Skip to comments.Why the Railroad Effort on the Amnesty Bill?
Posted on 06/16/2007 8:02:53 AM PDT by 3AngelaD
We can all understand the push by big business to keep their steady flow of illegal laborers coming in, strengthening their bargaining position against blue-collar working class Americans. Then again, they already have that today in droves. Why the sudden balls-to-the-wall push to get it all "kosher" right now? Mickey Kaus forwards a theory:
Chertoff and Kyl both seem to have answered that question recently, Kyl in his Wall Street Journal interview and Chertoff on Fox News yesterday: because businesses are starting to worry about efforts to enforce immigration laws at the local level. One state in the vanguard of that effort is Kyl's (and McCain's) home state of Arizona, where the legislature has passed numerous laws (usually vetoed) on the issue, and where the public voted for Prop 200 back in 2004.
To me that says something far more ominous than that Congress is being disingenuous or naïve on the matter. Far from simple being empty promises, this amnesty bill is actually a blatant attempt to head off any attempts at enforcement at all.
I think this is probably right. I think big business realizes that voters are going to extract some very explicit and unequivocal promises from their candidates next year. I think they realize at this point that a number of their champions on this bill are not coming back to Washington after the next election.
Big agriculture and big construction realize that they'll be faced with a new Commander-in-Chief, Democrat or Republican, who will likely have made a list of unequivocal promises to the voters during the campaign. Given the opportunity to build up public goodwill with a series of big, high-profile immigration busts in her first six months of office, does anyone think that President Hillary would pass it up? If she's anywhere near as calculating as her reputation suggests, there's not a chance she'll pass up that opportunity.
A Republican President would feel less need for high-profile token efforts, but may bring in a Justice Department that actually cares about national security. (How crazy would that be?) If you're an employer who's been skirting the law for years with a wink and a nod, this change in the winds has to be keeping you up at night--with good reason. Some CEOs looking at public opinion polls and knowing their employment rolls haven't been even close to right with God, have to be dealing with some serious heartburn at the thought of angry villagers at the corporate gates demanding massive fines and/or a few years in federal pound-me-in-the-ass prison.
If the employers can just get across the line on this, they've significantly reduced their exposure. This Amnesty Bill represents a sort of "get out of jail free" card for these executives. Whether it'll actually work out that way is another matter. They see the writing on the wall, and they're pulling out the stops to protect their own hides, even if they have to wreck their own country to do it. Of course, jamming this piece of sh*** down our throats only adds to the long list of reasons we're already pissed as hell at the employers and their elected cronies.
This may be your time, fellas. You may have the upper hand now. The men in power are your boys, and you may get them to vote how you like, even against the clear will of the people who sent them there. Enjoy it while it lasts, but don't forget it for a second: our time is coming. You have the cash, but we have the numbers. A whole lot of us have damn long memories. We're gonna remember every bit of this sordid ordeal. And payback, as they say, is a bitch.
The failure to provide adequate border security really does call into question the premise of the war in Iraq, at least in my mind.
Except that no "bill" can do any such thing. The status quo that's passed today can be quietly amended and reversed as an amendment to some other bill next session.
The author proposes that the biz-owners are rammin this through precisely because the status quo is about to change and, according to the author, they want this passed to protect them from the next Prez and Congress which will sweep away all the pro-amnesty congresscritters.
Thus if the author is correct, and their pro-amnesty protectors are swept out of congress, then the big-biz pro-illegals will be even MORE vulnerable in the next congress because their protectors will be gone, and Hillary is going to find a way to crush their balls no matter what legislation is passed this session.
The supporters of amnesty can be wrong, and also believe that it's the right thing to do at the same time.
The pro-amnesty people may just simply believe that what they are doing is the best compromise they can get before Hillary gets in and they have no say, and that doing nothing is worse.
The author's explanation here for their motivation falls short.
I had to repost it, even though you just said it. It was too good. You are dead on the money.
Whatever it takes people...we've got to stop it.
>>The link between massive illegal immigration and terror by Arabs is weak.<<
We don’t know how many terrorists may be sneaking in among the “gardeners and nannies.” Many of the most potentially most lethal terrorists don’t act until the time is right.
The lack of respect for the law is a big problem, and in my view is a significant security risk.
That alone should scare the bejeezus out of most Americans....this thing has been given status ahead of terrorism (it probably encourages it), ahead of the public will and social order, ahead of (either party's) unity, and ahead of the 'legacy' that other presidents have worried so much about.
