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Title: Waiting on Congress: How State Legislators Proposed and Enacted 50 Different Solutions To the Problem of Illegal Immigration
Authors: Spaude, Ryan
Advisors: Valenzuela, Ali
Department: Woodrow Wilson School
Class Year: 2016
Abstract: The U.S. Congress has not passed a significant piece of immigration reform since IIRIRA in 1996. Over the past 20 years, legislators at the state, county, and municipal level have taken the lead on crafting policy that addresses illegal immigration or the presence of unauthorized immigrants. This thesis critically examines the arguments that have been used at the state level to promote new legislation in recent years, focusing on laws found in politically competitive states. Through two lines of research, I investigate the question of 1) what types of arguments have state legislators used the most frequently to enact legislation that deals with illegal immigration over the past two decades, and 2) what types of arguments are actually the most persuasive and generate the greatest support among members of the general public. A synthesis of my findings reveals that legislators are not, in fact, addressing the most important concerns of the American people on the issue of illegal immigration. Recommendations can be made for policy-makers at all levels of government, including members of Congress.
Extent: 89 pages
Type of Material: Princeton University Senior Theses
Language: en_US
Appears in Collections:Woodrow Wilson School, 1929-2017

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