Rice University

Events at Rice

Thesis Defense

Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies
Political Science

Speaker: James Hedrick
Doctoral Candidate

Immigration Policy in the American States: Attitudes, Adoption, and Outcomes

Friday, March 31, 2017
9:30 AM  to 11:00 AM

126  Herzstein Hall


Although typically thought of as a federal issue, states and municipalities have dominated immigration policymaking over the last decade. In addition, despite overwhelming media coverage of restrictive policies in states such as Arizona or cities like Hazelton, PA, many subnational governments have actually expanded the rights of immigrants and increased their access to government services and bene ts. For example, states as diverse as California, Texas, and Kansas o er in-state tuition to undocumented students (Krueger, 2005), while over a hundred U.S. cities and even some states have adopted so-called "sanctuary" policies that restrict the ability of law enforcement to inquire about citizenship status (NILC, 2008). Other states and cities have expanded immigrant access to a variety of services, everything from healthcare centers to ID cards, prescription drug bene fits to language services, employment protections to support for victims of human trafficking. Even in the face of essentially universal public opposition to increased immigration and immigrant access to social services (Cornelius and Rosenblum, 2005), integrative pro-immigrant policies represent approximately 50% of state laws passed since 2005 (Nicholson-Crotty and Nicholson-Crotty, 2011). In this dissertation, I intend to examine three issues related to state and local immigration policy: immigration attitudes, immigration policy adoption, and the impacts of subnational immigration policy.

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