Posted by | February 18, 2012 11:44 | Filed under: Top Stories

by Stuart Shapiro

With the Arizona primary one of the next two on the Republican calendar, immigration is certain to pop up again as an issue.  The two front runners, Governor Romney and Senator Santorum have been particularly hard line, coupling the usual rhetoric about an imaginary fence with threats to deport all illegal immigrants.  Libertarian Shikha Dalmia raises an interesting point:

As a vehement anti-Bolshevist, she knew that she would die waiting in line if she applied for permission to permanently relocate to America, although that’s exactly what she intended to do. Temporary tourist visas were easier to land, but only for those who could prove they didn’t plan to settle here. So what did Rand do? She committed perjury. She convinced an American visa officer that she had a fiancé waiting for her in Russia whom she intended to marry after a six-month visit with her relatives in Chicago.

But Rand instead married an American citizen in 1929, gaining a path to citizenship. According to Mimi Gladstein’s biography, Rand timed her wedding before her visa, which she had gotten extended, finally expired.

However, others doubt that Uncle Sam would have handed a three-year extension to a Russian passport holder, raising suspicions that Rand might have been—gasp!—an illegal immigrant when she got married.

One wonders what Santorum and Romney would have done with Rand. (If it meant getting Ron Paul out of the race, maybe they would have deported her).  I suspect that they would have treated Rand differently than they propose treating the millions of poor Latin Americans who are here illegally now.

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Copyright 2012 Liberaland
By: Stuart Shapiro

Stuart is a professor and the Director of the Public Policy
program at the Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy at Rutgers
University. He teaches economics and cost-benefit analysis and studies
regulation in the United States at both the federal and state levels.
Prior to coming to Rutgers, Stuart worked for five years at the Office
of Management and Budget in Washington under Presidents Clinton and
George W. Bush.