Immigration Reform

Issues ››› Immigration Reform
  • David Gregory Ignores Rubio's Shift To Hardline Immigration Stance To Claim He Could "Bring Conservatives Around" On The Issue

    ››› ››› KATIE SULLIVAN Versión en español

    Former Meet the Press host David Gregory argued on CNN that Republican presidential candidate Marco Rubio could "bring conservatives around, potentially, on immigration," failing to note that Rubio has changed his stance on immigration, walking back his previous support for comprehensive reform while gradually adopting extreme conservative positions.

  • The Facts Undercut Conservative Media Efforts To Push GOP Toward Harsh Anti-Immigrant Policies

    ››› ››› ZACHARY PLEAT

    A report from the Center For Migration Studies (CMS) found that the undocumented immigrant population in the United States has dropped below 11 million for the first time since 2003. CMS officials specifically noted that they "took issue with the characterizations" of immigration by Republican candidates, many of whom contended that immigration is a growing problem. Those characterizations have in fact been encouraged by conservative media, which have pressured Republican presidential candidates into taking hardline anti-immigration policy stances and defended candidates that have been criticized for adopting extreme positions.

  • Fox News' Primetime Lineup Ignored Ted Cruz's Proposal To Deport 11 Million Immigrants And Halt Legal Immigration

    Blog ››› ››› TYLER CHERRY

    Fox News' three primetime shows wholly ignored GOP presidential candidate Ted Cruz (R-TX)'s announcement that he would not only deport all 11.3 million undocumented immigrants in the country, but would also halt legal immigration and "oppose" "allowing folks to come back in and become citizens."

    At a campaign stop in Iowa on January 4, Cruz was asked to compare his immigration plan to that of GOP presidential frontrunner Donald Trump, who advocates deporting all 11.3 million undocumented immigrants. Cruz responded that he would not only deport all 11.3 million immigrants, but would also not allow deported immigrants to re-enter the country or apply for citizenship:

    QUESTIONER: Both you and Donald Trump are really strong on immigration, but he supports deporting all the illegal immigrants. Are you willing to say the same?

    SEN. TED CRUZ (R-TX): Absolutely, yes. We should enforce the law.

    QUESTIONER: All?

    CRUZ: We should enforce the law.

    QUESTIONER: Ok.

    CRUZ: And in fact, look, there's a difference. He's advocated allowing folks to come back in and become citizens. I oppose that.

    Fox's three primetime shows - The O'Reilly FactorThe Kelly File, and Hannity -- all ignored the remarks and failed to discuss Cruz's deportation plan on the January 4, 5, and 6 editions of their shows. While Cruz's comments were entirely disregarded on the January 4, 5, and 6 editions of The O'Reilly Factor and The Kelly File, Fox host Sean Hannity had an opportunity to bring up the issue directly with Cruz during an interview on his show.

    On the January 4 edition of Hannity, Sean Hannity hosted Cruz, and despite discussing the topic of immigration, failed to ask Cruz directly about his plan to halt legal immigration. Hannity asked Cruz "what happens to the eleven million people that are here illegally?" When Cruz dodged the question, Hannity gave him a pass and moved on to a new topic:

    SEAN HANNITY (HOST): The issue of immigration is so key this year, and both Marco Rubio and Donald Trump have gone after you. Trump said you copied his immigration plan. You had that battle in the last debate with Rubio. And your statement was "I oppose legalization today, tomorrow, and forever." Meaning what, that we build the fence, that we secure the border, what happens to the eleven million people that are here illegally? 

    SEN. TED CRUZ (R-TX): We enforce the law. Existing law provides that if we apprehend someone here illegally, we deport them. That's what existing law is, and we have a president, Barack Obama, who refuses to follow the law. I've spent my whole life fighting to defend the rule of law, fighting to defend theConstitution. When it comes to immigration, 2013 was really, as Reagan would say, a time for choosing. It's when a line was drawn in the sand. On one side, you had Barack Obama and you had Chuck Schumer, and you had a whole lot of establishment Republicans in Washington lining up behind a massive amnesty plan. On the other side of the line were people like Steve Sessions, where people like Iowa's own Steve King, and I stood with Jeff Sessions and Steve King. And we led the fight to defeat theGang of Eight amnesty plan, to preserve the rule of law and to fight to secure our borders. And you know, it's interesting. A lot of presidential candidates suddenly have discovered illegal immigration is an issue. I'll point out, Sean, you remember that 2013 fight. You were standing there leading the fight, Mark Levin was leading the fight, Rush was leading the fight. You look at the men and women standing on that debate stage, in 2013 when Obama was on the verge of getting his amnesty win, most of the other men and women on that debate stage were nowhere to be found.

