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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Wilson’s apology doesn’t end ‘You lie!’ flap

WASHINGTON – The congressman who heckled President Barack Obama during a televised address Wednesday night found that although the president accepted his apology Thursday, the furor over his outburst did not let up. The shout of “You lie!” by Rep. Joe Wilson, R-S.C., during the president’s speech on health care was a significant break in decorum.

3 adults, child rescued in wilderness search

Four Mexican nationals, including one child, were rescued from a mountain near the Pasayten Wilderness in north-central Washington and hospitalized Monday after a search by local, state, U.S. and Canadian law enforcement officials. An investigation is trying to determine whether they are illegal immigrants. Rescue units searched for the four by air, all-terrain vehicle, horseback and on foot after the Royal Canadian Mounted Police received a 911 call Sunday evening from someone who spoke only Spanish.

Obama puts immigration reform on hold

GUADALAJARA, Mexico – Locked in a health care debate that is claiming much of his energy, President Barack Obama conceded that a push to overhaul the nation’s immigration system will have to wait until 2010 and even then will prove a major political test. Obama suggested it would be too ambitious to aim for passage of new immigration laws before the end of 2009, at a time when he will be confronting “a pretty big stack of bills.”

Gregoire to remove illegal immigrant inmates

SEATTLE – Gov. Chris Gregoire is moving forward with clearing Washington prisons of illegal immigrants to save money, but at what may be a slower rate than originally planned after lawmakers failed to pass a bill that would have hastened the process. In a letter sent last week to the state Department of Corrections, Gregoire outlined the state’s approach to transferring illegal immigrant prisoners to federal custody. Her proposal, though, does not give the state as much authority as the original bill.

Napolitano targets U.S. employers in immigration effort

WASHINGTON – Stepping into the political minefield of immigration reform, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano soon will direct federal agents to emphasize targeting U.S. employers for arrest and prosecution in connection with the illegal laborers who sneak into the country to work for them, department officials said Monday. The shift in emphasis will be outlined in revamped field guidelines issued to Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents as early as this week, several officials familiar with the change said. The policy is in keeping with comments that President Barack Obama made during his campaign for office, when he said past enforcement efforts failed because they focused on illegal immigrants rather than the companies that hired them.

When immigrants go home, America loses

A key measure of the nation’s economic health is its ability to attract capital, not only the financial kind, but capital of the human sort. The immigration debate in recent years has often discounted the contribution of new arrivals, while sometimes implying that the United States would be better off if most immigrants would simply go home.

Illegal worker measure dies fast

BOISE – North Idaho Sen. Mike Jorgenson proposed far-reaching legislation Monday to punish Idaho employers who hire illegal immigrants, but the bill soon died. Jorgenson said Monday that the Senate State Affairs Committee chairman, state Sen. Curt McKenzie, R-Nampa, told him the bill wouldn’t be scheduled for a hearing in the committee, which means it’s dead.

Deportations alarm migrant advocates

MOUNT VERNON, Wash. – When immigration agents arrested 16 farmworkers in a mass arrest of illegal immigrants early this year, legal advocates raced to find interpreters for some of the men, who spoke only a language called Mixtec. But by the time an interpreter was found, most of the men were on their way out of the country after signing away their rights to contest deportation – a procedure they might not have understood.

Fewer Mexicans leaving to seek jobs

MEXICO CITY – Migration from Mexico, mainly to the United States, has fallen dramatically as fewer Mexicans leave their country to look for work abroad amid a global economic downturn, the government said Thursday. The net outflow of Mexicans – both legal and illegal – declined by over 50 percent in the 12 months ending in August 2008, compared the same period a year earlier, said the Eduardo Sojo, president of the board of Mexico’s National Statistics, Geography and Information Institute.

Visa program could help spur Idaho jobs

BOISE – A new Boise company hopes to help Idaho businesses market their ideas by raising money through a federal immigration law that allows foreign investors with $500,000 to invest in rural or high-unemployment areas to obtain visas. Invest Idaho Innovations LLC, called I-Cubed, will help create new companies and jobs in Idaho by making it possible for public research institutions and private companies to market their innovations, said chief executive Miles Mahoney.

Gonzaga professor’s work focuses on struggles of immigrant youth

Borrowing a lesson in hospitality from a centuries-old Christmas tradition, a Gonzaga University professor will call attention this month to the plight of refugees and immigrants and asks the community to find room at the inn. The festival of Las Posadas, a Hispanic celebration dating to the 16th century, re-enacts Joseph and Mary’s journey to Bethlehem and their attempt to find lodging before the birth of Jesus.

UI researcher won’t be deported

A University of Idaho researcher is back on the job, a year after a tangled immigration case left her unemployed and facing deportation. Katarzyna Dziewanowska, a Polish scientist who has studied possible ways to counter bioterrorism, was granted authorization to return to work in September. In addition, federal immigration officials reopened her application for permanent residency.

Studio 137 - The Difference

"The Difference" was produced by Mr. T's fifth-grade class at Cooper Elementary and tells the story of students' effort to help two Burmese families resettle in Spokane. Cover photograph by Brian Plonka, The Spokesman-Review.

A new citizen

George Mendoza, the first principal at Virgie Robinson Elementary School in Pasco, became a U.S. citizen along with 47 other immigrants at a naturalization ceremony in Spokane Tuesday

John Malito

Man faces deportation after five decades in U.S.

Immigration reform’s chances? Borderline

Like a cross-border tunnel, a bipartisan immigration bill surfaced last week. Apparently, it was just about as welcome. President Bush and senators from both sides of the aisle Thursday unveiled a 360-page proposal that attempts to balance the requirements of employers, immigrant employees, their families, and those justly concerned about the dire security implications of a near-open border.