Hamilton, Madison, and Jay

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Location: Mesa, Arizona, United States

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Monday, June 11, 2007

A few links on one particular issue

If President Bush thought he was going to get a pass on trying the immigration bill again, then he's numb from the brain down. The vast majority of the nations wasn't happy with this bill at all, and they just got meaner and nastier the more the debate dragged on. Those within his inner circle, and water-carriers like those at the Wall Street Journal can delude themselves in the belief that no one in their right mind can oppose this bill.

If that's the case, color us crazy.

But on with the links. Over at Hot Air, Allah picked up on the Jeff Sessions response to the president. In short, during the video, he tells the president to "back off." Here, here, senator.

Next comes Robert Rector from the Heritage Foundation responds to the Wall Street Journal again on the immigration bill. One would think by now the Editors at the Journal would find, get, or buy a clue.

At Hugh Hewitt's site, the transcripts are up for his interviews with Senator Jim DeMint and Rudy Giuliani. From Rudy on the immigration bill:

HH: They were, three of the Fort Dix six were in the country illegally. I’m not sure about the travel of the Kennedy Airport four. But did you think the recent draft immigration bill dealt seriously with this particular aspect of the problem of people in this country illegally who might be jihadists?

RG: Hugh, I came to the conclusion that it made it worse.

HH: How?

RG: I would have voted against it just on the grounds that we’re better off the way we are now than the change that we’re going to make, and we’re not in good shape right now. But if you look at what Congress passed, you know, last year, with the fence, technological fence, increase in Border Patrol, if anything, this bill would cut back on that. And the President is better off with the situation the way it is right now. I believe, and that was my second commitment, that you can end illegal immigration without anymore legislation. You have the authorization to build a big part of the fence. You can supplement that with a technological fence that would spot people and alert the Border Patrol to people coming over the border. You could use a border stat program like my compstat program to reduce crime, to strategically place the Border Patrol like we used to do with the police. And you could have a tamper-proof ID card for everyone, and a requirement that everybody that comes into the country has to be identified and in a database. And if you did that, and you did it consistently over a 12 to 18 month period, you’d come pretty close to ending illegal immigration at the border. And if we could show the American people that we could stop it at the border, then the rest of this stuff that’s being debated, I think you could come to a more reasonable accommodation about it. But right now, people look at the things that Ted Kennedy wants to do, and people who are compromising with him, and they say my goodness, I mean, this is just going to…if we don’t get control over our borders, this 12 million’s going to become 20 million.

HH: Among those 12 million are tens of thousands, according to the San Antonio Express News, of illegal immigrants from countries of interest, as the State Department calls them, countries with known jihadist networks. Should we have a separate category for illegals from those countries? Not because they’re all jihadist, but because there will be jihadist among them.

RG: You have to do, you have to have priorities in law enforcement, or in this kind of enforcement. And if there are areas of the world where there’s more of a tendency to produce people that are going to come here and kill us, and hurt us and destroy us, that’s a realistic piece of intelligence, you’ve got to apply that in the way that you’re handling it. And the reality is, I mean, the Senate voted down a provision that would create priorities for illegals who commit a crime. I mean, I can’t imagine anybody doesn’t agree with this. Somebody comes here illegally, and then they commit a crime, shouldn’t they be thrown out of the country immediately?

HH: Well, I agree with that. I’m just wondering if we have to get serious, and that political correctness prevents us from being serious about people from countries with jihadist networks.

RG: I don’t think we’re even close to that point, meaning the situation is so confused with the immigration service, that they’re not able to set priorities like that. Should they be able to do it? Yes, you’re absolutely right. They should be able to do it. They should be able to take intelligence that suggests that from one part of the world, there’s substantially more danger than from another, and apply it. That’s good law enforcement. That’s like a police officer saying when somebody describes the criminal as being six foot tall, you don’t go looking for somebody who’s five foot five.

From Senator DeMint:

HH: Well, give us a look inside the room today when the President sat down with the Republican Study Group for lunch. What happened?

JD: Well, it was one of those meetings I wish every American could have been there, because the President came in, he was very warm, he made it clear he was not there to twist arms but to listen. He made his case very simply that he felt like we needed to do something, but a number of Senators were quick to respond that there were already laws in place that they felt we needed to go ahead and enforce, implement, particularly border security, and I didn’t end up having to say anything, Hugh, because the supporters of the bill basically said we need to do some implementation of other laws before we pass this bill.

