Lobbying for Inclusion: Rights Politics and the Making of by Carolyn Wong

By Carolyn Wong

In each decade in view that passage of the Hart Cellar Act of 1965, Congress has confronted conflicting pressures: to limit criminal immigration and to supply employers with unregulated entry to migrant exertions. Lobbying for Inclusion indicates that during those debates immigrant rights teams endorsed an incredibly reasonable plan of action: expansionism used to be tempered by way of a politics of inclusion. Rights advocates supported beneficiant relatives unification regulations, for instance, yet they adverse proposals that may admit huge numbers of visitor staff with no delivering a transparent route to citizenship. As leaders of pro-immigrant coalitions, Latino and Asian American rights advocates have been powerful in influencing immigration lawmakers even earlier than their constituencies won political clout within the balloting sales space. good fortune trusted casting rights calls for in universalistic phrases, whereas leveraging their status as representatives of transforming into minority populations.

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Extra info for Lobbying for Inclusion: Rights Politics and the Making of Immigration Policy

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This agreement between economic actors indicated a growing recognition on the part of business and labor that new systems regulating migrant workers are required in an age of mass migration and globalization. In early 2004, President George W. Bush proposed the creation of a new visa program that would allow temporary foreign workers to apply for jobs in the United States after registering in an employment database that would make the jobs available first to Americans. Although the plan did not tie workers to a single employer—as traditional guest-worker programs had done—it did require that temporary workers return home after their work eligibility ends.

In the legislative battles over immigration, ethnic advocacy groups also helped representatives write legislation and frame the relevant issues for public audiences. Ethnic advocates saw the provision of services to new immigrants expand the social networks of their supporters, creating a social base that extended beyond formal membership circles. Traditionally, political representatives of immigrant communities have provided services as a link between themselves and their constituents. In writing about 01-S3453 1/11/06 3:05 PM Page 17 Introduction 17 the nineteenth-century political machine, Boorstin (1973) describes how Irish politicians made themselves into a “personal service agency”: “They were an employment office.

Another was the limited education of new immigrants: Since 1965, immigrants entering the United States have had lower education levels on average than did previous generations of immigrants (Borjas 1994, 1676). This led immigration reformers in Congress to call for reducing the number of family-based immigrants in relation to the number of professional and skilled immigrants. The national interest in immigration policy, the argument went, was to promote economic growth and productivity through more-selective immigration policies that would favor employment-based immigrants with needed skills.

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