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May 21, 2014

Anti-Immigrant Activist Creates Front Group Focusing On Biometric Security


Janice Kephart

In recent months, Janice Kephart, a current fellow and former staffer at the anti-immigrant think tank Center for Immigration Studies (CIS), established a new front group, the Secure Identity and Biometrics Association (SIBA). The anti-immigrant movement often uses the tactic of establishing front groups in order to reach a broader base. In this case, it is trying to appeal to the biometric and identity technology community.

Like other front groups established with the help of the anti-immigrant movement, SIBA is made up of anti-immigrant activists who promote the movement’s agenda. Kephart’s relationship with CIS dates back almost ten years. She first appeared on various CIS panels before acting as CIS’s director of security policy. Kephart began working as a special council for the Senate Judiciary Committee during the push to pass an immigration reform bill in the Senate in 2013. Kephart is now listed as a “national security fellow” for CIS.

Michael Dougherty, one of several SIBA board members announced a few weeks ago, also has ties to the anti-immigrant movement. In 2010, Dougherty participated in a CIS panel titled, “The Politics and Practicalities of a US EXIT Program.”

The “key issue areas” section of SIBA website contains a number of topics important to the anti-immigrant cause. The anti-immigrant movement claims many undocumented immigrants are using fraudulent forms of identification in order to receive benefits and work in the United States. SIBA supports the REAL ID Act, claiming it will improve national security and catch criminals. The organization is also in favor of E-Verify, a flawed federal pilot program that allows employers to verify the eligibility of newly-hired employees. Making E-Verify mandatory is another major long-term goal of the anti-immigrant movement.

As the push for immigration reform continues, the anti-immigrant movement continues to woo supporters from different movements and backgrounds in an attempt to argue that Americans are not in favor of reform. The creation of SIBA is the latest in a long line of groups founded by leaders in the movement to further this goal.

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April 1, 2014

Anti-Immigrant Movement Pushes State Strategies In 2014

While the push for immigration reform at the federal level is currently at a standstill, the immigration debate at the state and local level is in high gear. Continuing the trend of the past few years, lawmakers are introducing large numbers of pro-immigrant legislation in states around the country.dc-march-for-jobs-380

In response, the anti-immigrant movement is implementing a multi-pronged strategy at the state and local level with several key goals in mind.  These include attempts to block legislation at the state level granting in-state tuition to qualified students, as well as driver’s licenses and other public benefits to Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients. In June 2012, President Obama issued the DACA executive order, which allows some eli­gi­ble undocumented youth who were not born in the U.S. but who were brought to the country at a young age to apply for tem­po­rary work autho­riza­tion, and calls for ICE agents to refrain from deporting them.

The anti-immigrant movement is also going beyond trying to prevent pro-immigrant legislation. Activists in the movement are attempting to get restrictive laws and policies on the books such as greater voter registration restrictions in the form of voter ID requirements and English-only laws at the state and local level.

Please see “Anti-Immigrant Movement Implements Nativist State Strategies in 2014” for more information.


El movimiento anti-inmigrante promueve las estrategias estatales en 2014

Mientras que el impulso a la reforma migratoria a nivel federal está actualmente frenado, el debate sobre la inmigración en el nivel local y estatal está en plena marcha. Continuando la tendencia de los últimos años, los legisladores están introduciendo numerosas leyes en favor de los inmigrantes en estados de  todo el país.

En respuesta, el movimiento anti-inmigrante está implementando una estrategia multifacética a nivel estatal y local con varios objetivos en mente.  Estos incluyen intentos para bloquear leyes a nivel estatal concediendo tarifas de matrícula estatal a estudiantes calificados, así como licencias de conducir y otros beneficios públicos a quienes cumplen los requisitos del Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (Aplazamiento de Acciones contra Menores)(DACA). En junio de 2012, el Presidente Obama emitió la orden ejecutiva DACA que permite a algunos jóvenes indocumentados que no nacieron en Estados Unidos pero llegaron al país a una edad temprana solicitar permiso de trabajo temporal  y pide a los agentes del ICE  que se abstengan de deportarlos .

El movimiento anti-inmigrante también va más allá al tratar de evitar la legislación pro-inmigrantes. Los activistas del movimiento intentan implementar leyes y políticas restrictivas tales como mayores restricciones en la inscripción de votantes en forma de requisitos de identificación de votantes y leyes para que se utilice únicamente el inglés a nivel local y estatal.

Para mayor información, por favor consulte “Anti-Immigrant Movement Implements Nativist State Strategies in 2014”.


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February 5, 2014

Funders Of The Anti-Immigrant Movement

The major anti-immigrant groups in the United States receive the bulk of their donations from foundations with close ties to the movement itself as well as foundations with a history of funding right-wing organizations. The extreme anti-immigrant group Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR), the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) and NumbersUSA benefit the most from these donations.  They boast annual budgets in the millions of dollars, which are used to promote their anti-immigrant agenda of blocking pro-immigrant legislation, drafting and promoting anti-immigrant legislation and demonizing immigrants.colcom-foundation-weeden-foundation

With continued support from the Pittsburg-based Colcom Foundation, the Pennsylvania and Florida-based Scaife Foundations and the New York-based Weeden Foundation, anti-immigrant groups can sustain and promote their nativist agenda. Despite the many examples of bigotry and nativism stemming from the anti-immigrant groups they fund, these foundations show no signs of curtailing their funding.

Please see “Funders of the Anti-immigrant Movement” for more information.

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