ARTICLE: REFORMING THE IMMIGRATION AND NATIONALITY ACT: LABOR CERTIFICATION, ADJUSTMENT OF STATUS, THE REACH OF DEPORTATION, AND ENTRY BY FRAUD Skip over navigation
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Copyright (c) 1984 University of Michigan Law School
University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

ARTICLE: REFORMING THE IMMIGRATION AND NATIONALITY ACT: LABOR CERTIFICATION, ADJUSTMENT OF STATUS, THE REACH OF DEPORTATION, AND ENTRY BY FRAUD

Winter, 1984

17 U. Mich. J.L. Reform 265

Author

Elwin Griffith *

Excerpt

In its earliest days, the United States did not restrict immigration in any way. Congress imposed the first restrictions in 1875 against "undesirable" aliens. 1 Thereafter there were gradual controls until some qualitative limitations found their way into the Immigration Act of 1917. 2 The 1924 Act introduced quantitative restrictions. 3 This 1924 Act was significant because it established a quota system based on the national origins of those aliens residing in the United States in 1920.

These quantitative and qualitative aspects of the immigration law remained substantially unchanged and were codified in the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1952 (INA). 4 The 1965 Amendments to the INA replaced the quota system with a seven category preference system. 5 These amendments introduced new restrictions on aliens who were coming to work in the United States, 6 thus setting the stage for a major development in immigration policy.

There is great anxiety about the large influx of aliens. 7 The discussion becomes more animated when jobs are scarce and aliens may be competing with Americans for opportunities in the labor market. 8 To minimize this competition, the INA requires aliens to obtain certification from the Department of Labor that their employment within the United States will not displace American workers. 9 But this is not the only place where the INA is selective. There are other restrictions which require an alien to disclose any unsavory elements of his past such as criminal convictions 10 or membership in the communist ...
 
 
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