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TUESDAY, APRIL 27, 1937
UNITED STATES SENATE,
Washington, D.C. The subcommittee met, in the committee room, room 412, Senate Office Building, at 10 a. m., Senator Lewis B. Schwellenbach (chairman of subcommittee) presiding.
Present: Senator Schwellenbach (chairman).
Present also: Hon. Robert R. Reynolds, a Senator from the State of North Carolina.
Senator SCHWELLENBACH. Since this meeting was called, Senator Moore, a member of the subcommittee, was appointed on a committee to attend the funeral of Senator Bachman; and Senator Austin, the other member of the subcommittee, is a member of the Judiciary Committee, which is holding its first executive meeting this morning on the Supreme Court bill. If you have no objection, Senator Reynolds, I will proceed in the absence of the other members of the subcommittee. Perhaps they may come in later.
Senator REYNOLDS. That is perfectly all right, Mr. Chairman.
Senator SCHWELLENBACH. We have before us four bills, S. 1363, S. 1364, S. 1365, and S. 1366. I want to insert in the record first S. 1363, with the report which the Secretary of Labor has made on it; then following S. 1364, with the report of the Secretary of Labor thereon; then S. 1365, also with the report of the Secretary of Labor thereon; and S. 1366, with the report which the Secretary of Labor has made on the bill.
(Said S. 1363, S. 1364, S. 1365, and S. 1366, with the reports of the Secretary of Labor upon each of said bills, are here set forth in full, as follows:
[S. 1363, 75th Cong., 1st sess.) A BILL To provide for the deportation of aliens inimical to the public interest and aliens on relief Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That any alien or group of aliens whose presence in the United States is proclaimed by the President to be inimical to the public interest shall upon warrant of the Secretary of Labor be taken into custody and deported forthwith.
Sec. 2. The Secretary of Labor shall take into custody all aliens who have subsisted upon public or private relief for a period of six months after the enactment of this Act and deport them forthwith to the country of their origin: Provided, however, That if any alien desires to leave voluntarily for the country of his origin, or for another country, the Secretary of Labor is authorized to facilitate such voluntary departure.
DEPARTMENT OF LABOR,
Washington, February 11, 1937.
Hon. B. ,
, Committee on Immigration, United States Senate,
Washington, D. C. MY DEAR SENATOR RUSSELL: With your letter of the 9th instant you forwarded copy of bill S. 1363 and requested the views of the Immigration and Naturalization Service on this measure. The bill is entitled "To provide for the deportation of aliens inimical to the public interest and aliens on relief."
Section 1 of the bill provides for the deportation of any alien or group of aliens whose presence in the United States is proclaimed by the President to be inimical to the public interest. It would appear that the sponsor of the bill has overlooked the fact that existing law provides for the deportation of aliens whose presence in the United States may be considered as not being in the best interests of the country. As an example the statistics covering the past 10 years, set forth next hereafter, show, among other deportations, the following: Causes:
15, 464 Violation of narcotic laws.
953 Immoral classes
6, 008 Mental or physical defective.
8, 682 Likely to become a public charge.
3, 498 Anarchists and kindred classes.
34, 844 From the above it would appear that legislation of the type contained in section 1 of the bill is already in effect.
"The second and last section of the bill provides in substance that all aliens who have subsisted upon public or private relief for a period of 6 months after the enactment of the act shall be deported. It is rather doubted that the thought behind this provision of the bill has been carried through to a conclusion. A single example, it is believed, will be sufficient to show the impractical effect of such a law.
Take the case of an alien who 25 years ago was lawfully admitted to the United States for permanent residence after complying with all the requirements of the laws governing the admission of aliens. In the meantime the alien has married, possibly a native-born citizen woman, and has brought up a large family of American citizens. He has not acquired United States citizenship because of lack of funds, inability to meet the rather exacting educational qualifications, and so forth. Through no fault of his own-such as the result of accident, illness, and so forth-he has been unable to continue in employment and has been on public or private relief for a period of 6 months.
Surely it cannot be wisely argued because of the temporary misfortune of this worthy person that he should be deported from the United States, thereby permanently separating him from his family and in addition depriving them of the future support of their husband and father.