Tony Snow has gone from conservative icon to banal mouthpiece in one smooth slide - and he seems content with that. Kennedy and McCain, satire for most of their time in office, have risen to lead the charge - while a president who owes neither any allegiance beats the drum for them. Those in support of this beast seem to have no second thoughts about smearing any and all discontent within their own parties and their own constituencies.
I'm scared just at the thought that it has so much intent and force behind it - and I'm really scared at the thought that politicians, theoretically depending on popular votes for their status, are driven to jam it up our collective throat.
The lack of respect for law is right there in ‘amnesty.’ That might mean we can pick and choose which if any laws we want to ignore, as we already do and we could make quite a list no problem. That is the danger. The security thing is a distraction: if laws mean nothing what is left?
The words of St. Thomas More have been coming to my mind more and more lately:
"And when the last law was down, and the Devil turned 'round on you, where would you hide, Roper, the laws all being flat? This country is planted thick with laws, from coast to coast, Man's laws, not God's! And if you cut them down, and you're just the man to do it, do you really think you could stand upright in the winds that would blow then? Yes, I'd give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety's sake!"
Am I being naive, or should there not be some type of publication of the who’s who of the corporations attempting to get this railroaded through? Companies that are worried about losing customers over losing cheap labor might reconsider this push if they thought it might actually not benefit them in the long run. Or hopefully might damage them in the short and long term. This is getting frighteningly close.
Good one! More joked around a lot, but he was right.
>>The security thing is a distraction: if laws mean nothing what is left?<<
“The security thing” as seen by pro-amnesty people is that if most of them are legalized, the feds will know where they are. I don’t agree that this will be an overall plus to security.
As I see it, “the security thing” is that amnesty
1) Will legalize some terrorists who are currently illegal, and
2) encourages further massive illegal immigration, which is an ideal way to conceal terrorists entering the US.
I agree that “If laws mean nothing, nothing is left.”
Over the past winter the Troopers came down this little road half a dozen times and eventually arrested 3-4, all terrorists but none either Mexican or Arab. We have enough homegrown already due to general disregard of laws and the values the country started with that some foreign terrorists wouldn’t amount relatively to spit in a bucket of swampwater. Just my opinion.
Many politicians have come and gone but the majority have remained the same for years — like Kennedy, McCain, Lott, etc., etc. Illegal immigration has been going on for decades without any serious attempt by the federal government to stem the tide. So — the logical inference is that they, for some reason, desire illegal immigration. We know that senators have a way of leaving office very wealthy. How? Why? Because they suck up to big business. Big business, by the way, is the real beneficiary of illegal immigration. They pay wages that Americans don’t want to work for. It is much more profitable to have a permanent slave class. So we understand the reason for turning a blind eye for so long at illegals streaming across the border. Now those same politicians who allowed illegal immigration in the first place are telling us that we can’t deport the 20 million law-breakers who are here. Why? It’s not because it is physically impossible or heartless. It’s the money!
20 Loopholes in the Senate Immigration Bill
Loophole 1 Legal Status Before Enforcement:
Amnesty benefits do not wait for the enforcement trigger. After filing an application and waiting 24 hours, illegal aliens will receive full probationary benefits, complete with the ability to legally live and work in the U.S., travel outside of the U.S. and return, and their own social security card. Astonishingly, if the trigger is never met and amnesty applications are therefore never approved, the probationary benefits granted to the illegal alien population never expire, and the new social security cards issued to the illegal alien population are not revoked. [See pp. 1, 290-291, & 315].
Loophole 2 U.S. VISIT Exit Not In Trigger:
The enforcement trigger, required to be met before the new temporary worker program begins, does not require that the exit portion of U.S. VISIT system the biometric border check-in/check-out system first required by Congress in 1996 that is already well past its already postponed 2005 implementation due date to be in place before new worker or amnesty programs begin. Without the U.S. VISIT exit portion, the U.S. has no method to ensure that workers (or their visiting families) do not overstay their visas. Our current illegal population contains 4 to 5.5 million visa overstays, therefore, we know that the U.S. VISIT exit component is key to a successful new temporary worker program. [See pp. 1-2].
