Aaron Reichlin-Melnick

Aaron Reichlin-Melnick is a Policy Analyst at the American Immigration Council, where he works primarily on immigration court issues and the intersection of immigration law and policy. He previously worked as a Staff Attorney at the Council, working on impact litigation, Freedom of Information Act litigations, and practice advisories. Prior to joining the Council, he was an Immigrant Justice Corps Fellow placed as a Staff Attorney at the Immigration Law Unit of The Legal Aid Society in New York City, representing immigrants placed in removal proceedings because of a prior criminal conviction. Aaron holds a J.D. from the Georgetown University Law Center and a B.A. in Politics and East Asian Studies from Brandeis University.

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After Shutdown Loss, Trump Doubles Down on Immigration in His New Budget

After Shutdown Loss, Trump Doubles Down on Immigration in His New Budget

After weeks of tense negotiations, Congress averted a second government shutdown last month by reaching a bipartisan agreement on the Fiscal Year (FY) 2019 budget—a budget which gave President Trump very little of his border demands. Undeterred, the president made a budget request for the next fiscal year on Monday. He called for $8.6 billion […]

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DHS Secretary Denies Responsibility for Family Separation, Asks Congress to Limit Asylum Protections

DHS Secretary Denies Responsibility for Family Separation, Asks Congress to Limit Asylum Protections

In a combative hearing before Congress on Wednesday, Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen testified for the first time since Democrats became the majority in the House of Representatives. During the House Homeland Security Committee hearing, Nielsen refused to admit culpability in family separation, denied reports that asylum seekers are being turned away […]

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Government Officials Deflect Responsibility for Family Separation at Congressional Hearing

Government Officials Deflect Responsibility for Family Separation at Congressional Hearing

At an oversight hearing on family separation in front of the House Judiciary Committee on Tuesday, government officials from four different agencies dug in against criticisms and denied any accountability for the Trump administration’s family separation policy. All but one of the officials admitted under questioning that they had not raised any objection to family […]

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Risky ‘Remain in Mexico’ Policy Faces Legal Challenges

Risky ‘Remain in Mexico’ Policy Faces Legal Challenges

The Department of Homeland Security began implementing a dramatic new policy last month requiring asylum seekers to return to Mexico to await immigration court hearings. Many denounced the so-called “Migrant Protection Protocols,” (MPP) highlighting the extreme dangers that migrants in Mexico face when forced to remain on the southern side of the border. Last week, […]

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Multiple Lawsuits Filed Against Trump’s National Emergency Declaration

Multiple Lawsuits Filed Against Trump’s National Emergency Declaration

Speaking from the Rose Garden on Friday, President Trump invoked the National Emergency Act after Congress refused to provide full funding for additions to the U.S.-Mexico border wall. By declaring a national emergency, the president could potentially bypass Congress and pull from Department of Defense military construction funds to build new wall. As the president […]

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Trump Declares National Emergency to Fund His Border Wall

Trump Declares National Emergency to Fund His Border Wall

Following three weeks of spending negotiations, Congress passed a budget deal on Thursday to fund the federal government through the end of September. Even though it did not include the money President Trump demanded to build a border wall, he signed the deal and then immediately declared a national emergency in order to reprogram funding […]

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Trump’s State of the Union Speech Reflects a Fundamental Misunderstanding of Immigration

Trump’s State of the Union Speech Reflects a Fundamental Misunderstanding of Immigration

Speaking before Congress and the nation Tuesday evening, President Trump once again promised bipartisanship and instead delivered division. When it came to immigration, the president neither offered an olive branch nor acknowledged the devastating effects of his administration’s actions to date. Rather than offer solutions to the actual problems facing immigrants across the country, his […]

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Setting the Record Straight: Asylum Seekers Show Up for Court

Setting the Record Straight: Asylum Seekers Show Up for Court

Immigration restrictionists have often repeated a bold and erroneous claim: that there is a serious problem of asylum seekers who come to the U.S. border and disappear once released from detention. But both fact-checkers and independent studies show this is not true. In reality, the vast majority of asylum seekers diligently attend all of their […]

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Department of Homeland Security Blocks H-2B Visas for Filipinos, Dominicans, and Ethiopians

Department of Homeland Security Blocks H-2B Visas for Filipinos, Dominicans, and Ethiopians

Citing high rates of visa overstays, on January 18 the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) published a new rule mostly barring nationals from the Dominican Republic, the Philippines, and Ethiopia from receiving certain temporary worker visas. The U.S. territory of Guam is likely to be most impacted as it relies on large numbers of Filipino workers. […]

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Trump Administration’s Immigration Proposal Is Dead on Arrival

Trump Administration’s Immigration Proposal Is Dead on Arrival

President Trump went in front of the public on Saturday and claimed he was going to propose a “compromise” to end the ongoing government shutdown. Instead of offering a bipartisan bill that would protect Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and Temporary Protected Status (TPS) recipients from deportation, the 1300-page bill unveiled Monday night was […]

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