A beautiful muslim family walks down the corridor to board their plane. They are excited and all smiling.
A beautiful muslim family walks down the corridor to board their plane. They are excited and all smiling. Credit: FatCamera / iStockPhoto

Black America for Immigration Reform, a new group in Washington, D.C., that works on immigration policy, has been making waves in the political world. Even though the name sounds progressive, the group’s founder, William W. Chip, is a white person with a history of making controversial racial posts. The organization’s primary goal is to limit immigrants, which many groups have criticized.

Chip served as Donald Trump’s senior counselor at the Department of Homeland Security, and is the only person named as an agent for the new group. Chip, who claims that more immigration could hurt Black Americans, has worked as a tax attorney and written for the Center for Immigration Studies, which wants to limit immigration.

Politico, which broke the story about the new group, noted that some see the start of this non-profit as an attempt to get more people to agree that immigration hurts Black workers, and the federal government should limit immigrants.

Critics argue that it might be a deceptive way to stop efforts to overhaul immigration. Chip claimed that he assembled the group on behalf of two Black board members of the Center for Immigration Studies, T. Willard Fair and Frank Morris. He asserted that he wouldn’t sit on the board, but he, Fair, and Morris will work with three other group members.

Chip said that any study that says there should be less immigration often gets pushback from the mainstream media and left-leaning groups, who sometimes call people who support it “white racists.” He believes they could counter this by having an authentic African American group with well-known Black individuals on the board, providing more credibility to their views.

The head of the Urban League in Miami, T. Willard Fair, said that the idea for the group came from worries about how immigration would affect Black neighborhoods.

“In Dade County, having experienced the Haitians coming here, I knew how if it was not controlled how it could impact negatively the progress of my constituents, who happen to be Black Miamians,” Fair told Politico, noting that he has been talking about this issue for decades. “And then Chip came up with the idea that we ought to begin to react again based on what’s going on at the southern border, and how it was going to impact us going forward. So, he said, ‘let’s organize a group.’”

According to Politico, Chip’s group aligns with organizations such as Numbers USA, the Federation for American Immigration, and the Institute for Sound Public Policy (formerly known as Project for Immigration Reform).

These organizations share a common belief that immigration negatively impacts Black workers and advocate for immigration restrictions.
Even though the group is just starting, it plans to apply for 501(c)(3) status and launch a website. Initially, Chip’s group doesn’t plan to lobby. Still, it plans to bring attention to studies that suggest that less-educated immigrant workers compete for jobs with less-educated U.S.-born workers.

They plan to use that argument to push for more restrictive immigration policies, including reducing legal immigration.

Politico noted that the discussion about how immigration affects the job market is complicated. Most economists say immigrants help the labor market as a whole and have few harmful effects on native-born workers with less education.

But some people agree that some groups, like Black workers in certain parts of the business, may pay small costs.

Critics argue there is more than just a debate about the economy. They say that there is a cynical political strategy at play: trying to put immigrants and Black Americans against each other.

Many remain skeptical of Chip, particularly giving his ultra right-wing and racist views.

“While writing about immigration for the Center for Immigration studies for nearly two decades, Chip did not hide his views on race,” Politico noted. “During 2021, he posted a series of inflammatory posts on Twitter, now known as X, including one tweet that questioned whether Derek Chauvin, the Minneapolis officer who killed George Floyd, was racially motivated.” In another, he talks Native Americans’ concerns about European settlement in America.

“If there are some whites who are concerned about becoming the minority and having other racial groups become the dominant force in society, and so they’re basically at the mercy of the other groups — I mean, they’re not the only ones who felt that way. The Native Americans felt that way,” Chip said, when explaining the tweet.