Loophole 3 Trigger Requires No More Agents, Beds, or Fencing Than Current Law:
The enforcement trigger does not require the Department of Homeland Security to have detention space sufficient to end catch and release at the border and in the interior. Even after the adoption of amendment 1172, the trigger merely requires the addition of 4,000 detention beds, bringing DHS to a 31,500 bed capacity. This is far short of the 43,000 beds required under current law to be in place by the end of 2007, or the additional 20,000 beds required later in the bill. Additionally, the bill establishes a catch, pay, and release program. This policy will benefit illegal aliens from countries other than Mexico that are caught at the border, then can post a $5,000 bond, be released and never show up for deportation hearings. Annual failure to appear rates for 2005 and 2006, caused in part by lack of detention space, doubled the 2004 rate (106,000 110,000 compared with 54,000). Claims that the bill expands fencing are inaccurate. The bill only requires 370 miles of fencing to be completed, while current law already mandates that more than 700 miles be constructed [See pp. 1-2, & 10-11, and EOIRs FY2006 Statistical Yearbook, p. H2, and The Secure Fence Act of 2004].
Loophole 4 Three Additional Years Worth of Illegal Aliens Granted Status, Treated Preferentially To Legal Filers:
Aliens who broke into the country illegally a mere 5 months ago, are treated better than foreign nationals who legally applied to come to the U.S. more than two years ago. Aliens who can prove they were illegally in the U.S. on January 1, 2007, are immediately eligible to apply from inside the U.S. for amnesty benefits, while foreign nationals that filed applications to come to the U.S. after May 1, 2005 must start the application process over again from their home countries. Last years bill required illegal aliens to have been here before January 7, 2004 to qualify for permanent legal status. [See pp. 263, 282, & 306].
Loophole 5 Completion of Background Checks Not Required For Probationary Legal Status:
Legal status must be granted to illegal aliens 24 hours after they file an application, even if the aliens have not yet passed all appropriate background checks. (Last years bill gave DHS 90 days to check an aliens background before any status was granted). No legal status should be given to any illegal alien until all appropriate background checks are complete. [See pp. 290].
Loophole 6 Some Child Molesters Are Still Eligible:
Some aggravated felons those who have sexually abused a minor are eligible for amnesty. A child molester who committed the crime before the bill is enacted is not barred from getting amnesty if their conviction document omitted the age of the victim. The bill corrects this loophole for future child molesters, but does not close the loophole for current or past convictions. [See p. 47: 30-33, & p. 48: 1-2]
Loophole 7 Terrorism Connections Allowed, Good Moral Character Not Required:
Illegal aliens with terrorism connections are not barred from getting amnesty. An illegal alien seeking most immigration benefits must show good moral character. Last years bill specifically barred aliens with terrorism connections from having good moral character and being eligible for amnesty. This years bill does neither. Additionally, bill drafters ignored the Administrations request that changes be made to the asylum, cancellation of removal, and withholding of removal statutes in order to prevent aliens with terrorist connections from receiving relief. [Compare §204 in S. 2611 from the 109th Congress with missing §204 on p. 48 of S.A. 1150, & see missing subsection (5) on p. 287 of S.A. 1150].
Loophole 8 Gang Members Are Eligible:
Instead of ensuring that members of violent gangs such as MS 13 are deported after coming out of the shadows to apply for amnesty, the bill will allow violent gang members to get amnesty as long as they renounce their gang membership on their application. [See p. 289: 34-36].
Loophole 9 Absconders Are Eligible:
Aliens who have already had their day in court those subject to final orders of removal, voluntary departure orders, or reinstatement of their final orders of removal are eligible for amnesty under the bill. The same is true for aliens who have made a false claim to citizenship or engaged in document fraud. More than 636,000 alien fugitives could be covered by this loophole. [See p. 285:19-22 which waives the following inadmissibility grounds: failure to attend a removal proceeding; final orders of removal for alien smuggling; aliens unlawfully present after previous immigration violations or deportation orders; and aliens previously removed. This appears to conflict with language on p. 283:40-41. When a direct conflict appears in a statute, the statue is interpreted by the courts to the benefit of the alien.].
Loophole 10 Learning English Not Required For A Decade:
Illegal aliens are not required to demonstrate any proficiency in English for more than a decade after they are granted amnesty. Learning English is not required for an illegal alien to receive probationary benefits, the first 4-year Z visa, or the second 4-year Z visa. The first Z visa renewal (the second 4-year Z visa) requires only that the alien demonstrate an attempt to learn English by being on a waiting list for English classes. Passing a basic English test is required only for a second Z visa renewal (the third 4-year Z visa), and even then the alien only has to pass the test prior to the expiration of the second extension of Z status (12 years down the road). [See pp. 295-296].
