The Convention, Corruption, and Immigration

The Convention is over and I’m a bit surprised that no one has launched a more comprehensive discussion of the winners and losers, observations, discussion of Erick’s challenge to talk to Linder, or the surprising intensity about the feelings on immigration. 

I’m going to attempt to start the conversation here in a constructive manner and I hope all others will join in. 

Convention Winners: A tip of the hat from Bull Moose to the organizers (national and local) of the draft Fred Thompson effort.  Kudos to the efforts of the Cagle team and Presence with a Purpose.  Classy act award to Karen Handel for really recognizing and respecting the people who helped her get elected.  Refreshing sincerity from Sue Everheart.  Another class act award to Buzz Brockway.  And triple crown awards to the brave House Members for promoting “Real Republicans Cut Taxes” effort.  And double tip of the hat to Alec Poitevint for his tireless service to Georgia Republican Party.  Demonstration of political courage awards to Senators Isakson and Chambliss.  Young Republicans, The Republican Liberty Caucus, and the Conservative Bloggers of Peach Pundit for being the conscience of the Georgia Republican Party. 

Funny Moment Most Talked About: Mitt Romney recognizing his good friend Gary Bauer (Ralph Reed). 

Convention Losers: Sonny Perdue may be the Governor, but I don’t know what his talk was about on Saturday.  Just because our Congressmen and constitutional officers have 5 minutes to speak, doesn’t mean they have to take 7 minutes to drone on about who knows what. 

Corruption: Bull Moose took the challenge and spoke to John Linder about Ken Calvert and his elevation by the House Steering Committee to the House Appropriations Committee (Debbie was a witness).  Not only did Linder refuse to answer how he voted, he got very testy, said his vote was a secret, and that Calvert has done nothing wrong, is not under investigation and that I didn’t have my facts straight.  I was actually very shocked at the rudeness of Mr. Linder in addressing the matter.  Someone is cracking under pressure a little bit it seems!  Keep up the pressure Erick, maybe we’ll have an answer one day as to how he voted.

Immigration:  It’s odd that some were attacking Saxby and Isakson over the immigration deal even though none had likely read any part or portion of the bill and were only trusting rhetorical talking points in their opposition. 

This bill is NOT amnesty.  Illegal workers must acknowledge that they broke the law, pay a $1,000 fine, and undergo criminal background checks to obtain a Z visa granting temporary legal status.  To apply for a green card at a date years into the future, Z visa workers must wait in line behind those who applied lawfully, pay an additional $4,000 fine, complete accelerated English requirements, leave the U.S. and file their application in their home country, and demonstrate merit based on the skills and attributes they will bring to the United States.  Workers approved for Z visas will be given a temporary legal status, but they will not enjoy the full privileges of citizens or Legal Permanent Residents, such as welfare benefits and the ability to sponsor relatives abroad as immigrants. 

This bill SECURES the border.  Border security benchmarks must be met before the Z visa and temporary worker programs go into effect.  These triggers include: constructing 370 miles of fencing and 200 miles of vehicle barriers at the border and increasing the size of the Border Patrol to 18,000 agents.

This bill will STOP the rush to the border.  To be eligible to apply for a Z visa, illegal immigrants must prove they were in the country prior to January 1, 2007.  Anyone caught crossing the border after the new law passes will be fingerprinted and permanently barred from receiving work or tourist visas from the U.S., creating a strong disincentive to illegal immigration.

Those are just a few points in regards to the convention. 

60 comments

  1. GOPeach says:

    Okay Bull…

    As for Friday Night:

    I saw Sue and ASH getting their pictures made together. That was really nice. It made me smile.

    I over heard Newt ask Dr. Cindye Coates to run for State House one more time. Ralph Reed and Sen. Cecil Staton agreed. I know she was at the convention Saturday. She will not say if she is running in ’08. 3rd time is the charm.

    I heard Speaker Glenn Richardson said,” We are not hereto get along, we are here to GET A JOB DONE!” WOW !!! GLENN fir GOV!

    I am a little tired of all this “Go Along and Get Along” business. This is good Preachin!

  2. Bull Moose says:

    Um, we’re barely through 2007 and a long way till 2010, it’s enough already GOPeach. Give it a rest for a bit.

  3. Holly says:

    Bull,

    Well stated on most accounts.

    Boo for me not thinking to bring a “just in case” roll of Jim Whitehead stickers on Saturday morning. I needed them.

    I’d add Bob Matthews and Rob Doll to the convention winners, along with Buzz Brockway. All three had the willingness to step up and try for a big position in the party. I was especially proud of the grace that Buzz showed, and I think he’s going to go far in the party. That’s my prediction anyway.

    Yay for Buzz convincing me to get Twitter. I’ll have a name and all shortly. That was a promise that I’m intending to keep.

    Yay for Charlie Norwood being given the Coverdell Award.

    Yay for Lynn Westmoreland’s speech. He’s growing on me.

    Kudos to Saxby and Johnny for promising to talk to us about the immigration bill. I have sent my concerns and am waiting for a response. I’m still reserving judgment on this thing until they answer me.

    Where was Nathan Deal?

    Boo for the nasty headache I got from not eating until 3:30 on Saturday. Oops.

  4. Bull Moose says:

    Yes, sorry, I was very impressed with Rob Doll too. He was very energetic. He’s very enthusiastic and seems to be a great motivator.

  5. GOPeach says:

    Good!!!

    If you are going to have on white shoes – you need to be perky!!!

    Plus… He did say he was a Christian!

    Good for him!

