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Anna On Ya Law

Herbert Kurz Chair of Constitutional Rights and Associate Professor of Political Science, CUNY Brooklyn College
Chapter Member: New York City SSN
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About Anna

Law specializes in public law (including U.S. constitutional law, federal courts, legal institutions such as the American jury system) and U.S. immigration policy history. two notable projects include an exploration of immigration federalism and slavery, and gender-based asylum cases.

No Jargon Podcast

In the News

Interviewed in "Reaction to US Supreme Court abortion document leak," SABC News, May 5, 2022.
Opinion: "The Myth of ‘Open Borders’," Anna On Ya Law, The Washington Post, September 21, 2021.
Research discussed by Joe Mauceri, in "Fight to Free Pizza Deliveryman Arrested by ICE Continues," PIX11, June 19, 2018.
Interviewed in "Trump Looks to Terminate the Diversity Lottery Program," National Public Radio, January 15, 2018.
Quoted by Miriam Valverde in "Is the Diversity Visa Program a Tool for Terrorists?," PolitiFact, November 2, 2017.
Opinion: "The Irish Roots of the Diversity Visa Lottery," Anna On Ya Law, Politico Magazine, November 1, 2017.
Quoted by Jen Kirby in "Trump Blasts “Diversity Visa Lottery Program” after NYC Terror Attack," Vox, November 1, 2017.
Quoted by in "Trump Demands End to Visa Lottery after Attack," Financial times, November 1, 2017.
Quoted by Priscilla Alvarez in "The Diversity Visa Program was Created to Help Irish Immigrants," The Atlantic, November 1, 2017.
Quoted by Adolfo Flores in "Killing the Diversity Visa Program would Hurt Primarily Africans and Asians," BuzzFeed News, November 1, 2017.
Opinion: "Can Trump Pardon Himself and His Children?," Anna On Ya Law, Bill Moyers, September 12, 2017.
Opinion: "This is How Trump’s Deportations Differ from Obama’s," Anna On Ya Law, The Washington Post, May 3, 2017.
Quoted by Michael E. Miller in "‘Straight Up Pork Barrel Politics’: How the Green Card Lottery was Invented to Help the Irish," The Washington Post, May 2, 2017.
Quoted by Gail Ablow in "Separation of Powers, Explained," Bill Moyers, February 10, 2017.
Opinion: "Want to Challenge Trump on Immigration? Try a Strategy from the Antebellum South," Anna On Ya Law, The Conversation, January 5, 2017.
Guest on CUNY TV, November 30, 2016.
Quoted by Keegan Hamilton in "Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop," Vice, November 14, 2016.
Opinion: "Cooler Heads," Anna On Ya Law, Miller Center, Spring 2016.
Opinion: "The Crucial Question Reagan and LBJ Got Right - and Trump Gets Wrong," Anna On Ya Law, Talking Points Memo, October 5, 2015.
Opinion: "Lies, Damned Lies, and Obama’s Deportation Statistics," Anna On Ya Law, The Washington Post, April 21, 2014.
Quoted by Charisma Miller in "Immigration Reform Sparks Brooklyn Reaction," Brooklyn Daily Eagle, January 30, 2013.
Quoted by Taimur Khan in "Obama Tries to Reform U.S. Immigration," The National, January 30, 2013.
Quoted by María Inés Zamudio in "Broken Promises," Chicago Reporter, November 1, 2011.
Quoted by María Inés Zamudio in "The Allure of Secure," Chicago Reporter, November 1, 2011.
Quoted by in "'Drop and Leave?' Not So Fast.," NBC News, August 20, 2010.
Opinion: "PBS: The Supreme Court," Anna On Ya Law, Narrator in episodes 1, 2, and 3, 2007.


"The Historical Amnesia of American Immigration Federalism" Polity 47, no. 3 (2015): 302-319.
Walks through the 1787 Constitution to find that the framers did not grant clear authorization for a national immigration power except for the naturalization clause, which pertains only to one narrow part of immigration policy.
"Lunatics, Idiots, Paupers, and Negro Seamen: Immigration Federalism and the Early American State" Studies in American Political Development 28, no. 2 (2014): 107-128.
Explains why the states, not the national government, were fully in charge of immigration policy until 1882.
"Understanding Judicial Decision Making in Immigration at the U.S. Courts of Appeals" (with Margaret Williams). The Justice System Journal 33, no. 1 (2012): 97-119.
Analyzes an array of factors that explain legal outcomes in immigration cases.
"How the Internal Adjudicative Procedures of the Ninth Circuit Can Disadvantage Pro Se and Political Asylum Claimants" Georgetown Immigration Law Journal 25 (2011): 647-679.
Examines how the internal operational rules of a federal court can affect legal outcomes for non-counseled political asylum applicants.
"The Immigration Battle in American Courts" (Cambridge University Press, 2010).
Examines the role of the Supreme Court and U.S. Courts of Appeals in immigration policy making in the United States, while also advancing scholarly understanding about the distinct and evolving missions and functions of the two highest federal appellate courts, the U.S. Courts of Appeals, and the Supreme Court.
"The Diversity Immigration Lottery: A Cycle of Unintended Consequences" Journal of American Ethnic History 21, no. 4 (2002): 3-29.

Traces the legislative history of the visa lottery to show that the provision has not much to do with diversity and is in fact a product of pork barrel politics.