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Democrats proposal for Immigration

Posted by on May. 2, 2010 at 11:47 PM
  • 2 Replies

I am trying to find other articles but I can only get this and the huff post ... which is more of an opinion.. if someone has one that is less opinionated and more informative I would appreciate it greatly


Will politics trump needed reform..?  

      By DR James J Zogby President, ARAB AMERICAN INSTITUTE,  Posted on » Monday, May 03, 2010

Last week, the Senate's Democratic leadership advanced a proposal for comprehensive immigration reform that contains provisions long supported by Republicans. The framework calls for:

l Enhancing and strengthening border security;

l Tough sanctions on employers who violate immigration laws;

l A bio-metric national ID card;

l Pegging new immigration quotas to economic needs (with allowance for family reunification); and

l Providing a "tough but fair" path to citizenship for the 11 million "undocumenteds" currently in the US

In the past major US businesses and many Republicans have supported similar provisions and, therefore, one might assume that this compromise framework would win GOP support speeding the way to much-needed comprehensive immigration reform. But, in the current political environment, the prospects for such rational discourse and compromise appear slim.

In fact, much of this announced framework was the result of a bipartisan effort led by Democratic Senator Charles Schumer (NY) and Republican Senator Lindsay Graham (SC). They have been working on a compromise approach hoping to draw at least one other Republican into the effort, before formally introducing legislation. What prompted the Democratic leadership to act was the signing into law of a bill in Arizona that allows state and local law enforcement officials to use the dangerously loose standard of "reasonable suspicion" to stop individuals and require them to show proof of legal status in the country.

Democrats roundly criticised the new law (both on the basis of its opening the door to racial profiling and its unconstitutional usurpation by state and local governments of a matter that is the prerogative of the federal government). Republicans were divided, with some sharing the same concerns as their Democratic colleagues, while others praised the Arizona governor for taking a tough stand to secure her state.

It is interesting to note that although they clearly disagreed on the merits and the legality of the law, both the Arizona governor and President Obama agreed on one point: that passage of this law resulted from the failure of the federal government to act to solve the problems posed by our nation's porous borders and the presence of millions of undocumented workers in the US. It was this challenge to act that prompted the Democratic leadership to announce the framework for reform.

Everyone knows what the problems are and the difficulties involved in addressing them. The immigration system is understaffed, underfunded and broken. While corrective measures have been taken to strengthen border security, in many areas they remain open to illegal crossings. There are millions of undocumented workers already in the US - many of them married with US citizen children. They live in fear of deportation. In some instances, employers have taken advantage of these individuals, exploiting their cheap labour. And even in the case of those who entered legally as visitors or students, and have overstayed, the system has no way to track them and enforce the law.

Everyone also knows what can not be done and should not be considered. It is unacceptable even to imagine the round-up and mass deportation of millions of decent and hardworking individuals and their families. It is also clear what limits there are to the ability of under-resourced immigration services to handle this problem. And some businesses and communities complain that removal of "undocumenteds" will place undue hardships on them. And so, it is clear that a solution must be found that both secures the nation's borders and enhances immigration enforcement, while providing for a humane, smart yet tough remedy to the problem of those "undocumenteds" who are already here.

This, however, is an election year occurring in the context of a deepening partisan divide where finding smart solutions is of secondary concern to some. We saw the same situation play out over efforts to resolve the nation's healthcare crisis (35 to 40 million uninsured - with numbers growing daily due to increased unemployment, rapid increases in healthcare costs and insurance premiums, and the tyranny of unreasonable conditions imposed by insurance companies). Here too, politics trumped, with Republicans united in efforts to block legislation that included many of the very proposals they had advanced in the past.

This year, Democrats face political challenges from the nation's growing Latino population (they are currently 13.5 per cent of the US population and growing, and tend to vote heavily Democratic) and they are pressing for immediate reform. Some Republicans, on the other hand, are facing a revolt from the nativist far-right which has caused some who previously backed reform to now oppose it. A case in point is Senator John McCain of Arizona. In the past McCain championed the very framework now being proposed. Facing a Republican primary challenge from the right, McCain has now become an opponent of reform.

Since some vulnerable and/or conservative Democrats will also place political considerations ahead of needed reform, should the effort to fix the nation's broken system fail to find a few GOP supporters, it is unlikely that the effort will succeed. As a result of this inaction, the problem will remain, states like Arizona will continue to take the law into their own hands, and immigrants, both legal and illegal, will continue to live in fear of profiling by overzealous law enforcement officials.


The Democrats' New Immigration Plan: Outdoing Arizona in Bigotry

The "Democrats" finally revealed their immigration plan today.

What's not to like about this proposal -- if you're that bigoted woman poor Gordon Brown has had to apologize to?

Actually, the Democrats already revealed an immigration plan in December. But Luis Gutierrez is some kind of angry brown man, and I think Pelosi is too, so that doesn't count. White people in the Senate have finally had their say.

This spawn of Schumer's devilish head has everything a power-mad DHS bureaucrat could desire. Immigrants are presumed criminals and terrorists before they're given a chance to be half-treated as humans. That's the whole thrust of the bill. Immigrants are presumed criminals or terrorists. The burden of proof is on them.

