Faces of Immigration Reform

Florida International University Law Review, Forthcoming

Seattle University School of Law Research Paper No. 12-5

25 Pages Posted: 1 Feb 2012  

Steven W. Bender

Seattle University School of Law

Date Written: 2012

Abstract

Recognizing the need for a sympathetic construction of immigrants as a precursor to comprehensive immigration reform that goes beyond enforcement prerogatives, this article surveys the various “faces” of immigration reform - both of advocates for progressive reform and the potentially sympathetic group images they wield. I conclude that no image - whether of undocumented workers generally, farm laborers, immigrant children and Dreamers, or undocumented veterans - is poised to garner sympathy from voters and policymakers, particularly against the backdrop of the current economic crisis. Reform may hinge, then, on interest convergence so powerful that it transcends the prevailing negative portrayals of immigrants and our economic woes. As the article speculates in reviewing various grounds of convergence, an effective convergence may come from a surprising but transitory and muted source - the self-interest of politicians rather than from any innate courage or economic convergence.

Keywords: Immigration, politics, Education

Suggested Citation

Bender, Steven W., Faces of Immigration Reform (2012). Florida International University Law Review, Forthcoming; Seattle University School of Law Research Paper No. 12-5. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1996711

Steven W. Bender (Contact Author)

Seattle University School of Law ( email )

901 12th Avenue, Sullivan Hall
P.O. Box 222000
Seattle, WA n/a 98122-1090
United States

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