HH: Now Senator DeMint, I’ll have Tony Snow on next hour. He’s been out making the rounds, and he’s telling everyone that he expects the bill to come back with a number of changes to it, for a final effort to get it through. I’ve also seen your colleague, Senator Chambliss, a great conservative telling…and a supporter of the bill as it was, that you need a supplemental appropriation of $10-15 billion for border security, fence construction, et cetera. Do you support the supplemental idea prior to an immigration bill getting passed?

JD: Yes, I do, and I don’t see a quick passing of immigration after that. What I think some of the Senators were saying today that I agree with, we need a supplemental bill that funds the border security, and the American people need to see that happening before we get back to how to deal with these illegals who are here.

HH: And so, what would that supplemental entail, Senator DeMint? What kind of ideas get thrown into that?

JD: Well, we’ve actually passed a bill already, Hugh. Last year, we…I mean, this was a border security bill with some barriers and fencing, and high technology, and new border agents, but we never funded it. And I think that’s what a lot of people around the country are saying, hey, you said you were going to give us border security, but you never did it. Why should we believe that you’re going to do it in this new bill? And what it comes down to, most people think we’re going to give amnesty to 12 million people, but we’re not going to follow through on the other things. And I think we need to take a few months, maybe a year, and move on border security, develop the worker ID program, and then deal with the illegals.

HH: Now do you expect Democrats would support a supplemental appropriations first strategy?
JD: Probably not. It was very hard to get border security passed last year, and their intent, Hugh, appears to be, they want a lot of new permanent residents who can eventually vote. And the guest workers, which a lot of our industries need, they don’t support. And the skilled workers that our high tech industry needs, they don’t generally support. And so I think to move ahead with just a funding of security, I imagine they’ll balk on it.

HH: Now Senator DeMint, they…no one eventually gets to vote unless they start down the path. The path doesn’t start. So do the Republicans have the leverage they need to get Teddy Kennedy to move toward seriousness, for example, on probationary benefits? I’ll be talking to Tony Snow about that. 601h is a nightmare. Do you expect that Senator Kyl will get the concessions of the minimum sort, at least, to revive the bill?

JD: Hugh, I don’t think we’ll get any concessions. For instance, I had an amendment last week that would have required these Z visa holders to have a minimum level of health insurance, which is a high deductible policy, so that they don’t shift that cost onto the American taxpayer. You can get a policy like that for about $116 dollars a month on average. It doesn’t cover the first couple of thousand, but it would cover critical illnesses, and real expensive things that people end up in the emergency room with. But that amendment failed, and so we’re just dumping the cost of immigration onto the taxpayer, when we should be making it beneficial to not only the immigrants, but to the American taxpayer.

HH: So stepping back, Senator DeMint, despite the happy talk from Tony Snow on Fox News earlier today, what we’ll hear on this program later, you just don’t see this bill getting out of critical care?

JD: Not anytime soon. I think it would be a real mistake for the Republican leadership up in the Senate to bring it up right away after the resounding defeat last week, and before we do more border security. Hopefully, they won’t make that mistake.

For those out there that think we're just a bunch of nativist crazies that don't want this because we're against Mexicans or Latinos coming here, think again. We've got no problem with ANYONE coming here LEGALLY. But in a post-11 September world, we need to know who those people are. Not only do we not want criminals here, but we don't want jihadis here. There needs to be adjustments to the immgration bill, especially on 601(h) (the Z-Visa provisions) that will make this bill mose sensible. More emphasis needs to be put on security and enforcement, and as Jeff Sessions has stated, nothing is preventing the president from moving forward right now with the security and enforcement provisions. As a matter of fact, it might help swing the nation to be backers of this bill, rather than opposers.

America is sick of the lip service from Washington, DC. We want proof the government is going to be serious about this issue. As yet, they haven't done that. They weren't serious back in 1986, and they haven't taken the issue seriously since then. America wants to see that the government gets it that this issue is deadly serious, not only from a national security point-of-view, but also from an economic secuirty point-of-view. If they're not going to get that clue, then we're better off letting this bill die, and starting over from square one.

Publius II


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