Hundreds of cases of the kind above set forth could be cited, but it would appear that this section of the bill would produce so many inhuman results that further discussion is deemed unnecessary. Sincerely yours,
(S. 1364, 75th Cong., 1st sess.) A BILL To provide for the registration of aliens in the United States and for other purposes Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That there is hereby established an interdepartmental committee, to be known as the Alien Registration Board and hereinafter referred to as the Board, which shall be composed of one representative designated by the Secretary of State, one representative designated by the Attorney General, one representative designated by the Postmaster General, and one representative designated by the Secretary of Labor. The representative designated by the Secretary of State shall be ex-officio Chairman of the Board.
SEC. 2. The heads of the Departments hereinbefore mentioned may temporarily assign other members of their departmental staffs to render expert advice or assistance to the Board: Provided, however, That no person designated as a member of the Board, or as an expert attached thereto, shall receive additional compensation to that which he already receives.
Sec. 3. It shall be the duty of the Board to prescribe rules, regulations, forms, and procedure for the taking of a Nation-wide official registration and fingerprint record of all aliens now in the United States, except that diplomatic representatives of foreign nations and consular officers and members of their official staff duly accredited or recognized as such by the Government of the United States, and officials of foreign governments traveling under diplomatic passports, shall be exempted from the provisions of this Act.
SEC. 4. No immigration visa shall be issued to any alien seeking to enter the United States unless said alien has been fingerprinted in triplicate: One copy of the fingerprint record to be utilized by the consul in ascertaining whether or not the person making application for entry is the person whose name is set forth in the application and whether or not the applicant has a criminal record or other statutory disqualification which would exclude him from entering the United States; the second copy of the fingerprint record to be attached to the alien's immigration visa to provide for verification of the immigrant's identity upon arrival at a port of entry of the United States; and the third copy of the fingerprint record, together with such other information as may be required by the Board, to be sent directly to the Division of Identification of the Department of Justice for filing in the alien section of its noncriminal records.
SEC. 5. On July 1, 1937, or at the earliest possible date thereafter, the President shall proclaim the rules and regulations under which every alien shall apply for registration at a United States post office and be fingerprinted, and supply such other information as may be called for by the Board respecting the alien's status, occupation, duration of stay, and intention to remain or depart from the United States. Upon registration, which shall be in duplicate, one copy shall be mailed to the Commissioner of Immigration and Naturalization of the Department of Labor, Washington, District of Columbia, and the second copy shall be mailed to the Director of the Division of Identification of the Department of Justice, Washington, District of Columbia, for filing in the alien section of its noncriminal records. The Commissioner of Immigration shall issue a registration card to each alien registrant, bearing a distinctive number and copy of the fingerprints of the alien, the said registration card to be mailed to the address given by the alien upon registration.
Sec. 6. The postmaster in any United States post office, or any employee in such post office designated by him, at which a registration shall be filed, shall collect a fee of $1 for each first registration, and subsequently 50 cents for each renewal thereof. The funds so collected shall be turned into the general fund of the Treasury in such manner as may be prescribed by the Board.
Sec. 7. It shall be the duty of every alien in the United States, who has been registered as hereinbefore provided to notify the Commissioner of Immigration and Naturalization of the United States of every change of address, with a statement as to whether the change of address is permanent or temporary. If the change of address is permanent, it shall be the duty of the alien to turn in his registration card at the nearest post office and make application in accordance with regulations prescribed by the Board for the issuance of a new card; and every alien in the United States shall renew his registration annually at such dates as may be designated on his registration card.
SEC. 8. It shall be the duty of the Postmaster General, with the assistance of the Attorney General, to provide for instructions whereby postal employees may, be instructed in the manner of taking fingerprints upon sensitive paper approved by the Division of Identification of the Department of Justice.
SEC. 9. The Attorney General shall instruct the Director of the Division of Identification of the Department of Justice to create a section in the Bureau of Identification to be known as the section of alien registration.
SEC. 10. The Board immediately upon its creation shall prepare estimates of appropriations necessary for putting into effect the provisions of this Act, and shall submit the same to the heads of the Departments referred to in section 1 of this Act, for transmittal to the Director of the Budget with a recommendation for immediate action upon such supplementary appropriation as may be required.
SEC. 11. Any alien who shall fail to comply with the provisions of this Act shall be punished by a fine of not more than $10,000 or imprisonment of not more than five years, or both, and, upon the payment of the fine or the completion of sentence, the alien shall be taken into custody on a warrant issued by the Secretary of Labor and deported forthwith from the United States.
Sec. 12. This Act may be cited as the Immigration and Alien Registration Act of 1937.