deep end when it comes to covering immigration. The public is consistently bombarded with stories that are legally, factually and historically erroneous. Rather than attempt to report accurately and objectively on immigration issues, the media seem determined to exert ideological influence on the immigration debate. That’s bad news for those who see immigration as a rule of law and national security issue.

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About Author

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Matthew J. O’Brien joined the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) in 2016. Matt is responsible for managing FAIR’s research activities. He also writes content for FAIR’s website and publications. Over the past twenty years he has held a wide variety of positions focusing on immigration issues, both in government and in the private sector. Immediately prior to joining FAIR Matt served as the Chief of the National Security Division (NSD) within the Fraud Detection and National Security Directorate (FDNS) at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), where he was responsible for formulating and implementing procedures to protect the legal immigration system from terrorists, foreign intelligence operatives, and other national security threats.He has also held positions as the Chief of the FDNS Policy and Program Development Unit, as the Chief of the FDNS EB-5 Division, as Assistant Chief Counsel with U.S. Immigration & Customs Enforcement, as a Senior Advisor to the Citizenship and Immigration Services Ombudsman, and as a District Adjudications Officer with the legacy Immigration & Naturalization Service. In addition, Matt has extensive experience as a private bar attorney. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in French from the Johns Hopkins University and a Juris Doctor from the University of Maine School of Law.

30 Comments

  1. avatar

    soros isn’t done with what he started , the destruction of america , he owns the media , terrorists groups, democrat politicians and judges ,and oboma put every thing in place for him, unless trump stops it , he will succeed at what he is doing

  2. avatar
    Raymond Babcock on

    America does not need immigration reform. What is needed is enforcement of policy already in place. Reform is another way to circumvent the laws on the books.

  3. avatar

    Apparently the “Judges” (so-called) of the 9th Circuit can’t read. The law is very explicit on the issue.
    (f) Suspension of entry or imposition of restrictions by President
    Whenever the President finds that the entry of any aliens or of any class of aliens into the United States would be detrimental to the interests of the United States, he may by proclamation, and for such period as he shall deem necessary, suspend the entry of all aliens or any class of aliens as immigrants or non-immigrants, or impose on the entry of aliens any restrictions he may deem to be appropriate. (In Part)
    We already knew about the lying and deception practiced by media in general and CNN in particular.

  4. avatar

    Trump is enforcing current law.

    The seven nations named in Trump’s executive order are drawn from the
    Terrorist Prevention Act of 2015. The 2015 “Visa Waiver Program
    Improvement and Terrorist Travel Prevention Act of 2015” named Iraq,
    Iran, Sudan, and Syria, while its 2016 update added Libya, Somalia, and
    Yemen.

    He’s using Obama’s list. He will create better vetting that will then impact other countries.

    • avatar
      Raymond Babcock on

      This is more proof the federal government is ran for the benefit of elected persons and the rich.

  5. avatar

    Matt the fact is that the President has the power but this was done based on discrimination n that killed the executive order which made unconstitutional….

    Now Obama was criticized for doing just a fraction of these orders but now it is in…Double standard s that Wii kill our country

    • avatar

      What exactly is your position? If you say he “has the power” then that is the end of the discussion. You and others, including federal judges, can ascribe whatever motives you can conjure up, but his power to do so is spelled out. Freedom of religion has nothing to do with it. That is a right guaranteed to US citizens and it has nothing to do with foreign citizens coming here.

        • avatar
          Raymond Babcock on

          I say America is far away from the constitution. People have there life and property under threat. When you win in criminal court. And then taken to civil court. Read the 5th amendment. For it is better to let a guilty party go free. Then it is to jail an innocent person.

      • avatar

        Leland you were never an America…..you none of our values and respect where we came from and our Constitution,,,,

        • avatar

          If you think banning people based on religion is not Unconstitutional…you are one crazy bat……. even the US Court nominee a real American stands by our Constitution and country and tells it how it is but you are phony…..and 2x standard….you should immigrate to a country you bike and fit to fit your way of life….

          • avatar
            Raymond Babcock on

            Some people are able to have freedom. They need some one to tell them what to do. The main issue is that women have civil rights. Women are equal to men in every setting in America.

          • avatar
            Raymond Babcock on

            The security of they American people is more important then anyone from any were. If a person was in your front yard saying they want to kill you and steal from you. Would you open the door to let them in

        • avatar

          If you think banning people based on religion is not Unconstitutional…you are one crazy bat……. even the US Court nominee a real American stands by our Constitution and country and tells it how it is but you are phony…..and 2x standard….you should immigrate to a country you bike and fit to fit your way of life….

          kjhgfdsa

          • avatar

            More trolling? You know that the filter will not let you post the same exact post as the one above so you just throw in some random letters at the end to get around it.

          • avatar

            There is a reason and an etiquette things are done without any amplification of the issues and in a way you don’t feed these people what they are looking for to live…..I never saw in my lifetime that the American way was to cause animosity and problems and the worst to bully your way in……

          • avatar

            It is not based on religion! It is based on the country of origin! WHO can’t read, besides the 9th Circuit Court judges??? Wake up, before your neighbor is taking flying lessons, & is from one of the 7 targeted countries!

  6. avatar

    A big victory with the confirmation of Jeff Sessions. I am sure that the talking heads on CNN and MSNBC are having another big meltdown right now.

    • avatar

      If what is written that the man was w the KKK…..Only understand able the reaction …But I don’t know that

        • avatar

          Did you see the clip of Congresswoman Maxine Waters talking about Trump and Putin and she was saying he supported Putin even though Putin “went into Korea”, and she says Korea with a question mark. Meaning Crimea of course which is only 2 thousand miles away. She had absolutely no idea what she was talking about.

          • avatar

            The same when Senator Paul stated we were at fault about 911 and Giuliani said take it back w/everybody else ..you are a lunatic…….you believe what you want…short sighted…..

      • avatar
        Raymond Babcock on

        The KKK is the party of the democratic party. Hillary Clinton heaped praise on Robert Byrd. Robert Byrd was a member of the KKK until he died. Now Robert Byrd is a dead member of the KKK.

  7. avatar
    Deport Yer Butt on

    When someone named “Ray Sanchez” talks about immigration, we have what is charitably called a “conflict of interest”. Now, if we want to tell the truth, we have what is called pimping for illegals. It’s not just him. ALL of NPR, with the dreadful Ari Shapiro leading the pack, are pimps for illegals. Most of the regular news have bought the “globalization is good for you and builds strong bodies 12 ways” ********. The alt-right is the only trustworthy media on this issue.

  8. avatar

    Sanchez lists the people excluded and you have to wonder which of those classes he wants to allow to come here. He’s just another flat line thinker who insists that immigration was a positive in the past, so therefore it always will be. But people like him refuse to acknowledge the significant differences and the people who were excluded. Many were turned around at Ellis Island because they had diseases or it was felt they might become a “public charge”.

    We used to attract the bravest and most independent people, because they frequently came here with not much more than a determination to succeed. Now we attract welfare recipients who think the government should pay all their basic costs and who will cost us more than they will ever pay in taxes. Giving them citizenship would only worsen this situation.

    • avatar

      And given that Medicare in the long run is destined to become insolvent, bringing people into the country who will be a tax burden is not a very wise thing to do, and will only make matters worse. But unfortunately too many people are incapable of understanding this, especially in our media and government.

    • avatar
      Raymond Babcock on

      I would like for it to not be so. The reason used to let people in is so they can go to are schools. Then take jobs in the high tech industry. I want for Americans to be trained in a school. Hire these people in high tech industry.