As a nation of immigrants, US immigration policy attracts considerable public attention. Since Trump’s administration took office, he has made a series of sweeping changes on immigration and his new immigration policy has provoked wide-spread criticism.
On 10 March 2017, the School of Law of City University of Hong Kong was honoured to have Professor Robert Schapiro, Dean of Emory University School of Law, to deliver a public lecture on a contemporary topic “President Trump and the Future of Immigration in the United States”.
The lecture was kicked off by the welcoming remarks of Professor Geraint Howells, Dean of CityU School of Law, who greeted the audience and then introduced Professor Schapiro.
“Two-thirds of people who are in the United States illegally have been there for 10 years or more, which makes the policy issues dealing with immigration quite complex,” Professor Schapiro pointed out at the beginning of his presentation. Sketching the history of immigration in the United States and the background of immigration law, Professor Schapiro emphasised controversial US immigration policy issues, including President Barack Obama’s “Deferred Action” programme, and the latest “Executive Order” and “New Executive Order” issued by President Donald Trump.
Professor Schapiro also shed light on the key legal issues that will define US immigration policy moving forward, including the scope of the President’s powers to target specific countries for special treatment in the immigration area and to permit the continued residence of certain people who are in the country illegally, the authority of courts to review Presidential action in the immigration area, and the role of states, such as Washington and Virginia, in challenging the Trump administration’s immigration policies.
More than 60 scholars, legal practitioners and students attended the lecture. After Professor Schapiro’s lecture, participants asked questions actively, which led to vivid interaction. To conclude the event, Professor Howells presented Professor Schapiro with a souvenir, thanking him for his insightful and inspiring speech.