Arkansas Immigration

Paul Petersen
You Tube

An Arizona official charged with running an adoption-fraud scheme involving women from the Marshall Islands has asked an Arkansas court to delay trial for 10 months.

Maricopa County Assessor Paul Petersen is accused of smuggling and paying pregnant women from the small nation in the western Pacific to give up their children for adoption in the U.S. He faces 62 charges in Arkansas, Arizona and Utah.

University of Arkansas

Shennel Douglas is a nursing student at the University of Central Arkansas in Conway. She says she hesitated when deciding to study in the U.S. after watching U.S. police shootings of unarmed civilians on television at home in the Caribbean.

"Coming to UCA, my main concern was being, what should I say, marginalized? Because not only am I an international student, but also I’m a black international student." 

There are now less international students on American college campuses than any time in the last decade.

rohwer
astate.edu

A day after President Donald Trump reversed his administration's policy of separating undocumented children from their families at the border with Mexico, officials from the United States Department of Health and Human Services were in Arkansas Thursday visiting two government-owned facilities as possible detention sites for unaccompanied migrant children. 

One facility, a former United States Department of Agriculture facility in the Delta town of Kelso, sits less than two miles north of the former Japanese-American internment camp in Rohwer. 

Second Congressional District candidate Clarke Tucker (D).
clarketucker.com

U.S. House hopeful Clarke Tucker, D-Ark, is opposing the possible use of Arkansas facilities to house migrant children and families detained at the U.S.-Mexico border and rejecting his opponent's claims he's in lock-step with Democratic national figures. While President Donald Trump has ordered a halt to his zero-tolerance policy of separating children from their families at the southern border, federal officials are still planning to scout potential detainment sites in Arkansas on Thursday, including the Little Rock Air Force Base.

U.S. Senator John Boozman in the Republican Party of Arkansas headquarters in 2016 during a campaign interview.
KUAR News

Arkansas’s senior U.S. Senator John Boozman is calling for a stop to the Trump administration’s zero tolerance policy to separate children from their parents at the border. Boozman was one of 13 Republican Senators on Tuesday to sign a letter addressed to Attorney General Jeff Sessions, saying immigration policy must be consistent with "ordinary human decency" and putting the blame for the "immediate cause of the crisis" on the Attorney General’s new policy.

Tom Cotton
Michael Hibblen / KUAR News

U.S. Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., says some of the immigrant children who are being separated from the adults they are entering the country with at the border with Mexico are not actually related.

Speaking Tuesday on the nationally-syndicated radio program The Hugh Hewitt Show, Cotton was skeptical that many of the 2,000-plus children separated from their parents since April are relatives.

U.S. Rep. French Hill speaking at a meeting of the House Financial Services Committee on March 22, 2016.
C-SPAN

U.S. Rep. French Hill (R-Ark.) says current immigration law justifies the Trump administration's decision to implement a zero tolerance policy that separates children from their parents if they illegally cross the border with Mexico. However, Hill says he does not support children being separated from their families and is urging Congress to pass legislation to fix the problem, while putting the blame on past presidential administrations for the creation of the law.

Arkansas’s attorney general spoke Friday at one of the nation’s most prominent gatherings of conservatives. CPAC, or the Conservative Political Action Conference, describes itself as the “birthplace of modern conservatism.” Ronald Regan was its inaugural keynote speaker in 1974.

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Children of immigrant families fare worse in Arkansas than those in most other states, according to a report released Tuesday.

The “Race for Results: Building a Path to Opportunity for All Children” report says 69 percent of Arkansas’s children who are either immigrants themselves or have at least one parent born outside of the country are growing up in low-income families. Rich Huddleston, Executive Director of Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families said he hopes this data will inspire policy changes.

Tom Cotton
Michael Hibblen / KUAR News

Some of Arkansas’s top elected officials – all Republicans – are generally supportive of President Trump’s decision to end the Deferred Action for Child Arrivals program in six months barring Congressional action. Meanwhile the state’s Democrats are offering a full rebuke and condemning attempts to use DACA beneficiaries as a political football for broader immigration policy changes.

Daniel Breen / KUAR News

Supporters of a program that allows undocumented children to stay in the U.S. are urging Arkansas’s Attorney General to change her position on the issue.

A large group of supporters and recipients of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program crowded into the Little Rock office of Attorney General Leslie Rutledge on Tuesday. They met with Carl Vogelpohl, Rutledge’s Chief of Staff, and presented him with a petition organized by the Arkansas United Community Coalition.

RAISE Act Senator Tom Cotton
Getty Images / NPR

President Donald Trump was joined by U.S. Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., at a White House news conference on Wednesday to tout an overhaul of the nation’s immigration system. Republican Georgia Sen. David Perdue also will co-sponsor the bill.

Governor Asa Hutchinson
Michael Hibblen / KUAR News

Gov. Asa Hutchinson says he's concerned about a draft proposal to use National Guard troops from Arkansas to round up unauthorized immigrants.

The Republican governor said Friday he hasn't had any contact from the Trump administration about a draft Department of Homeland Security memo obtained by The Associated Press calling for mobilizing as many as 100,000 National Guard troops from Arkansas and 10 other states.

A DHS official has described the document as a very early draft that was not seriously considered and never brought to the secretary for approval.

File photo: Then U.S. Representative Tom Cotton (R-4th District) at the Clinton School of Public Service (2013).
Michael Hibblen / KUAR News

Arkansas’s Congressional delegation is generally supportive of President Donald Trump’s order on immigration. However, they called for clarifying the position for two groups: green card holders and immigrants with a history service to the U.S. military.

Senator Tom Cotton first reacted to the President’s move on Twitter. He said the characterization of the executive order as a “Muslim ban” amounts to “fake news.”

State Rep. Dave Wallace (R-Leachville).
arkansashouse.org

A bus fatally crashed in Louisiana this weekend while transporting immigrants in the country illegally to a job center owned by a member of the Arkansas House of Representatives.