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    WASHINGTON POST (Editorial)
    Friday, March 24, 2006
    "BREAKTHROUGH" is a word that should always be used with extreme care, at least when discussing immigration reform. Nevertheless, it may be warranted: The Senate Judiciary Committee, which had been bogged down for several weeks trying to produce an immigration bill, appears to have reached a consensus. The deal doesn't solve all of the problems, but it does at least try to solve the most difficult: the fate of the estimated 12 million people who live in this country illegally.
    In its essence, the compromise -- patterned on a proposal by Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Edward M. Kennedy (D-Mass.) -- allows undocumented workers living here to apply for residency permits, on the condition that they prove they are employed and pay a hefty fine for breaking the law. They would then go to the back of the green card line -- behind those applying legally -- and wait for citizenship. President Bush has always said he would endorse such a solution as long as it doesn't look like an "amnesty" that rewards lawbreakers. During a news conference this week, he seemed to say that the Senate solution might be precisely that: "People who have been here need to get in line, like everybody else," he confirmed.
    This is, of course, a very fragile sort of agreement. It hasn't been voted on, or even properly written down. It doesn't get to the issue of what to do about temporary workers who want to come here in the future, and it doesn't solve the border control issues either. Amazingly, some in the Senate and the House are still pushing to build a wall along the 2,000-mile U.S.-Mexico border, a project that -- aside from its unpleasant symbolism -- would cost billions of dollars (a 14-mile wall near San Diego cost $70 million alone), would deal with only part of the problem (40 percent of the undocumented are thought to have arrived in other ways), and would not prevent people from using tunnels and ladders to get across, as they do now.
    Even more worrying are the complicated politics of making any immigration deal stick. Already, the immigration debate has become a forum for 2008 campaign jockeying, as possible presidential contender Sen. Bill Frist (R-Tenn.) tries to distance himself from possible presidential contender Mr. McCain, largely by sounding a much harder line on enforcement. Since the House doesn't seem to be in a mood to talk about anything but enforcement either, that bodes ill for anyone who wants a realistic solution to the problem of the undocumented. Still, a breakthrough is a breakthrough, however fragile, and the senators on the Judiciary Committee, led by Arlen Specter (R-Pa.), are to be commended for reaching it.

  • #2
    WASHINGTON POST (Editorial)
    Friday, March 24, 2006
    "BREAKTHROUGH" is a word that should always be used with extreme care, at least when discussing immigration reform. Nevertheless, it may be warranted: The Senate Judiciary Committee, which had been bogged down for several weeks trying to produce an immigration bill, appears to have reached a consensus. The deal doesn't solve all of the problems, but it does at least try to solve the most difficult: the fate of the estimated 12 million people who live in this country illegally.
    In its essence, the compromise -- patterned on a proposal by Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Edward M. Kennedy (D-Mass.) -- allows undocumented workers living here to apply for residency permits, on the condition that they prove they are employed and pay a hefty fine for breaking the law. They would then go to the back of the green card line -- behind those applying legally -- and wait for citizenship. President Bush has always said he would endorse such a solution as long as it doesn't look like an "amnesty" that rewards lawbreakers. During a news conference this week, he seemed to say that the Senate solution might be precisely that: "People who have been here need to get in line, like everybody else," he confirmed.
    This is, of course, a very fragile sort of agreement. It hasn't been voted on, or even properly written down. It doesn't get to the issue of what to do about temporary workers who want to come here in the future, and it doesn't solve the border control issues either. Amazingly, some in the Senate and the House are still pushing to build a wall along the 2,000-mile U.S.-Mexico border, a project that -- aside from its unpleasant symbolism -- would cost billions of dollars (a 14-mile wall near San Diego cost $70 million alone), would deal with only part of the problem (40 percent of the undocumented are thought to have arrived in other ways), and would not prevent people from using tunnels and ladders to get across, as they do now.
    Even more worrying are the complicated politics of making any immigration deal stick. Already, the immigration debate has become a forum for 2008 campaign jockeying, as possible presidential contender Sen. Bill Frist (R-Tenn.) tries to distance himself from possible presidential contender Mr. McCain, largely by sounding a much harder line on enforcement. Since the House doesn't seem to be in a mood to talk about anything but enforcement either, that bodes ill for anyone who wants a realistic solution to the problem of the undocumented. Still, a breakthrough is a breakthrough, however fragile, and the senators on the Judiciary Committee, led by Arlen Specter (R-Pa.), are to be commended for reaching it.

    Comment


    • #3
      There has to be an option for those already here because most illeglas are not going to come forward if they have the slightest fear of deportation.

      Comment


      • #4
        I hope this keeps moving in this direction.

        Comment


        • #5
          I doubt anything will be done, you just watch.

          They will argue up to the end and finally nothing will be done.

          It all about the elections later this year.Its called posturing.

          Comment


          • #6
            You're probably right Marasmus, getting a politician to make a choice is next to impossible.

            Comment


            • #7
              Actually there is a high probability that "Enforcement Only" Bill would pass this year. If not, then next year.

              Guest Worker program won't pass for reasons that are too obvious to state once again.

              Comment


              • #8
                guest worker will pass because god is behind it..do you believe in miracle?

                Comment


                • #9
                  I beleive that there is larger picture and long term consequences that matter more than narrow vision and short term goals.

                  1. I beleive that "Enforcement Only" legislation will pass, either this year or next year.

                  2. I beleive that new legislation will not take into account individual circumstances, but will "scapegoat" and turn into aggravated felons just about anyone, including the Church members who don't turn away from their doors the starving and thirsty.

                  3. I beleive that the measure is not balanced, is not wise but rather too extreme and purely passion driven.

                  It is also well known that the resources do not exist to enforce this new measure on massive scale (so it will turn out to be ineffective in practice).

                  4. I beleive that in the long run the measure itself will backfire and turn the tide in favor of immigrants.

                  5. I beleive that the end result of it will be complete failure of extreme measures and unconditional amnesty for all the millions of undocumented immigrants who will still be here years from now.

                  P.S. I don't think # 5 (unconditional amnesty to all) is what should happen ,nor do I think # 1 is best approach, but this is where it will all end up.

                  Regards,
                  IE

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    so let me ask you somehing..if a law passes that requires all undocumented migrants to leave within, lets say 2 years, but they still decide to stay..wouldnt that be a bar to even apply for any future ajustment of status later on, under INA?.

                    Its like, when you are ordered to leave the country, but choose not to, then later married USC, you will still not be able to adjust status because INA

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      "so let me ask you somehing..if a law passes that requires all undocumented migrants to leave within, lets say 2 years, but they still decide to stay..wouldnt that be a bar to even apply for any future ajustment of status later on, under INA?".


                      The answer to this specific question depends on how exactly the law is written.

                      "Its like, when you are ordered to leave the country, but choose not to, then later married USC, you will still not be able to adjust status because INA".

                      Properly served Order of Removal tells alien exactly what to do and warns of consequences of not obeying such order.
                      Under current INA, Alien who is ordered removed but stays and applies for any kind of benefit at any time later, is ineligible to receive such benefit and may permanently be barred from ever applying or receiving any immigration benefit.

                      Some exceptions apply under very narrow circumstances (motion to reopen and etc.)

                      Regards,
                      IE

                      Comment



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