Loophole 11 Earned Income Tax Credit Will Cost Taxpayers Billions In Just 10 Years:
Current illegal aliens and new guest workers will be eligible for the Earned Income Tax Credit, a refundable tax credit designed to encourage American citizens and legal permanent residents to work. The Congressional Budget Office estimates that this loophole will cost the U.S. taxpayer up to $20 billion dollars in just the first 10 years after the bills enactment. To be consistent with the intent of the 1996 welfare reforms which limited new immigrants from receiving public benefits until they had been legal permanent residents for five years the bill should withhold EITC eligibility from amnestied aliens until they become legal permanent residents. Closing this loophole will save the taxpayers billions of dollars. [See p. 293 after S.A. 1190 was adopted, p. 307, p. 315, §606. All that is required for EITC eligibility is a social security number and resident alien status. Nothing in the bills tax provisions limit EITC eligibility. The issuance of social security numbers to aliens as soon as they apply for amnesty will ensure they are able to qualify for the EITC.]
Loophole 12 Affidavits From Friends Accepted As Evidence:
Records from day-labor centers, labor unions, and sworn declarations from any non-relative (acquaintances, friends, coworkers, etc) are to be accepted as evidence that the illegal alien has satisfied the bills amnesty requirements. This low burden of proof will invite fraud and more illegal immigration even aliens who are not yet in the U.S. will likely meet this burden of proof. DHS will not have the resources to examine whether the claims contained in the sworn declarations of the aliens friends (that the alien was here prior to January 1, 2007 and is currently employed) are actually valid. [See p. 293: 13-16].
Loophole 13 Taxpayer Funded Legal Counsel and Arbitration:
Free legal counsel and the fees and expenses of arbitrators will be provided to aliens that have been working illegally in agriculture. The U.S. taxpayer will fund the attorneys that help these individuals fill out their amnesty applications. Additionally, if these individuals have a dispute with their employer over whether they were fired for just cause, DHS will pay the fee and expenses of the arbitrator. [See p. 339:37-41, & p. 332: 37-38.]
Loophole 14 In-State Tuition and Student Loans:
In-state tuition and other higher education benefits, such as Stafford Loans, will be made available to current illegal aliens that are granted initial probationary status, even if the same in-state tuition rates are not offered to all U.S. citizens. This would normally violate current law (8 U.S.C. §1623) which mandates that educational institutions give citizens the same postsecondary education benefits they offer to illegal aliens. [See p. 321: 8-31].
Loophole 15 Inadequacy of the Merit System:
The merit system, designed to shift the U.S. green card distribution system to attract higher skilled workers that benefit the national interest, is only a shell of what it should have been. Though the merit system begins immediately, it will not increase the percentage of high skilled immigrants coming to the United States until 2016, 8 years after enactment. Of the 247,000 green cards dedicated to the merit based system each year for the first 5 years, 100,000 green cards will be reserved for low-skilled guest workers (10,000) and for clearing the current employment based green card backlog (90,000). From 2013 to 2015, the number of merit based green cards drops to 140,000, and of that number, 100,000 green cards are still reserved each year for low-skilled guest workers (10,000) and for clearing the current employment based green card backlog (90,000). Even after 2015, when the merit system really begins (in 2016) by having 380,000 green cards annually, 10,00 green cards will be reserved specifically for low skilled workers, and points will be given for many characteristics that are not considered high-skilled. For example, 16 points will be given for aliens in high demand occupations which includes janitors, maids, food preparation workers, and groundskeepers. [See p.260: 25 p. 261: 20, p. 262, & The Department of Labors list of occupations with the largest job growth available at www.bls.gov/emp/emptab3.htm].
Loophole 16 Visas For Individuals That Plan To Overstay:
The new parent visa contained in the bill which allows parents of citizens, and the spouses and children of new temporary workers, to visit a worker in the United States is not only a misnomer, but also an invitation for high rates of visa overstays. This new visa specifically allows the spouse and children of new temporary workers who intend to abandon their residence in a foreign country, to qualify to come to the U.S. to visit. The visa requires only a $1,000 bond, which will be forfeited when, not if, family members of new temporary workers decide to overstay their 30 day visit. Workers should travel to their home countries to visit their families, not the other way around. [See p. 277:1 33, and p. 276: 38-43].
