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Mr. TREVOR. Yes. One of those men was a man who had been involved in a homicide case in Buffalo. I will be glad to supply the committee with clippings showing that record.
As a matter of fact, Senator Reynolds made a personal inspection of the deportation files in the Department and picked out, haphazard, some 50 cases, and he discussed them in the Senate on April 3 and 4, 1936. He can tell
what he found. Since the Commissioner seemed inclined to take exception to my remarks, those show cases where there were criminals.
Senator REYNOLDS. I think I understand what you are referring to. I have in my desk in the Senate chamber a pamphlet containing the names of about 50 aliens whose cases I examined at the Department. I have just sent over for that information, and I will be glad to bring it to the attention of the committee.
Mr. TREVOR. Mr. Chairman, Senator Reynolds has a record of cases of aliens who were in this country, who were criminals, and who have been permitted to leave the country so that they could return at once. They had been in the country more than 7 years, and they were, therefore, not deportable under the existing statutes, which should be amended. Those were criminals. The Senator has that list, and I wish that it might be put in the record in order that you may see the cases of aliens who were permitted to go out of the country and reenter, though they were unfit to be in the country in the first place, and, in my opinion, should have been deported.
Senator HERRING. I think we should have that record. While I was Governor of my State I had a survey made of the penitentiary to find the number of alien criminals. I released them, and they were sent out of the country. I had no difficulty in getting them deported.
Senator REYNOLDS. I wish we had more governors like the State of Iowa had at that time.
Mr. TREVOR. We know of a case where the Spanish counsul general secured the release of a criminal in order that he might go abroad and enlist in the Loyalist forces in Spain. It is our opinion that that was pretty close to a violation of neutrality by somebody.
Mr. HOUGHTELING. Did the Immigration Service have anything to do with that?
Mr. TREVOR. They permitted them to go out.
Mr. HOUGHTELING. Which I conceive to accomplish our duty in such cases. Deporting means sending them out. If they go out of their own accord and at their own expense, it seems to me the fact that they go out accomplishes the purpose.
Mr. TREVOR. Not necessarily. I want to say a word on that point. An alien who may be thoroughly undesirable and deportable under the law is frequently allowed to depart voluntarily, so that he can come right back as soon as he can get an immigration visa.
Mr. HOUGHTELING. Is he admitted?
Mr. TREVOR. He can be. Mr. Commissioner, do you remember the testimony you gave before the Appropriations Committee of the House in regard to those cases that were readmitted?
Mr. HOUGHTELING. When?
Mr. TREVOR. Last year. If not, I think that testimony should be incorporated in the hearings, in order that you may see exactly the situation to which I refer. It is all set out in the record, and Senator Reynolds is perfectly familiar with it.
Mr. HOUGHTELING. But you were talking about criminals.
Mr. TREVOR. I am talking about criminals of all kinds. Of course, it is my contention that a man who commits forgery or perjury to enter the United States is a criminal.
Mr. HOUGHTLING. You refer to deportable cases.
Mr. TREVOR. Yes; cases that are mandatorily deportable under the law. A good deal has been said about these cases of aliens who were guilty of very technical violations of the law. As a matter of fact, Senator, if you will look at that list of aliens Senator Reynolds had, you can form your own conclusions as to whether they are criminals or not. It is a most shocking list.
I will say this, Mr. Chairman---this has nothing to do with the present Commissioner, for I think the Commissioner tried to improve the situation over what it was when MacCormack was in charge-I endeavored to ascertain the number of alien criminals in jails that were deportable, but I could not get any response from the Department of Labor at that time. I had an investigation made of inhabitants of asylums, jails, and other institutions, and I will be most happy to put a copy of that before you. At the present moment I am employing a very distinguished scientist, who rendered great service to the House Immigration Committee in the investigation of 1921, to make a new survey, and we hope to publish it within the next few weeks, showing the situation that exists today.
Senator Holman. Showing the eleemosynary and public institutions? Mr. TREVOR. Yes.
Senator HOLMAN. We know the cost of maintaining public institutions is great and growing.
