Under the terms of the INA, legal immigration to the United States became relatively widely available and a substantial number of ˘new÷ Americans began to populate the country (Immigration and Nationality Act, 2003). Today, the Office of Citizenship, created by House Resolution 5005, the Homeland Security Act of 2002, has eliminated the INS and created a new mechanism for granting visas and citizenship and training/educating applicants for American citizenship (Welcome to the Ó 2003).
Under the Homeland Security Act, according to Malone (2002), three departments within this new cabinet-level bureaucracy have been created. One handles border protection, another enforces immigration laws in the nationĂs interior, and a third handles naturalization, residency permits, asylum claims. While a part of the agencyĂs mission is to cut waiting times for permits and citizenship applications, another mission objective is to reduce the number of immigrants entering the United States illegally a