How immigrants are redefining 'American' in Southern California

In immigration news: Latest on House discharge petition, tax scammers target immigrants, more

Proposals that would simplify the filing process for many Americans are under fire from tax-preparation company TurboTax. Here, a 2013 IRS Estimated Tax form.

Damian Dovarganes/AP

In time for tax day, the Internal Revenue Service is warning people to watch out for tax-related phone scams targeting consumers, especially those who are recent immigrants. Some scammers threaten their victims with deportation.

House Democrats need 27 signatures to force vote on comprehensive immigration reform bill - Washington Post The latest on House Democrats' discharge petition, a procedural effort to force a vote on a House immigration reform bill: "House Democrats say they currently have 191 signatures — all Democrats — on the petition, and that they will recommit to pressure Republican lawmakers who have said previously that they would support comprehensive immigration reform. The petition must get 218 signatures to force a vote on the legislation."

IRS sounds warning on aggressive scam - Dallas Morning News In time for tax day, the Internal Revenue Service is warning taxpayers "to guard against sophisticated and aggressive phone scams targeting consumers, particularly recent immigrants." Targeted individuals are told they are entitled to big refunds or that they owe money immediately, and are "threatened with deportation, arrest, having their utilities shut off or having their driver’s licenses revoked."


In immigration news: Race and reform, immigration and the GOP in 2016, deportation ruling for Salvadoran ex-general, more

May Day March for Immigration Reform

Justin Valas/flickr Creative Commons

Is race a roadblock to immigration reform in Congress? Some critics in recent days have suggested that it is.

Is race holding up immigration reform? - CNN Candy Crowley interviews Rep. Steve Israel (D-New York) and Rep. Greg Walden  (R-Oregon) on topics that include the issue of race as a factor in the immigration reform stalemate. Says Israel: “To a significant extent, the Republican base does have elements that are animated by racism. And that’s unfortunate.” Says Walden: "It's both wrong and unfortunate."

Will immigration undermine Republicans in 2016? - CBS News From the story: "A weekend cattle call of many of the party's prospective nominees showed that, like 2012, the GOP's base may still reward the candidate who seen as the biggest hard-liner on the issue, even though there may be a price to pay among Hispanic voters." This comes after former Florida governor Jeb Bush's recent comment about the decision to come to the U.S. illegally being an "act of love" for many families, which drew scorn from fellow conservatives.


In immigration news: Asylum seekers at the border, Jeb Bush defends 'act of love' immigration comment, more

Fronteras Rio Grande

Monica Ortiz Uribe

A grandfather and grandson hug after being apprehended by the U.S. Border Patrol in Hidalgo, Texas. Authorities along the U.S.-Mexico border in Texas have seen growing migrant traffic from Central America, with many people seeking asylum as they flee poverty and gang violence back home.

Hoping for Asylum, Migrants Strain U.S. Border - New York Times Border crossing apprehensions in Texas' Rio Grande Valley are up, but Mexican migrants no longer make up the majority. They've been replaced by migrants from Central America, and many arrive seeking asylum, fleeing not only poverty but gang violence in their native countries. Without enough space to hold them, authorities have had to release some into the U.S. temporarily, and the message has made it back home "that those who make it to American soil have a good chance of staying."

White House may slow immigration deportations unless Congress acts - Los Angeles Times From the story: "After meeting with Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, leaders of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus voiced confidence Wednesday that if the Republican-led House fails to undertake immigration reform this year, the administration will act by executive action. Last month, President Obama promised Latino leaders that his administration would review its deportation policy and enforce laws 'more humanely.' "


In immigration news: Pelosi cites race as reform roadblock, why some Asian Americans don't vote, California's Latino plurality, more

Democratic minority leader Nancy Pelosi voted against the amendment.

Getty Images

Speaking with reporters on Thursday, Democratic House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi suggested that race plays a role in House Republicans' reluctance to embrace immigration reform. Pelosi and other House Democrats recently filed a petition to force a vote on a broad House immigration bill.

Pelosi: House GOP holding up immigration bill because of race - Washington Post Democratic House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of California told reporters Thursday that she believes race is a factor in Republican lawmakers' reluctance to embrace immigration reform. From the story: "' I think race has something to do with the fact that (the GOP House leadership) are not bringing up an immigration bill,' Pelosi said Thursday morning, later adding: 'I've heard them say to the Irish, 'if it were just you this would be easy.' "

Nebraska City Ready to Enforce Immigration Rules - Associated Press After a lengthy legal battle and a resident vote earlier this year, the small city of Fremont, Nebraska will begin requiring a $5 renters' permit this week. Renters will need to "swear they have legal permission to live in the United States," and landlords won't be able to rent to tenants who lack a permit.


Student loan plan for 'Dreamers' at UC, Cal State advances

UCLA Dreamers

Roberto (Bear) Guerra

"Dreamers" from UCLA's IDEAS support network prepare to enter their graduation ceremony in 2012.

Potentially thousands of students brought to the US illegally as children could turn to a $9.2 million loan program for help with tuition at California's public universities.

Under a proposal that cleared a Senate education panel Wednesday, the campus-based loan program would be funded in part by California State University and the University of California. In the first year, the schools would provide $2.3 million. The state general fund would cover the remaining $6.9 million — an amount that would double each year until the program became self-sustaining. 

Since 2001, California has allowed so-called "Dreamers" to pay tuition at lower in-state rates, and starting last year, they could apply for state tuition aid for low-income students, or Cal Grants. But sponsor Sen. Ricardo Lara, D-Bell Gardens, pointed out that these young adults do not qualify for loans from the federal government or private lenders.