Mr. TREVOR. We hope to have factual data,
Mr. TREVOR. The whole Nation. I have written the various consuls in New York City from foreign nations for a statement regarding their regulations and laws concerning the entry of persons who are professional people, skilled laborers, and common laborers. We expect to publish those, in order that we may see what foreign nations are doing to protect their citizens and subjects from just the sort of thing we feel Americans should be protected from.
Mr. HOUGHTELING. May I say a word here to the Senator from Oregon?
Senator HERRING. Yes.
Mr. HOUGHTELING. The Dies bill, which passed the House of Representatives by a vote of 176 to 33, and failed because it did not come up in the Senate last year, provided for the relief of a certain number of specific cases of aliens closely related to American citizens or who had been in the country for over 10 years. These were substantial people, of good moral character, criminals and other undesirable were specifically excepted. But an amendment was introduced in the House of Representatives providing that any alien who had procured entry illegally by affidavit, or had procured entry papers by fraud, should be included among the hardship cases, provided he or she was a relative, either husband, wife, or child of an American citizen; but that no violator of the criminal clause of the 1917 act or any narcotic act or of the 1918 subversive elements act, should be included among those cases. That bill was a successor to a bill in a previous Congress which also failed of passage. By the end of that session a resolution was introduced and passed authorizing us to stay the deportation of those hardship cases. Such a resolution has been passed through the Congress at various terms or sessions of Congress.
Mr. TREVOR. Will you permit me to interject there? Mr. HOUGHTELING. Yes. Mr. TREVOR. Those resolutions have no force whatever in law. They are merely expressions of opinion by one House, and they constitute no reasonable justification for the continuance of those practices. I am sure the Department of Justice would sustain that. Would you contend they have legal force?
Mr. HOUGHTELING. I am one of the few members of the Government service who is not an attorney.
Senator HERRING. I would not want to say anything or have anything said here that would interfere with any department acting in accordance with a resolution of the Senate or House, because they are so seldom acted upon.
Mr. WARREN. That was a joint resolution passed by the House and Senate.
Mr. TREVOR. The law is very specific that certain cases should be deported. The fact remains that there are at least 4,000. The last figure I saw was something like 3,980. Mr. Shaughnessy can give you the exact figure.
Mr. HOUGHTELING. That was a year ago.
Mr. SHAUGHNESSY. There was a total of close to 6,000 in 5 years, and 3,200 have been disposed of.
Mr. TREVOR. When a case comes before the Bureau, there is no investigating force that goes out to determine how many of these people there are. I have reason to believe, but I am not prepared to offer evidence, that there are thousands of these illegal entrants.
May I go on with the testimony?
Mr. TREVOR. Exception was taken to the requirement that no immigration visa shall be issued to any applicant who shall fail to pass an intelligence test equivalent to a normal rating of American white stock. I think it was said that if the law was properly enforced it would be necessary to enact such a requirement as that.
It is my impression that Senator Reynolds, in drafting these bills, had in mind adding provisions that seemed to be necessary in order to get a better intelligence test of immigrants seeking to come into the United States. It is my impression-I may be wrong, and the Commissioner will correct me if I am—that in making the tests, if the person is a moron or ineligible for entry, the actual intelligence test rating they use now is for low-grade immigrants, instead of using normal American stock as the basis for the test. Is that true?
Mr. HOUGHTELING. I do not understand your point.
Mr. TREVOR. The point is that I am contending that normal American white stock ought to be the basis of intelligence, the average rating of American white stock, rather than the low-grade test, which I understand is the gage under which immigrants are now being permitted to enter the United States.
Mr. HoughTELING. Do you mean to get a visa?
Mr. TREVOR. Yes.
Mr. WARREN. Those tests are administered by doctors in the Public Health Service, who are ordered to the various consulates abroad, and a physical examination is given to the applicants. The test is prescribed by the Public Health Service.
Mr. TREVOR. But that test is not based on normal American white stock.
Mr. HOUGHTELING. It is to establish whether the applicant is or is not a person suffering from any physical disability.
Mr. TREVOR. And if they get by that test they are admitted.
Senator HERRING. Does not that phraseology apply to some particular race?
Mr. TREVOR. No.
