The Week Ahead: March 13-17

Communications Associate

March 13, 2017


“Immigrants matter because we actually find the best of ourselves when we’re in community with people who are different than us, who share different values, who come from different backgrounds, different experiences and have different stories. And we actually learn the most when we actually engage with the ‘other,’ not just those that are like us.”

— Gabe Lyons, President of Q Ideas, March 7


A Border Wall Would Come at Great Cost

The Trump administration cannot immediately pay for a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border, as a new blog post addresses.

Despite the Jan. 25 executive order that directs the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to build a physical barrier along the Southwest border and the Feb. 20 DHS memo on how the order would be implemented, the administration has not provided concrete plans regarding funding.

According to a recent internal DHS report, a physical barrier along 1,250 miles would cost American taxpayers about $21.6 billion. Other estimates are even higher: The Cato Institute projected the cost to be as high as $31.2 billion.

However, DHS has limited authority to pay for the barrier using funds that Congress already has appropriated, and the number of miles the department could pay for immediately would represent only a fraction of the border and about 2.1 percent of the total cost. The administration would need to ask Congress for the remaining $21.15 billion, as the blog post notes.

New Travel Ban to Take Effect Thursday

President Trump’s revised executive order that bans travel from six Muslim-majority countries and freezes refugee resettlement, signed March 6, is scheduled to go into effect Thursday.

The plan calls for suspension of entry of citizens and nationals from Sudan, Syria, Iran, Libya, Somalia and Yemen for 90 days. Unlike the previous version of this executive order, the ban does not include people from Iraq and does not apply to lawful permanent residents, dual nationals with passports issued by countries that are not banned and those already approved for travel to the U.S.

Multiple lawsuits have been filed challenging the new ban.

Digital Video Ads Build Support for Young Undocumented Immigrants

In North and South Carolina, digital video ads are featuring the stories of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients.

Teachers and mentors of Jose Contreras Rangel and Maria Cervantes Garcia, both of whom are college students and undocumented immigrants, highlight their contributions to their communities.

The ads, an effort to build support for DACA recipients among voters across both states, are running on Facebook, YouTube and Google throughout March. To watch Jose’s story, click here, and to watch Maria’s story, click here.


Summary of immigration legislation introduced and government reports on immigration:


WASHINGTON POST (Rubin Column): Opposition to immigration is at odds with economic growth
By Jennifer Rubin
March 9, 2017

The anti-immigrant vitriol from the troika of President Trump and advisers Stephen K. Bannon and Stephen Miller is increasingly at odds with America’s economic well-being. Pew Research explains:

For most of the past half-century, adults in the U.S. Baby Boom generation – those born after World War II and before 1965 – have been the main driver of the nation’s expanding workforce. But as this large generation heads into retirement, the increase in the potential labor force will slow markedly, and immigrants will play the primary role in the future growth of the working-age population (though they will remain a minority of it).

The number of adults in the prime working ages of 25 to 64 – 173.2 million in 2015 – will rise to 183.2 million in 2035, according to Pew Research Center projections. That total growth of 10 million over two decades will be lower than the total in any single decade since the Baby Boomers began pouring into the workforce in the 1960s. The growth rate of working-age adults will also be markedly reduced.

Read more:

CLEVELAND PLAIN DEALER: President Trump’s new immigration order offers little solace to Cleveland’s future doctors
By Eric Heisig
March 9, 2017

CLEVELAND, Ohio — President Donald Trump’s new executive order on immigration from six Muslim-majority countries has foreign nationals who want to become residents at three large teaching hospitals in Cleveland in a holding pattern.

While Trump’s administration sought to clarify what many saw as problems with his first executive order issued in January, the new one is set to take effect on March 16, one day before many soon-to-be medical residents learn where they are assigned for their training.

The Cleveland Clinic, MetroHealth System and University Hospitals employ as much as 25 percent of its residents from foreign countries. Local doctors now worry they may have trouble filling its residency programs.

The latest version of the order is narrower and specifies that a 90-day ban on people from Sudan, Syria, Iran, Libya, Somalia and Yemen does not apply to people with valid visas. The White House also dropped Iraq from its list of targeted countries following pressure from the Pentagon and State Department, which had urged the White House to reconsider, given Iraq’s role in fighting the Islamic State group.

Read more: