The Scholar: St. Mary's Law Review on Race and Social Justice


The Controlled Application Review and Resolution Program (CARRP) unduly burdens applicants of the United States naturalization process and creates the nearly impossible task of erasing any national security concern. Minorities, especially minorities of the Muslim faith, are subjected to unfair investigation and adjudication of their naturalization applications. Congress allegedly eradicated discrimination from the naturalization process with the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1952 (INA). The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), the agency in charge of overseeing lawful immigration to the United States, implemented CARRP in 2008 to establish a policy for handling naturalization cases which might be perceived as a security threat. CARRP, however, has crippled the naturalization process. CARRP is a four-stage program. Stage one involves identifying and confirming a “national security concern.” Once this has been established, stage two involves internal vetting to determine if the identified national security concern can be resolved. Stage three is external vetting which relies on outside agencies to provide additional information. Finally, stage four is adjudication. Under federal law, the USCIS, when dealing with naturalization applications, has up to 120 days to make a decision. This unreasonable delay violates statutory guidelines and fails to protect national security interests. CARRP overreaches the authority of Congress and creates an extra statutory section on naturalization eligibility.  If security is really threatened, the government should act swiftly and not merely bury these national security concerns in red tape. Nevertheless, fair adjudication should be the norm for all applicants, including minorities of the Muslim faith.

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