January 28th, 2013
08:20 PM ET

Boy Scouts reconsidering policy against gay membership

By Ashley Fantz, CNN

(CNN) - The Boy Scouts of America is considering changing its longstanding policy against allowing openly gay members, according to a news release from the organization.

The organization, which has 2.7 million members, is "potentially discussing" doing away with its national policy after months of protest, including hundreds of angry Eagle Scouts renouncing their hard-earned awards and mailing back their red-white-and-blue medals.

Many parents of Scouts across America found the national policy excluding gays confusing - and at odds with basic scouting ideals.

Social media were abuzz with outrage over the policy; gay men who used to be Scouts spoke out in first-person blogs. On her TV talk show, Ellen DeGeneres featured a California Scout who had been denied his Eagle rank because he is gay.

Members of the organization's national board are expected to bring up the issue at a regularly scheduled biannual meeting in February. Any change would be announced after that.

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Filed under: Sexual orientation • Who we are
January 28th, 2013
04:08 PM ET

Fast Facts: Immigration in the United States

By CNN Library

(CNN) - On Monday, a bipartisan group of senators announced a new immigration effort in Congress before a scheduled speech by President Barack Obama on immigration reform.

Here are facts on immigration, by the numbers:

- U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement detained 409,849 undocumented immigrants in 2012.

- The estimated total number of undocumented immigrants in the U.S. was 11.5 million in 2011.

- The number of people who obtained legal permanent resident status in 2011 was 1,062,040. The top 10 countries were Mexico, China, India, Philippines, Dominican Republic, Cuba, Vietnam, South Korea, Haiti and Canada.

- 59% of undocumented immigrants are from Mexico (6.8 million). The other top countries are El Salvador (660,000), Guatemala (520,000), Honduras (380,000),  China (280,000), Philippines (270,000), India (240,000), South Korea (230,000), Ecuador (210,000)  and Vietnam (170,000).

- 2.8 million illegal immigrants reside in California, while 1.8 million live in Texas.

- In the first half of 2012, 41 legislatures enacted 114 bills and adopted 92 resolutions that address legal immigrants, migrant and seasonal workers, refugees or undocumented immigrants.

Asians, more than Latinos, are largest group of new arrivals in U.S.


2008: The Department of Homeland Security apprehends 792,000 foreign nationals - 88% of those were natives of Mexico. Immigration and Customs Enforcement apprehends 379,000 people.

2008: DHS removes 359,000 undocumented immigrants from the U.S., sending 69% of them to Mexico, 8% to Honduras and 7.7% to Guatemala.

2008: 811,000 illegals accept offers to return to their home countries without being forcibly removed.

2008: 97,100 criminals who are also undocumented immigrants are removed from the U.S. by DHS; 36% of those were convicted of drug-related crimes.

2009: The number of children born to at least one unauthorized immigrant parent is 350,000 - 8% of all U.S. births.

2010: Number of unauthorized immigrants in the U.S. labor force is 8 million - 5.2% of the labor force.

2010: 1.04 million people receive legal permanent resident status - 139,120 of them were born in Mexico, 70,863 in China and 58,173 were born in the Philippines.

2011: ICE removes 396,906 undocumented immigrants from the U.S. - 216,698 (nearly 55%) have been convicted of felonies or misdemeanors, the largest number in the agency's history.

April 23, 2012: The Pew Hispanic Center announces that the net migration from Mexico to the U.S. has stopped and possibly even reversed. They note that from 2005 to 2010, about 1.4 million Mexicans immigrated to the U.S. and about 1.4 million Mexican immigrants and their U.S.-born children moved from the U.S. to Mexico.

Sources: Bureau of Labor Statistics; Department of Homeland Security; National Conference of State Legislatures; Pew Hispanic Center; U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement

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Filed under: Asian in America • Immigration • Latino in America • Politics • Who we are
Senators outline bipartisan immigration plan
January 28th, 2013
10:30 AM ET

Senators outline bipartisan immigration plan

By Political Unit, CNN

Washington (CNN) – A bipartisan group of senators plans to announce Monday an agreement on reforming the nation’s immigration system, which President Barack Obama has called a priority in his second term in office.

The eight lawmakers’ proposal includes provisions for a path to citizenship for immigrants already living in the United States, and guest worker and employment verification systems.

What's in the plan?

The proposal in the Senate and Obama’s trip Tuesday to Las Vegas, where he’ll press for immigration reform, signal the largest movement in years for major reforms to the county’s immigration system.

Aides say the president's Tuesday remarks will touch on the blueprint he's detailed in the past: improving border security, cracking down on employers who hire undocumented workers, and creating a pathway to "earned" citizenship for undocumented immigrants.

Those align closely with what the eight senators laid out in a framework of their legislation, though specific details have yet to be hammered out. According to the framework obtained by CNN, the lawmakers will push four “legislative pillars” containing mainly broad stroke measures:

Read the full post on CNN's Political Ticker blog