House passes more anti-immigrant bills

On Sept. 21, the House of Representatives voted 328-95 to approve HR 6094–the “Community Protection Act of 2006”–an anti-immigrant bill which would allow indefinite detention, overturning the Supreme Court’s June 2001 Zadvydas v. Davis ruling. The bill would also allow noncitizens to be quickly deported if the government believes they are gang members, and would bar suspected gang members from obtaining political asylum. The same day, the House voted 277-140 to pass HR 6095—the Immigration Law Enforcement Act of 2006—which would authorize state and local police to enforce federal immigration law, expand expedited removal, limit appeals and lawsuits in immigration cases and revoke the Orantes injunction, which protects Salvadorans from expedited removal. A third bill, passed unanimously, would impose a 20-year prison sentence for creating or financing a tunnel under the US border.

The Senate is due to consider these measures during the week of Sept. 25. On Sept. 22 the Senate was debating a border fence bill approved by the House on Sept. 14. It is possible that proponents of the enforcement bills will seek to attach them to Department of Homeland Security (DHS) appropriations bills which have already passed both houses and are being reconciled in committee. Advocates are urging people who support immigrant rights to contact their senators immediately to express opposition to these bills. (National Immigration Law Center-NILC Urgent Update, Sept. 21; Los Angeles Times, Washington Times, AP, Sept. 22)

From Immigration News Briefs, Sept. 23

Note that Zadvydas v. Davis was instrumental in the case of Farouk Abdel-Muhti.

See our last post on the immigration crackdown.