Union-Tribune: Military service leads to U.S. citizenship

By Tatiana Sanchez

Daniel Torres, an unauthorized immigrant who enlisted in the Marine Corps using a false birth certificate, became an American citizen on Thursday. He is likely the first unauthorized immigrant to become a citizen by way of his military service, some advocates say.

Immigrant Felons And Deportation: One Grandmother’s Case

Maria Sanchez is a 63-year-old widow, grandmother of three and a legal permanent resident who has lived and worked in Sonoma County, Calif., for more than 40 years.

But she has also come close to being deported. Four years ago, Sanchez was almost separated from her family here in the U.S. for a crime she committed in the late 1990s. Hers is a story that brings up one of the most volatile issues in this election season — immigration, and by extension, deportation.

President Obama has said he wants to prioritize the deportation of immigrants with criminal records. In 2014, he stressed that immigration agents would target “felons, not families.” Sanchez’s situation, however, reveals that some immigrant felons are not what they seem. And many may still have a strong case for remaining in the United States.

Read the full story here.

KPBS: How Naturalizing Immigrants Can Improve Economies

By Simon Thompson

A recent study by the Urban Institute found cities reap significant economic benefits when eligible residents become naturalized U.S. citizens. Nationally, there are about 8.8 million immigrants eligible to become U.S. citizens. But each year, only 10 percent of them take that step.

Raksmey Chan is one of that 10 percent. She came to the U.S. from Cambodia three years ago to live with her husband and son in Artesia, New Mexico. She recently took the oath of citizenship in Las Cruces.

NY Times Video: Obama Counters Anti-Muslim Talk by Welcoming New Citizens


WASHINGTON — Standing in a room with the original Constitution, Declaration of Independence and Bill of Rights, President Obama on Tuesday declared that the United States should never give into fear but should continue to welcome immigrants and refugees because “that’s who we are.”

“Immigration is our origin story,” Mr. Obama said.

The speech, on the 224th anniversary of the ratification of the Bill of Rights, was intended as a rebuke to what the White House has called hateful talk against Muslims and immigrants by prominent Republicans. Mr. Obama gave the speech at the National Archives as 31 people from 25 different countries were sworn in as American citizens.

AP: Texas Birth Certificate Rules Often Unenforced

By Associated Press

Texas has for seven years said it won’t accept Mexican identification cards when issuing birth certificates for children of people in the United States illegally. But it doesn’t appear to have stepped up enforcement until recently, amid mounting political pressure to get tougher on immigration, records obtained by The Associated Press show.

That could validate complaints from immigrant parents suing in federal court, claiming the state is denying “birthright” U.S. citizenship for their Texas-born children guaranteed under the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

AP: Texas May Deny Birth Certificates to Immigrants’ Children, Judge Rules

By Seth Robbins

(SAN ANTONIO) — A federal judge has chosen for now not to force Texas health officials to change their stance in denying birth certificates to immigrant families with U.S- born children, saying that the families raised “grave concerns” but more evidence is needed, according to a ruling issued Friday.

U.S. District Judge Robert Pitman in Austin denied an emergency injunction on behalf of immigrant families seeking birth certificates for their children after the Department of State Health Services refused to recognize as valid certain forms of identification.