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Gerald L. Neuman, Admissions and Denials: A Dialogic Introduction to the Immigration Law Symposium, 29 Conn. L. Rev. 1395 (1997).

Abstract: United States immigration law is currently in a state of upheaval. Three major statutes enacted in 1996 have produced changes in substance and procedure that affect every aspect of immigration practice. The effects of particular changes, and the interactive consequences of the multiple changes, cannot be fully foreseen, and they will occupy analysts, administrators and courts for years to come. The present Symposium offers a series of assessments of crucial aspects of immigration policy, as it exists and as it is evolving. The three transformative statutes are the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act ("AEDPA"), the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act ("PRA"), and the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act ("IIRAIRA"). The first two of these statutes were not primarily about immigration. AEDPA was a conjunction of two distinct legislative projects, with some additional immigration provisions tacked on. Its original purpose dealt with terrorism, both in the criminal context and in the immigration context, but it became the vehicle for the enactment of restrictive new rules on federal post-conviction relief for state prisoners. For immigration law, its significance lay in the creation of new procedures for the removal of alleged alien terrorists through secret proceedings, and in a group of unrelated immigration provisions, including restrictions on discretionary relief for deportable aliens, mandatory detention policy, and unprecedented limits on judicial review.