Recent Shifts in the Volume, Nature, and Scope of State Immigration Policies in the United States
Keywords:immigration legislation, federalism, immigration control, immigration integration, policy research
We conducted a comprehensive categorization of state-level immigration policies from 2005–2014 and described for this period the nature of growth in state-level legislative activity, the ideological directions of the policies pursued, the breadth of topic areas covered, and the influences of states’ geographical location, political party orientation, and historical experiences with immigration. Our assessment shows that while all states actively participated in this area of policy expansion, there also is substantial state-level variation in the underlying principles of implementation. Furthermore, past and current experiences with immigration and political party control of state legislatures, rather than proximity to the U.S. border, shaped the respective policy agendas adopted by states.