Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Normalization with Cuba and immigration law

Assuming normalization of relations with Cuba goes through, I wonder if that will lead to the end of the weird immigration policy we have for Cubans. Essentially under the "wet feet, dry feet" policy, any Cuban who makes it to U.S. soil is automatically legalized. There are no Cuban illegal immigrants in the U.S. because under U.S. law any Cuban here are automatically on a path to legalization (which would be called "amnesty" if it applied to any other Latin American nationality). Cubans are the only nationality that gets that benefit from the U.S. government. (Which is why I am continuously frustrated when the press treats Cuban-Americans like Marco Rubio as having some special insight into immigration policy).

Without the cold-war holdover relationship between the U.S. and Cuba, I don't see how Cubans' special treatment under the immigration rules can continue.