Loophole 17 Chain Migration Tippled Before Being Eliminated:
Though the bill will eventually eliminate chain migration (relatives other than spouses and children of citizens and legal permanent residents), it will not have full effect until 2016. Until then, chain migration into the U.S. will actually triple, from approximately 138,000 chain migrants a year (equal to 14% of the 1 million green cards the U.S. currently distributes on an annual basis) to approximately 440,000 chain migrants a year (equal to 45% of the 1 million green cards the U.S. currently distributes on an annual basis). [See pp. 260:13, p. 270: 29 pp. 271: 17]
Loophole 18 Back Taxes Not Required:
Last years bill required illegal aliens to prove they had paid three of their last five years of taxes to get amnesty. This year, payment of back taxes is not required for amnesty. The bill requires taxes to be paid at the time of application for a green card, but at that time, only proof of payment of Federal taxes (not state and local) is required for the years the alien worked on a Z visa, not the years the alien has already worked illegally in the United States. Though Senator McCains S.A. 1190, adopted by voice vote, claimed to require undocumented immigrants receiving legal status to pay owed back taxes, the amendment actually only required proof of payment of taxes for any year during the period of employment required by subparagraph (D)(i). Since the bill does not contain a subparagraph (D)(i), nor require any past years of employment as a prerequisite for amnesty, the amendment essentially only requires proof of payment of taxes for future work in the U.S., not payment of back taxes. [See p. 307, and p. 293 as altered by S.A. 1190, amendment p. 2: 19-20.]
Loophole 19 Social Security Credits Allowed For Some Illegal Work Histories:
Aliens who came to the U.S. on legal visas, but overstayed their visas and have been working in the U.S. for years, as well as illegal aliens who apply for Z visa status but do not qualify, will be able to collect social security credits for the years they worked illegally. Under the bill, if an alien was ever issued a social security account number all work-authorized aliens who originally came on legal visas receive these the alien will receive Social Security credits for any quarters of coverage the alien worked after receiving their social security account number. Because the bill requires social security account numbers to be issued promptly to illegal aliens as soon as they are granted any probationary benefits based upon application [for Z status] (these benefits are granted 24 hours after the application is filed), an illegal alien who is denied Z visa status but continues to work illegally in the U.S. will accumulate Social Security credits. [See pp. 316:8 16, and pp. 315: 32-39]
Loophole 20 Criminal Fines Not Proportional To Conduct:
The criminal fines an illegal alien is required to pay to receive amnesty are less than the bills criminal fines for paperwork violations committed by U.S. citizens, and can be paid by installment. Under the bill, an illegal alien must pay a $1,000 criminal fine to apply for a Z visa, and a $4,000 fine to apply for a green card. Eighty percent of those fines can be paid on an installment plan. Under the bills confidentiality provisions, someone who improperly handles or uses information on an aliens amnesty application can be fined $10,000. Administration officials suggest that the bills criminal fines are proportionate to the criminal conduct. Why, then, is the fine for illegally entering, using false documents to work, and live one-tenth the fine for a paperwork violation committed by a government official? [See p. 287: 34, p. 317: 9, p. 315:6-8, & remarks made by Secretary Gutierrez on Your World with Neil Cavuto, 4:00 May 31, 2007]
GWB and DHS got $1.2 billion for a border fence,
GWB authorized 6,000 National Guardsmen to the border in rolling deployments of 3 weeks
In his 2006 budget, GWBs budget showed that 216 BP officers would be hired, not the 2,000
U.S. Border Patrol Director David Aguilar said two weeks ago, The United States will have operational control of its border with Mexico by 2013.
Here’s what I don’t understand: if all these cheap laborers are legalized, don’t they become subject to minimum wage laws? How does this help businesses? Of are businesses going to fire all the now-legal folks and hire the next wave of cheap illegals instead? If the latter, what are the now-legal folks going to do?
Actually, I can't understand it. What was wrong for "big business" with the status quo. (assuming arguendo that "big business" is hiring these folks) If illegals are paid less than legals for similar work, and the bill eliminates the illegality, it would seem to me that the number of underpaid workers will decline drastically.
“The Washington DC establishment wants this all done and behind us before the ‘08 election really revs up.”
Yes. Wait until they try to push this on the public. Not only will there be a whole lot of naysayers who will be dumbfounded but, the outcry will make the illegal immigration debate look like a birthday party.
I have edited it to fit in the Senator's website communication area, and told each of them that NO AMERICAN SENATOR with a conscience or love for this country can vote to bring this horrendous bill to become law.
We all need to flood their e-mail boxes and their phones, screaming protests that we won't have this shoved down our throats by elitists. These people are crazy!!
So, if our educational system, and I am a former teacher who fought all the nonsense that has gone on exponentially for 40 years or more, has so dumbed down the American worker they only know expectation rather than hard, honest work, we are all losers. Businesses hire who they can trust. It turns out they have less trust in the American worker than they do the foreign worker, in my estimation; so they justify their anti-American hiring because it benefits their business at a higher level.
“They do hire illegals, they earn a good salary. live in modern double wides with nice interiors, drive newer cars, and have their children well dressed and polite.”
Ask them if they pay taxes, buy their own insurance and have valid ID?