USCIS Director: America’s Immigration System ‘Unjust’

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By Joe Guzzardi

Joe is a CAPS Senior Writing Fellow whose commentaries about California's social issues have run in newspapers throughout California and the country for nearly 30 years. Contact Joe at, or find him on Twitter @joeguzzardi19.

The writer's views are his own.

May 20, 2015

Although the United States has the world’s most generous immigration system, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Director Leon Rodriguez recently referred to it as “unjust.”

USCIS Director Leon Rodriguez
USCIS director unhappy with U.S. immigration policy.

Speaking in Salt Lake City to an immigration advocacy group, the Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Rodriguez said that “real justice will come when we have reform,” a reference to President Obama’s temporarily blocked immigration amnesty action. Rodriguez, whose parents are Cuban immigrants, drew from his personal family history to arrive at his conclusion that current immigration law is “archaic” and doesn’t reflect American “values.”

While it’s true that Rodriguez’s grandfather died before he could join his Cuban family in America, no fault of the U.S. government, the USCIS director is out of line for making a blanket statement that the federal immigration policy is “unjust” when the opposite is the case.

The U.S. admits about 1 million legal immigrants annually, and issues hundreds of thousands more guest worker visas to foreign nationals which contribute to high U.S. unemployment and wage stagnation. Under Rodriguez’s authority, USCIS also oversees refugee and asylum claims which are widely acknowledged to be fraud-ridden.

U.S. immigration laws were not written to accept every person with a desire to come to America. Instead of irrationally railing against generous U.S. immigration policies, Rodriguez would do better to clean up his agency, close the numerous loopholes in the refugee and asylum programs that have given terrorists easy access to the U.S., and investigate the EB-5 visa, often referred to as “citizenship for sale,” that has recently come under widespread criticism.

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