  • Absolving Right-Wing Media, Marco Rubio Blames American People For Immigration Reform Failure

    ››› ››› JULIE ALDERMAN

    During the December 15 Republican presidential debate, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) again backed away from his support of comprehensive immigration reform in 2013, saying his opinion changed with that of the American people. However, polling data suggests that Americans consistently favored comprehensive immigration reform, the Republican Party sabotaged immigration reform, and Rubio faced extreme backlash from right-wing media causing him to change his position.

  • Will CNN Debate Moderators Ask Marco Rubio About His Shifting Position On Immigration?

    Rubio Has Not Been Asked About His Changing Positions On Comprehensive Immigration Reform In Any Presidential Debate

    ››› ››› TYLER CHERRY Versión en español

    As CNN prepares to host the fifth GOP presidential primary debate on December 15, a Media Matters analysis has determined that moderators of the past GOP debates have not asked Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) about his shifting positions on immigration reform, while other candidates have been asked about their immigration stances.

  • Hispanic Media Decry Anti-Immigrant Sentiment Underlying Anti-Refugee Rhetoric

    Blog ››› ››› CRISTINA LOPEZ

    Leading voices in Hispanic journalism are condemning the rise of anti-refugee rhetoric following the terrorist attacks in Paris, pointing out how the underlying sentiment reflects conservative media's typical nativist and anti-immigrant bias that has effectively cast all immigrants as "terrorists and criminals, without reforming a system that would allow us to know" who among us poses an actual threat.

    In the wake of the November 13 terrorist attacks in Paris and elsewhere, a number of Republican presidential candidates, governors, and media figures have used the Islamic State violence to fearmonger about Muslims and Islam. Many on the right are calling for the U.S. to deny entry to Muslim Syrian refugees, claiming they would pose a significant threat to the U.S., despite the fact that major media have slammed Republicans for "def[ying] what the nation stands for" and pushing divisive rhetoric that could "provide propaganda benefits to the Islamic State."

    In a November 17 column, La Opinión's editorial board condemned Republican presidential candidates and governors who "want to close the door on 10,000 Syrian refugees for fear of terrorist infiltrators," explaining that this approach reflects the "Republican Party's nativist, anti-immigrant discourse," while also ignoring evidence that most attackers are neither immigrants nor refugees. La Opinión -- one of the leading Latino daily newspapers in the U.S. -- also noted that "[t]his type of reaction does nothing but feed internal fears, granting a victory to terrorists, whose goal is precisely to shake the feeling of safety in free societies":

    The Paris attacks carried out by ISIS are being used to sustain the Republican Party's nativist, anti-immigrant discourse.

    [...]

    It is sad to see that the reaction to terrorism is to build border walls and ignore a humanitarian crisis out of fear. Terrorism triumphs when it succeeds in intimidating governments and civilians. Leadership is shown by rising to challenges posed by the situation, not by taking advantage of them to feed existing fear and resentment against immigrants and foreigners among the electorate.

    Maria Elena Salinas, co-anchor of the daily Univison's Noticiero Univision, drew a similar parallel, pointing out that "most states" whose governors have "reject[ed] Syrian refugees are the same ones that" sued President Obama for his executive action on immigration, managing to effectively block a policy that could have protected millions of immigrants from deportation.

    Columnist Maribel Hastings also slammed the extremist exploitation of recent terrorist attacks in a November 16 article for Univision, writing that "extremist sectors cling to recent events to continue to push their fear agenda and look for scapegoats." She argued that one effect of terrorism has been to obfuscate the debate about immigration reform, which gives anti-immigrant activists a powerful argumentative tool: to paint all immigrants with a broad brush, casting "all as terrorists and criminals" while opposing reforms to the system that would make it easier to single out those who are truly dangerous. Translated from Hastings' column:

    It is to be expected that extremist sectors cling to recent events to continue to push their fear agenda and look for scape goats, without explaining, for example, how we got to this point.

    [...]

    Since then [9/11], to date, immigration reform through legislation has not progressed because anti-immigrants believe it's wiser to put all immigrants in the same basket, casting all as terrorists and criminals, without reforming a system that would allow us to know who is really among us, especially in these times of uncertainty, to be able to separate the wheat from the chaff.

    It remains to be seen if terrorist attacks in Paris change the course of the electoral debate in the United States; if fear supposes the rise of radical politicians; if proposals to seal the borders gain traction without the implementation of an immigration system that allows us to distinguish between working, established immigrants and those who are here to cause damage; and where, as usual, innocents pay for the sins of others, especially refugees fleeing from the same terror of the Islamic State.