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Head Scarves, Minarets and the Arizona Immigration Law

I've been following the story of a Muslim French woman who was given a ticket in April for driving while wearing her hijab, or veil.  She was issued the ticket for driving with obscured vision. Yesterday, it jumped into mainstream American media over at the Washington Post. The story is the high water mark in a public…

New Poll Shows Tradeoffs on Immigration

It's been pretty obvious for a while that there's a major split between Hispanics and non-Hispanics on the immigration policy furor sparked by Arizona's new law authorizing state and local law enforcement agencies to enforce federal immigration laws. A new MSNBC/NBC/Telemundo poll helps outline the political choices this situation poses for both parties. To put it simply,…

Charting the GOP Shift on Immigration

Like observers from all over the partisan and ideological spectrum, I've been following the fallout from Arizona's new immigration law (compounded by conflicting reports that the Obama administration and/or congressional Democratic leaders might be moving up federal immigration legislation in the queue) very closely, given the implications this issue has for both 2010 and (particularly)…

The New Prop 187?

It's increasingly clear that Arizona's new immigration law, signed by Republican governor Jan Brewer last Friday, is going to be a galvinizing force in national, not just state, politics. This will be true whether or not Congress gets serious on comprehensive immigration reform legislation, this year or next. While conservatives will predictably object that support for…

The News That Wasn’t: The Senate Climate Bill

This morning's biggest story is about what's not happening. This weekend, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) announced that he could not support the tripartisan climate bill in the Senate that he is co-sponsoring in the wake of reports that Democrats will be prioritizing immigration reform. Graham's surprise move led to the scuttling of the bill's long-anticipated…

Immigration, the Tea Partiers and the GOP’s Future

It's long been apparent that immigration is an issue that is the political equivalent of unstable nitroglycerine: complex and dangerous. It arguably splits both major parties, although national Democratic politicians generally favor "comprehensive immigration reform" (basically a "path to citizenship" for undocumented workers who meet certain conditions and legalize themselves, along with various degrees of…

Brain Gain: Why We Should Grant Visas to Immigrant Entrepreneurs

A recent post highlighted the importance of new and young companies to job creation in the U.S., implicitly raising an important question for policy makers: How can we increase the number of startups? Assuming it can be done, such an increase would not solve all of the economic challenges facing this country, but it would…

A Way Forward on Immigration

Since November 2008, I have been participating in roundtable discussions on immigration policy with a group of academics, policy analysts, community leaders, and former government officials brought together by the Brookings Institution and the Kenan Institute for Ethics at Duke University. The participants ranged across the political spectrum and had different perspectives on immigration. But…