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Immigration reform: Promises and band aids (updated)
Posted by: McQ on Thursday, May 17, 2007

OK, just got home from a horrendous day on the road (of which I'll post about later) and have been listening all day to discussion about the supposed bi-partisan deal on "comprehensive immigration reform".

First let me say that any bill Ted Kennedy feels is a good bill makes me reflexively reach for my wallet and look over my shoulder. I can't help it. Every single solitary bill Ted Kennedy has favored has, in the end, cost me a lot of money.

I'll also remind you that we were promised all of this previously in the '80s the last time we had "comprehensive immigration reform". Since then we've managed to ignore the part about enforcing those laws and ended up with 12 million more illegal immigrants. We're now being led down the same primrose path with the same sorts of promises.

Probably most indicative of my skepticism concerning the seriousness of the government (and I include both sides of the isle in this) is the fact that fact that no real attempt has ever been made to enforce immigration law or border security. None. It has been a litany of excuses punctuated with with bouts of big talk and no action.

Oh we have had a few raids here and there, but my guess is they've netted some few thousand illegals, deported them, and most are back in the country. It's all for show.

As for border security, the government has dragged its feet on hiring new border patrol agents (something this bill also says they'll do) and of the 700+ miles of fence which was authorized last year, an amazing 2 miles have been built.

My point (and I'll have much more to say on this as I read up more) is just like AGW, I think a huge dose of skepticism is in order concerning this bill. And, more than anything, I think it is an awful idea to pass a bill with 600 to 1,000 pages without debate or without it being available to the public prior to being voted on. If it was so all fired important to have a debate about Iraq, then it is equally as important to debate this monster before it is signed into law and we're stuck with a legal monstrosity which redefines the law of unintended consequences.

More later.

UPDATE: Sen. DeMint had already said most of what I wrote:
“I hope we don't take a thousand page bill written in secret and try to ram it through the Senate in a few days. This is a very important issue for America and we need time to debate it.”

“But the little we do know about the bill is troubling. According to reports, the bill contains a new 'Z-visa' that allows those who entered our country illegally to stay here permanently without ever returning home. This rewards people who broke the law with permanent legal status, and puts them ahead of millions of law-abiding immigrants waiting to come to America. I don't care how you try to spin it, this is amnesty.”
I don't know enough about it to know whether I agree with him on the amnesty claim or not. But I do know enough to completely agree with him on the part about the debate and the need to give the details of this plan a complete and full airing prior to any vote.

The one hope in seeing this done, folks, is the Senate, because President Bush is ready to sign this puppy (which is another reason to want the debate first).

UPDATE II: Bruce Kesler agrees. Or, better said, Bruce and I agree. He also has a link to the text of the bill.
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Previous Comments to this Post 

I see no political solution to this. Neither party wants to piss off the fastest growing minority group in this country. It’s all about votes. The only thing I see turning this around is either a severe job shortage (as in a 30’s era depression) or several 9/11 incidents where it is determined that the terrorists crossed the border illegally.
Written By: Bob
URL: http://
11 million illegal immigrants in the U.S. are not going to be deported. That kind of action would be unprecedented in a western democratic state. Mass deportations are practiced, in practice, by dictatorships.

To the anti-amnesty crowd, anything less than mass deportation is amnesty. So call it amnesty and write as many angry letters as you like, but the vast majority of Americans doesn’t want it any other way. Bring on the amnesty. It’s a nice touch to see one small dose of mercy in a generally indifferent and ruthless government, regardless of whatever political cynicism fuels it.

Written By: glasnost
URL: http://
11 million illegal immigrants in the U.S. are not going to be deported.
Who said they were?
Written By: McQ
11 million illegal immigrants in the U.S. are not going to be deported.
Why the hell not? That is what our laws say that we should do.
Written By: Mark A. Flacy
URL: http://
Bob says: Neither party wants to piss off the fastest growing minority group in this country.

What Bob’s suggesting, when you look forward a few years, is allowing one racial/ethnic group to dictate our immigration policy.

glasnost, like others much more famous than he, plays the FalseChoice card, pretending that we have to choose between MassDeportations and the MassiveAmnesty. The choice he doesn’t mention is enforcing our laws now, thereby encouraging many to leave on their own.

As for whether it’s amnesty, the key thing to focus on is not how it’s presented, by how it will be perceived. Obviously, millions outside the U.S. will see this as amnesty, with predictable results.

Figure out my URL from my name; I seem to be banned or something.
Written By: Lonew_ackoDotCom
Mass deportations are practiced, in practice, by dictatorships.
Okay, so, we know what you think of the whole thing.

While you’re at it, why don’t you suggest that maybe we’ll load them on windowless boxcars with no air conditioning and terminus points at places with vaguely German or Eastern European names where we’ll let them earn their freedoms through work, so you can get the full emotional impact from your statement.

There are probably other laws you’d like to see flouted, perhaps you can suggest which ones they are, and how we ought to reward the offenders.
Might I suggest, at least 11 million of us not pay our income taxes next year to see if we get amnesty for breaking the law.
Written By: looker
URL: http://

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