San Diego Law Review

Library of Congress Authority File


Document Type



This Article analyzes the legal responses of the United States to issues of refugee and asylum policy in the post-World War II period that culminates in the enactment of the 1980 Refugee Act. The article describes the consensus for a humanitarian, nondiscriminatory policy that led to the passage of the Refugee Act. This legislative history demonstrates the effort to develop a coherent and flexible refugee admission policy and to create statutory mechanisms to mediate the conflict between the executive and legislative branches over the control and standards for refugee admissions. The article evaluates the implementation of the Refugee Act, proposals by recent administrators for reform, and offers a series of recommendations for future refugee and asylum policy.