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Understanding Immigration Federalism

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Submitted By jovelez75
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Understanding Immigration Federalism
Jorge L. Velez
POL201: American National Government

08/26/2014

According to elected officials and policy advocates we the United States are going through a period of demographic change, with the flooding of immigrants, that is causing major concerns culturally and economically throughout the states. A lot of these states and localities are unaccustomed to these types of changes, so they along with the federal government are being responsible on implementing immigration-related demands in the United States and the emergence of what’s being called “immigration federalism”. But as you will soon see, the immigration is felt differently in different parts of the country, and these immigration laws are not always needed or used the right way.
The enforcement of our immigration laws were federally controlled at one point, with the local law enforcement supporting us upon request, but with time this has changed. The federal government started to delegate enforcement power to the local level in 1996 with the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act (IIRIRA). The IIRIRA included the clause known as section 287(g) inviting county, state, and city law agencies to partner up with the federal government to enforce violations of federal immigration law, by offering to train officers in the local law agencies, police departments and others to screen and arrest whoever they suspected to be an unauthorized immigrant. Before the 9/11 attacks there existed no 287(g) agreements signed, but since the attacks the number of 287(g) agreements has grown, with seventy-one county, state, and municipal agencies taking part in this program. The IIRIRA doesn’t require that law enforcement authorities, enforce this federal immigration laws, it merely invites them to do so, while maintaining with constitutional separation of…...

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