Read on and on for pages about enhanced border security, punishing criminal aliens, pushing them to the back of the line (we now have a number on the back of the line: it's eight years), making their lives as hard as possible if they come forward--and they will have to, otherwise they will be vaporized. Like in Men in Black.

Why should people who have already been here for ten, twenty, thirty or more years go to the back of the line? Shouldn't they--with children, spouses, jobs, lives here--be way in the front of the line?

The whole emphasis is on registration, registration, registration. This used to be the ugliest word in the political vocabulary. In anything other than that bigoted Gordon Brown woman's world, it still should be.

This is the Democrats' proposal to fix immigration? Ronald Reagan would choke.

A week has gone by since Arizona decided to formalize the criminalization of immigrants--taking its cues from the Obama administration. Not once has Obama forcefully said that the bill will be knocked down as unconstitutional.

Instead, this is how the bought-and-paid-for mind of our "constitutional law" professor-president works: a) Arizona and other states will pass fascist laws; b) We can do nothing about that; c) Therefore, we must pass our own fascist laws before they do it for us.

Biometric IDs. Militarized border up to our necks. Criminal checks. DHS personnel everywhere to detect document fraud. DHS personnel everywhere to monitor the entry and exit of every single person. A machine-like system the Nazis would have been proud of to INSTANTLY identify and deport anyone overstaying a legal visa. Just come after them, knock down their door, and take 'em out.

They have used the word "fortification" to describe America's border security. Fortification is right. They don't have English majors in Schumer's or Napolitano's office to think about the ramifications of words. Unmanned aircraft systems. Remote video surveillance systems. Mobile surveillance systems. All with Nazi acronyms.

Non-citizens undergoing deportation proceedings must inform the government of their location at all times. Every effort will be made to ensure that they deport voluntarily. "New crimes" will be created in the matter of document fraud and use.

Additional ports-of-entry will have enhanced connectivity to check fingerprint databases to screen out potential criminals. More will be done to let border patrol have the additional "tools" (whenever a government passes a fascist law, it's neutrally described as a tool--we're just trying to separate the criminal Japanese from the law-abiding ones: internment is just a tool), but they will be trained to avoid racial profiling. Sound like the justification of the Arizona law to you? The officers will be equipped with weapons. All other agencies of the government will be subservient to this mission of separating the criminal from the non-criminal parts of the immigrant population.

As for the biometric identification card, "under no circumstances" will medical or personal or position-tracking information be coded. Very reassuring! The Social Security administration will follow the model used by private companies to screen individuals' backgrounds before issuing the cards. Great model to follow!

To get a job in America your employer will swipe your biometric card on a machine. If within 24 hours the employer can't confirm that you're legal, tough luck, you lose your job. Of course, you'll have the right to administrative appeal. You may even win back lost wages!

Getting and keeping a job--just any job--in this country will become the most terrifying thing. Any moment you could be wiped out--if wiping your card doesn't result in positive identification. Workers of America, rest assured: Homeland Security will work with the Social Security Administration to ensure that the database for 300 million of us is perfectly accurate. You can count on it. Employers will be forbidden to practice discriminatory use of the system (appropriately called the BELIEVE system, as in George Bush's faith-based world).

There will also be a national birth and death registration system. You will not be able to die without being harassed. Unless you look like Elin Nordegren.

Criminal immigrants will pay to fund this whole system.

For new categories of temporary workers, all sorts of bureaucratic agencies will determine what happens. The Commission on Employment-Based Immigration will work its wonders. It will have infinite foresight to collect and evaluate all economic data to predict and determine employment levels. (While they're at it, they'll also figure out derivatives.) This Commission will have the power to "declare an emergency in America's immigration system." An emergency? Like with a recession? Will we be permanently at code orange, if the recession lasts ten years?

As a criminal illegal immigrant, after completing the joyful process of registration, you'll have the great privilege of living in limbo for eight more years--a new status will be created for you, so employers can use your labor, while you wait and wonder. You'll be a Lawful Prospective Immigrant. Eight years! You're already here, and cleared of any possible criminal wrongdoing after ten, twenty, thirty years. You'll have eight more years of probation. Then there'll be an updated criminal and terrorist check. You'll understand what it's like for South Asian and Filipino workers in the Gulf Arab states.

In the old Soviet Union, the hardest thing was to move around and just get a job. Or to quit one and start somewhere else if you didn't like it. Or just raise hell with your employer if he was an asshole. That's the path we'd like to follow. Mayor Bloomberg, this is collective national suicide.

A whole slew of government agencies will interfere with every aspect of getting and keeping a job--for all 300 million Americans--as the price of satisfying the bigots.

by on May. 2, 2010 at 11:47 PM
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by Christy on May. 2, 2010 at 11:59 PM

 That second one sounds like something I know some people would say. I wonder about their sanity and am glad they are not more powerful than currently allowed. They would only like this if they were not subject to it. Perhaps, the best solution is something you could live with, if it happened to you.

by Joqui on May. 3, 2010 at 12:00 AM

I read it and was like WOAH over the top chill out that's not doing anything but making me scared LOL... but posted it anyway because I couldn't find anything else,... it is after all the huff post though lol

Quoting stormcris:

 That second one sounds like something I know some people would say. I wonder about their sanity and am glad they are not more powerful than currently allowed. They would only like this if they were not subject to it. Perhaps, the best solution is something you could live with, if it happened to you.

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