New Series of Posts: Analyzing the Effect of Election Issues on Immigration

Alexander J. Segal's picture

New Series of Posts: Election Issues and Immigration

Because immigration law and policy is created at the federal level, this November's Presidential and Congressional elections will have a dramatic effect on our immigration system going forward. Before venturing further, I will provide a brief overview of the ways that the people elected this November will be able to change our immigration laws and policies:

Congress is responsible for writing the immigration statutes whereas the President is responsible for signing them into law or vetoing them;
The Executive Branch, headed by the President, is responsible for executing the immigration statutes and promulgating regulations to that effect;
The President, with the advice and consent of the Senate, appoints the heads of the Departments of Homeland Security, State, Justice (responsible for appointing immigration judges), and Labor, which all oversee different portions of our immigration laws; and
The President, with the advice and consent of the Senate, appoints federal judges who adjudicate certain immigration issues over which they have jurisdiction.

It is no exaggeration to say that every aspect of our immigration system will be affected by the results of this November's federal elections. While many people look simply to who the President is, it is important to remember that there are many other moving parts to our immigration system. While the Executive Branch has broad authority over many immigration issues, the immigration statutes are still written by Congress. Furthermore example, two Presidents may have similar positions on immigration issues, but they would appoint different judges to the federal bench. In general, the President's appointments are very important, since no President micromanages the intricate workings of the various departments and agencies that execute our immigration laws. For this reason, the President's selections for key positions in the Departments of Homeland Security, State, Justice, and Labor will have a dramatic effect on the implementation of immigration laws (and Congress serves as a check on the President's appointments). For this reason, it's important to not ask only where the President stands on immigration issues, but also who he or she would appoint to serve in key posts entrusted with implementing and enforcing our immigration laws.

Due to the significance of federal office-holders on immigration law, I have decided to write one post per week through the November elections in which I will discuss an issue at play in the election from the immigration context. In so doing, I will explain the issue itself, where the Presidential candidates and parties stand on the issue based on the best information available, and what is at stake with regard to the issue in this November's elections. It is important for those of us who are deeply invested in immigration issues to understand how the federal government administers our immigration system and, consequently, the effects that our votes will have on our immigration laws and policies going forward.

Before the primaries started, I wrote a series of posts profiling the Republican and Democratic candidates; including the now-apparent nominees Donald Trump [see blog] and Hillary Clinton [see blog]. To read those posts, please see the see the main blog for the project [see blog]. I will write updated analysis of both Trump and Clinton as part of this series.

See below for the archive of my posts in this series:

1. The Future of DAPA and the DACA Expansion
2. The Immigration Record of Mike Pence
3. The Immigration Record of Tim Kaine
​4. The Porta-Potty Fire of 2016
5. Analysis of Trump's Immigration Speech and Comparison to Clinton's Policies
6. Both Candidates Should Provide Medical Records
7. Studying the Two Mentions of Immigration in the First Presidential Debate
8. Solutions Regarding the Problem of Those Who are Here Illegally
9. Supreme Court Denies Petition for Rehearing in DAPA Case
10. Immigration at the Vice Presidential Debate
11. Examining the Minor Party Candidates on Immigration
12. Immigration in the Final Presidential Debate
13. My Hopes for the Election
14. Analysis of the 2016 Election Result
15. Reasons for Hope with President-Elect Trump and the GOP Congress

Originally Published on June 14, 2016

New Series of Posts:  Analyzing the Effect of Election Issues on Immigration