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As Senators Debate Immigration Bill, Frist Offers His Own

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  • As Senators Debate Immigration Bill, Frist Offers His Own

    As Senators Debate Immigration Bill, Frist Offers His Own

    By RACHEL L. SWARNS
    Published: March 17, 2006
    WASHINGTON, March 16 "” Senator Bill Frist, the Republican leader, introduced a stringent border security bill on Thursday, rejecting pleas from senators in his own party who appealed for more time to finish legislation that would create a guest worker program for foreigners and a legal remedy for millions of illegal immigrants already in the United States.

    Mr. Frist said his bill would include several measures already hammered out in negotiations under way in the Senate Judiciary Committee, which had included an increase in the number of border guards, more fencing along the Mexican border and faster deportation of illegal immigrants. But Mr. Frist's bill would not create the temporary worker program that President Bush has urged to legalize the status of the 11 million illegal immigrants thought to be in this country.

    "Our country needs security at our borders in order to slow the flow of illegal immigration and make America safer from foreign criminals and terrorists," said Mr. Frist, of Tennessee.

    Mr. Frist said he had decided to pre-empt the Judiciary Committee's work to ensure that the Senate meet his goal of holding a vote on immigration the week of March 27. He said the committee's legislation could replace his bill as the starting point for a floor debate if the senators completed their work in time.

    The decision put him at odds with Senator Arlen Specter, the Pennsylvania Republican who is chairman of the Judiciary Committee, and highlighted divisions within the Republican Party over immigration.

    "I think it is a colossal mistake to take this to the floor," Mr. Specter said early on Thursday. He sounded more conciliatory after meeting with Mr. Frist. Addressing reporters with Mr. Frist at his side, Mr. Specter said he would have preferred a different outcome but was optimistic that his committee could complete its legislation in time for it to be considered on the Senate floor..

  • #2
    As Senators Debate Immigration Bill, Frist Offers His Own

    By RACHEL L. SWARNS
    Published: March 17, 2006
    WASHINGTON, March 16 "” Senator Bill Frist, the Republican leader, introduced a stringent border security bill on Thursday, rejecting pleas from senators in his own party who appealed for more time to finish legislation that would create a guest worker program for foreigners and a legal remedy for millions of illegal immigrants already in the United States.

    Mr. Frist said his bill would include several measures already hammered out in negotiations under way in the Senate Judiciary Committee, which had included an increase in the number of border guards, more fencing along the Mexican border and faster deportation of illegal immigrants. But Mr. Frist's bill would not create the temporary worker program that President Bush has urged to legalize the status of the 11 million illegal immigrants thought to be in this country.

    "Our country needs security at our borders in order to slow the flow of illegal immigration and make America safer from foreign criminals and terrorists," said Mr. Frist, of Tennessee.

    Mr. Frist said he had decided to pre-empt the Judiciary Committee's work to ensure that the Senate meet his goal of holding a vote on immigration the week of March 27. He said the committee's legislation could replace his bill as the starting point for a floor debate if the senators completed their work in time.

    The decision put him at odds with Senator Arlen Specter, the Pennsylvania Republican who is chairman of the Judiciary Committee, and highlighted divisions within the Republican Party over immigration.

    "I think it is a colossal mistake to take this to the floor," Mr. Specter said early on Thursday. He sounded more conciliatory after meeting with Mr. Frist. Addressing reporters with Mr. Frist at his side, Mr. Specter said he would have preferred a different outcome but was optimistic that his committee could complete its legislation in time for it to be considered on the Senate floor..

    Comment


    • #3
      The bill number is S.2454. It's almost identical to Specter's bill minus the guest worker program. Frist has stated that Specter's bill would be substituted for his if they get it done on time.

      Comment


      • #4
        You can bet 1 against 100 that neither of "Guest Worker" proposals can survive House-Senate conference talks.

        Cinsidering above said, it is of rather symbolic consequence what action Senate would take on "temporary workers" profram.

        Good Luck,
        IE

        Comment


        • #5
          I wonder why some legislators insist upon making the same mistakes previously observed and corrected by the Courts. Over and over again Circuit Courts and the U.S. Supreme Court have spoken against the retroactive application of a statute. So, removed because of a third DUI offense? That's not going to be supported by the Courts. A defendant must "reasonably expect such negative implications upon the entry of a plea or an official finding of guilt".

          Comment


          • #6
            This bill will bring some comfort for legal immigration people. This is the same as Specter's sans the controversial "Guest Worker" program. Considering this year is an election year, I do not think that this "Guest Worker" program will have any popularity and anything combined with it, is very difficult to be passed.

            Sensing that in advance Frist sensibily proposed an alternate one, which can be passed in the house.

            Comment


            • #7
              Things are heating up:


              Reid Threatens Filibuster on Immigration
              Mar 22 9:52 PM US/Eastern
              Email this story

              By ELLIOT SPAGAT
              Associated Press Writer


              SAN DIEGO


              As the Senate prepares to tackle the most sweeping immigration reforms in years, a top Democrat vowed Wednesday to do everything in his power, including filibuster, to thwart Majority Leader Bill Frist's proposed overhaul.

              Minority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., said he would "use every procedural means at my disposal" to prevent Frist from bypassing the Judiciary Committee. Frist, R-Tenn., has made clear the Senate will take up his proposal next week if the 18-member committee fails to complete a broader bill.



              "If Leader Frist brings a bill to the floor that does not have the approval of the Judiciary Committee, it will not get out of the Senate," Reid told reporters at the San Ysidro border crossing, a few steps from Tijuana, Mexico.

              Bob Stevenson, a spokesman for Frist, did not immediately respond to a call Wednesday evening.

              Reid said the overhaul must include heightened border enforcement, a "guest worker" program and a "path to citizenship" for the estimated 11 million people in the United States illegally. He called legislation by Sens. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass., and John McCain, R- Ariz., a "good place to start."

              President Bush, in a State of the Union address two years ago, urged Congress to create a worker program under which participants could gain legal status for a specific time and then be required to return home. It would not provide an automatic path to citizenship.

              Frist unveiled a bill last week that sidesteps the question of temporary work permits. It would tighten borders, punish employers who hire illegal immigrants and provide more visas.

              Comment


              • #8
                Just read an interesting article on the Frist bill. If there isn't a majority vote by the Republicans on the Judiciary Committee, then he's not going to allow Specters bill to get to the floor, instead he's going to force a vote on his bill without debate. He want's to get everyone on the record if his bill dies in the Senate.

                Here's the article:

                http://www.nytimes.com/2006/03/23/ny...23hillary.html

                Comment


                • #9
                  Like ive always said, the democrats are 100% behind a guest worker prgram and this is why an enforcenment-only bill has zero chance of passing the senate..The guest worker program, not only have the backing of all democrats, but moderate republicans and even hard-liners that live in states like new york, california,florida, where the spanish votes could come back and bite them if they ever voted for a bill that criminalizes their family members.

                  Anyway, im glad Minority leader, Harry Reid threatened to fillubuster any bill that does not have the judiciary's approval.

                  Did frist really said that he will not allow specter's bill to be put on a vote if he didnt have the full support from the the commitee? I read somewhere that he said that as long as th bill passed the commitee, then he would pull out his terrible bill and let specter bill get up for a vote.

                  Anyway, i definaly hink they should fillubuster frist bill if he decides to put his terrible bill for a vote.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Mrs. Clinton said, "We want the outcome to be that they're on the wrong side of politics as well as on the wrong side of history and American values."


                    Sen. Clinton got it right !

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