Senator HOLMAN. If we could change that language I think it would improve it. I think the expression in the bill is an unhappy
Mr. TREVOR. Any way so that you will raise it from the standard of the present regulation. I am speaking from memory, from having read a report of the Public Health Service. In New York City, if you would go to the clinics they have there and see the class of immigrants who have been admitted, you would be shocked. And you can see them in the courts.
Senator HOLMAN. I have in mind going to Ellis Island. I should like to go there. If I should, what would I see? Would I get a cross section?
Mr. TREVOR. No. If you go to the courts in New York City you can see some of these people. If you would like, I will send you a marked copy of testimony of previous hearings regarding tests in relation to this matter. It will show the defects and weaknesses of the present system.
Now, section 5 of this bill or law covers cases of the readmission of aliens for the purpose of securing medical treatment. Under the law the Department is required to exclude people suffering from such diseases as trachoma. In one case a man secured a special ruling from the Secretary of Labor by which he was allowed to travel around the country while suffering from such a disease.
Senator Holman. When did that happen?
Mr. TREVOR. Under the present administration. Every hotel servant, every sleeping-car porter, wherever that man went, all kinds of people were exposed to that danger, and that was permitted under that special rule.
Senator HERRING. There is quite a difference of opinion as to that among medical men.
Mr. TREVOR. We have opinions from medical men in New York. Senator HERRING. You get it both ways.
Mr. TREVOR. If there is any doubt about it, it ought to be resolved in favor of the American people.
Mr. HOUGHTELING. We are excluding a good many trachoma cases, and often have to fight them in the courts.
Senator HOLMAN. You do not mind the fights?
Mr. HOUGHTELING. Oh, no. We like it.
Mr. TREVOR. The point is that we contend there is a strained interpretation of the act of 1917. The present Secretary has admitted people who were mandatorily excluded in subsequent acts. The act of October 16, 1918, excludes anarchists and similar classes of aliens. Yet under that interpretation, Emma Goldman was allowed to come into this country, and Thomas Mann was allowed to come into this country under a discretion contained in the law of 1917. They are certainly inadmissible under a proper interpretation of that law. Other very dangerous and subversive people were allowed to come in under such a ruling.
We think that Senator Reynolds is to be commended, and our organization does commend him, for putting that provision in his bill, so that nobody can interpret it as the act of 1917 has been interpreted.
I contend, and another witness who will come before this committee and who is thoroughly familiar with the facts, will show that in writing the ninth proviso it was the intent of Congress that persons temporarily detained, by reason of any physical disability, should be allowed to enter temporarily, under certain rules, to go to a hospital and to get the attention and treatment they need. That is why that the ninth proviso was put in the law of 1917 originally. It has been misinterpreted, and so we have people who have no business in the United States, who have no right to be in the country.
Mr. SHAUGHNESSY. May I say that the section to which Captain Trevor refers was submitted to Attorney General Mitchell, I think in 1931, and he held that the ninth proviso of section 3 of the act of 1917 was applicable and the act of October 16, 1916—that it included the act of 1916—and that the Secretary of Labor was acting strictly in accordance with the law in that interpretation.
Mr. TREVOR. Taking that to be a correct interpretation of that statute, then it would seem incumbent upon this committee to write this provision of Senator Reynolds' bill into law.
Mr. HOUGHTELING. May I read the ninth proviso of section 3? Section 3 is a long section specifying 25 or more classes of aliens who shall be excluded or deported. It is completed by about ten provisos making exceptions to a very general list.
The ninth proviso reads: Provided further, That the Commissioner of Immigration and Naturalization with the approval of the Secretary of Labor, shall issue rules and prescribe conditions, including the exaction of such bonds as may be necessary, to control and regulate the admission and return of otherwise inadmissible aliens applying for temporary admission.
“Otherwise inadmissible aliens” may be allowed to come into this country under that act.
Senator HERRING. I wonder if that was not intended to apply to Canadians. I lived in Detroit for several years, and we had many Canadians coming over from Canada. Hundreds of them used to come over.
Mr. HOUGHTELING. I am not familiar with the debates at the time of the passage of the 1917 act, which might throw some light on the intention of Congress; but the wording of the provision certainly gives the Commissioner of Immigration and Naturalization discretion to admit temporarily aliens who might not be otherwise admissible under the terms of that section.