Amnesty by any other name is still Amnesty
I hate reruns.
When it comes to illegal immigration, we have heard it all before. The borders will be secured. We promise. There will be a pathway to citizenship that would screen out criminals and increase worksite enforcement provisions. Scout’s honor.
The plan being touted by Sen. Marco Rubio, a Florida Republican, is simply a recycling of old ideas and the same old promises which are never kept. It includes the very same eligibility requirements found in bills proposed in 2006 and 2007.
“There literally is nothing novel to his proposals,” said Bob Dane, the communications director of Federation of Americans for Immigration Reform, an advocacy organization for legal immigration. Rubio is trying to triangulate all of these competing special interests that want to be at the table. It really is just Groundhog Day, it is a sequel of 2007.”
Dane added, Rubio is being pressured by “the business lobby and the Chamber of Commerce” to support this plan because those groups are leading the charge for cheap labor. In addition, Dane said, “The Republicans are operating under this false premise that they need to capture the Hispanic (vote) via amnesty.”
Still, Rubio’s plan is getting support from conservative heavy hitters like Fox’s Sean Hannity and Representative Paul Ryan, a Wisconsin Republican. Hannity said, “I got to be honest. I think it’s the most thoughtful bill that I have heard heretofore.” Ryan said on his Facebook page, “Senator Rubio is exactly right on the need to fix our broken immigration system. I support the principles he’s outlined.”
The truth is, the Republican party is setting itself up for its own destruction.
The GOP has an opportunity to re-establish itself with its core constituency by demonstrating its understanding of conservatives’ concerns about mass immigration and the impact on job markets. They are going to make the mistake of pandering to Hispanic voters and wind up empty-handed. They will not, at least in the short term, get the support of Hispanics and they will lose the support of conservatives.
If the Republicans support Rubio’s plan, at least four things will happen, all of them bad for the GOP. First, the party will be split even more than it is now between establishment Republicans and conservative Republicans. Second, the Republican Party will alienate the working class. Third, the Democrats will TAKE the credit and GET the credit for the passage of Rubio’s proposal and it will not make Hispanics decide, all of a sudden, to vote for Republicans.
The GOP will have, again, caved to the Dems. Fourth, the Republicans will be “importing” themselves out of office because the overwhelming majority of illegals are government-dependent and have no connection with the message or platform of the GOP. Illegals who become citizens will vote for Democrats to keep their government benefits coming.
Analysis done by the Heritage Foundation indicates that while each illegal contributes about $10,000 a year to the economy, he/she consumes about $32,000 in taxpayer funded benefits. The average illegal doesn’t want citizenship, he/she wants the $32,000. The illegals who arrive in America from Mexico come from a socialist state. They are accustomed to thinking it is the government’s job to hand out goodies, and since America is wealthier than Mexico, they can get more goodies here. So they come and they keep on coming.
Rubio insists illegals will not be eligible for federal benefits once they come “out of the shadows.” The fact is, many of them are getting those benefits now. Why would they put those benefits at risk when Rubio’s “pathway to citizenship” might mean a ten-year wait to become legal?
Also, imagine the GOP’s public relations nightmare if the party was to try to revoke the benefits some illegals are already receiving. If you think Republicans are labeled “heartless” and “uncaring” now, you just wait. Rubio and his Republican buddies would almost certainly not be able to stand up to that kind of pressure. His words sound tough, but, like so many times before, they would probably end up being empty threats.
Sen. John McCain, a Republican from Arizona, says the Rubio plan is almost identical to the one the late Ted Kennedy proposed. That alone should give any conservative pause. If it still has Kennedy’s fingerprints on it, it better be examined very closely. There is a “Chappaquiddick” in there somewhere.
So, what should the Republicans do? How do you handle a problem that involves 12,000,000 illegal aliens? It is going to take some bold leadership and I’m not sure the GOP has anyone in its ranks who has the stomach for a huge fight.
Since I am not IN office and I am not RUNNING for office, I will put a proposal on the table and encourage some brave politician to give it a shot. It would be called “The Pathway To Leaving Bill.” It would have provisions that would make it easier for illegals to leave the country. It would give them plenty of time to get their house in order and return to their native countries.
The first part of the plan would be to make absolutely sure the border is secure for three reasons. First, to keep terrorists from sneaking in. Second, to keep the drug runners out of America where there is a huge market for their products. Third, to prevent illegals from continuing to pour into this country.
The security of the border would be virtually guaranteed with a fence—a tall fence, a thick fence, a strong fence—running from one end of our border with Mexico to the other. Beyond that, the National Guard would be used to secure the border. If that doesn’t work, America’s armed forces would be used. It is a matter of national security.
The second part of the plan would be designed to give illegals a pathway to leaving. It would involve four steps and would cover a period of 12 years. In phase one, the 3,000,000 illegals who have come to this country most recently would be given four years to return to their native countries. If they do not do this voluntarily, at the end of three years, the government will revoke all benefits, all drivers’ licenses and all working privileges in that last year. If that does not work, deportations will begin.
The second, third and fourth phases will also be for 3,000,000 illegals at a time and will involve a four-year process. If this plan is faithfully carried out, over time, the infusion of new illegals will be stopped and the exit of illegals already in the country will be complete.
That is not a rerun.
Ed Baswell is the host of “Crossfire Radio,” Monday through Friday, 7-9 am, on The Promise, 90.7 FM. The show is streamed live at promisetalkradio.org.