The Immigration Committee

Immigration policies and practices have long raised important constitutional questions and concerns.  For instance, the Constitution sets boundaries on who can enforce immigration law and how, and provides important protections to noncitizens, including the rights to due process and habeas corpus, equal protection, and Fourth Amendment safeguards against illegal searches and seizures.  Over the years, The Constitution Project has released a variety of reports and recommendations, and conducted policy advocacy to protect constitutional safeguards for immigrants and throughout immigration proceedings.  This work has included:

  • Promoting due process rights within immigration proceedings and urging that reliance on immigration detention be limited;
  • Advocating for access to counsel for individuals in immigration proceedings; and
  • Educating the public and decision makers of the post 9/11 abuses of immigration law as a counterterrorism tool, and working to end such policies.

The recent Supreme Court decision in Arizona v. United States, a closely watched case in which the federal government successfully challenged some, but not all provisions of Arizona’s controversial immigration law (SB 1070), is a significant development, but far from the end of the national immigration debate.  Immigration policies and practices at the federal, state, and local levels – and the ongoing tugs of war between and among those entities over who can enforce immigration law and how – continue to raise important constitutional questions and concerns.  In his opinion in Arizona, Justice Kennedy urged that our quest for answers to those questions take the form of a “searching, thoughtful, rational civic discourse.”  TCP’s Immigration Committee, including policy experts, legal practitioners and former government officials with broad experience and widely divergent views, are eager to make a meaningful contribution to such a discourse.


Eleanor Brown
Associate Professor, George Washington University School of Law; Schwartz Fellow, New America Foundation; former Reginald F. Lewis Fellow, Harvard Law School; former Chairman, Jamaica Trade Board; Board of Directors of several publicly traded Caribbean companies

Hon. Bruce J. Einhorn
Director, Professor of Law and Director, Asylum and Refugee Law Clinic, Pepperdine University; Member, ABA National Commission on Immigration; Of Counsel, Wolfsdorf Immigration Law Group; U.S. Immigration Judge, Los Angeles, California, 1990-2007; Attorney and Deputy Director in charge of Litigation, Office of Special Investigations, U.S. Department of Justice, 1979-1990

Prakash Khatri
President and CEO, KPK Global Solutions, LLC; Attorney at Law, Khatri Law Firm; first Ombudsman for Citizenship and Immigration Services, Department of Homeland Security, 2003-2008; Manager, Immigration Compliance Department for Walt Disney World Co., 1998-2003

Doris Meissner
Senior Fellow and Director, US Immigration Policy Program, Migration Policy Institute; Commissioner, U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service, 1993-2000; Senior Associate, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, 1986-1992

Dr. Louis Michael Seidman
Carmack Waterhouse Professor of Constitutional Law, Georgetown University Law Center

Neal R. Sonnett
Former Assistant United States Attorney and Chief, Criminal Division, Southern District of Florida; Past President, National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers; Past Chair, American Bar Association Criminal Justice Section and American Bar Association Coordinating Committee on Immigration Law

William H. Taft, IV
Of Counsel, Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson; Legal Adviser, U.S. Department of State, 2001‐2005; U.S. Ambassador to NATO, 1989-1992; Deputy Secretary of Defense, 1984-1989

John W. Whitehead
President and Founder, The Rutherford Institute; United States Supreme Court Bar; Supreme Court of Arkansas Bar; Supreme Court of Virginia Bar; United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth, Fifth, Seventh, and Ninth Circuits; various United States District Courts

Julie Myers Wood
President, ICS Consulting, LLC; Assistant Secretary, United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), 2006-2008

James W. Ziglar, Sr.
Senior Counsel, Van Ness Feldman; Senior Fellow and Advisor to the Board, Migration Policy Institute; Director, Human Rights First; Board of Directors, ImmigrationWorks USA; Director, National Immigration Forum, 2004-2005; Director, Migration Policy Institute, 2003-2005; Commissioner, Immigration and Naturalization Service, U.S. Department of Justice, 2001-2002; Sergeant at Arms, U.S. Senate, 1998-2001; Law Clerk to Associate Justice Harry A. Blackmun, U.S. Supreme Court (October Term 1972)

Former Members

Hon. Asa Hutchinson (2011-2014)
Senior Partner, Asa Hutchinson Law Group; Undersecretary, Department of Homeland Security, 2003-2005; Administrator, Drug Enforcement Administration, 2001-2003; Member of Congress (R-AR), 1997-2001; United States Attorney, Western District of Arkansas, 1982-1985

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