    Okay… I’m in! A Christian is white shoes!
    ( Does he look like Benny Hinn?) 🙂

  6. GOPeach says:

    “He did say he was a Christian! ” LOL
    I sound like go to Vernon Jones’ church!

    What I meant to say…

    He SAID he was a Christian!

  7. UGA Wins 2006 says:

    Bull, What is it about this Immigration “Compromise” that gives you hope of success? Not a single immigration reform measure has worked since the mid 80s simply because the federal government has refused to enforce its own laws. This sham will be no different and only rewards illegal behavior. You disappoint me.

  8. I completely agree with UGA Wins 2006. How stupid does Congress think we are if they expect us to trust them that the “triggers” or quasi-security measures will ever actually secure the border? We were promised that in 1986 and were screwed over. We will get the shaft again.

    I don’t care if there are 3,000,000 border guards and 2000 miles of fence. Without the willingness on behalf of our treasonous government to actually enforce the laws and do what is necessary, it won’t matter in the least.

    This is the one issue that will drive me from the Republicans forever (although it won’t matter much — importing tens of millions of new Dem voters will spell the death of the Republican Party anyway). I’ll probably just check out of politics. I’m a conservative and there is no one in Washington who will stand up for conservative values, then I’m not going to try to keep turning the Titanic.

  9. Bull Moose says:

    Well, UGA Wins 2006 and Rightonpeachtree, I guess you both are fine with the status quo of what we have today then.

    I’ll take 75% of an improvement over a 0 any day of the week and twice on Tuesday.

    Stop being such shortsighted incompetents.

  10. joe says:

    Bull Moose,

    All I ever asked for was secure borders and repatriation of 12 million illegals. Are you saying that this will secure 75% of the border and get rid of 9 million illegals? If so, it might not be a bad start, but you know better. The popular word in DC today is “benchmarks” . How about a benchmark that would sunset this bill if 1 million do not return in the first year? We wouldn’t be stuck with amnesty very long that way, and if I am wrong and everybody returns to their own country, then we can all be happy.

  11. JRM2016 says:

    Big Loser: The convention staff decided to prohibit signs being posted anywhere on the convention floor and for being distributed to supporters of candidates for party office. There were also constant orders barked to anyone walking to and from the floor to “get in your seat”. This was supposed to be a political convention. Have you ever heard of a political convention without signs? Oh, and no one was informed of this “rule” until the convention was underway. We all need to stand up for free speech/free expression at our political conventions. If we cannot express ourselves there, where can we?

  12. IndyInjun says:

    They better close the Border and do it PDQ.

    The Cantorell oil field produces 40% of the revenue of Mexico’s government and it suddenly went in DRAMATIC decline last year. Oil revenues could drop to nearly zero in less than 10 years.

    If we don’t secure the borders we are going to be overrun.

    Rightonpeachtree I am with you totally. Chambliss is an IMPOSTER without the immigration issue, yet the Peachpunditeers are content to let the state GOP chairwoman tell us he is not going to have a challenge within the party.

    Erick finally sees that sticking with those who betrayed us will mean the death of the GOP.

    They lost this supporter and contributor in October 2002.

    The Dems are now the lesser of evils.

  13. UGA Wins 2006 says:

    “Stop being such shortsighted incompetents.”

    Bull, you trust this US government to do the right thing on immigration reform? What is the basis or your trust? Please share with me how you can trust a government that has not carried through on a single promise it has made on immigration. Where is our 700 mile wall Congress funded, for instance?
    Being incompetant, I want to hear your grounds for trusting the government. Show me the way oh enlightened one.

  14. Know Nothing says:

    Thank you Bull Moose for coming to the defense of both our senators. While people at the convention might boo both Johnny and Saxby it shows that they must surely have a short memory.

    It was last summer that Senator Isakson proposed an amendment to S.2611 which would have essential mandated benchmarks on border security before any guest worker program could be implemented. At the time, the position was contrary to the position of the GOP leadership (i.e. Frist and McConnel and Spector) and Isakson took a stand against his own leadership as a freshman. His amendment was defeated and when it was, the press picked it up and the GOP senators who voted down the amendment were forced to answer as to why.

    To make a long story short, the reason S.2611 was never reconciled in conference is because of the politics behind the scenes because of Isakson’s amendment. GOP Senators who had originally supported S.2611 ultimately decided against it. You should thank the Senator for that.

  15. GOPeach says:

    Saxby is a good man… Better than MAX!
    eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeek!

    How many people remember the old
    ” Don’t Rock the Boat Johnny” commercials?

    Well…. DO ROCK the BOAT JOHNNY!!!

  16. Holly says:

    I don’t think Johnny and Saxby’s positions on immigration have changed.

    I think I’m still trying not to have an opinion until I get the long list of questions I have answered by their staffs, but it’s hard.

    I think we’re forgetting that Saxby and Johnny are in the minority party. They do not control floor votes. They could never get a bill they totally liked passed through the Congress at this point. As Know Nothing points out, they couldn’t even accomplish that with a Republican-controlled Senate.

    There will be an immigration bill with or without their imput. I would much rather have an immigration bill with their imput, I think.

    I really think we’re trying to tar and feather them too fast. Saxby and Johnny both said to talk to them. Bring them questions. That’s what I’ve chosen to do.

    I think they have represented me well so far, a few votes aside. I’m resigned to the fact that I’m never going to like 100% of what any politician does. As long as I get in the 85% and above range, I’ll generally be all right.

    Does that mean that I’m going to like this bill? No. Does it mean I’m going to listen to their reasoning before I start calling for them to be run out of town with pitchforks? Yes.

  17. IndyInjun says:

    Saxby and Johnny are irresponsibly wild spenders who have spent America into virtual bankruptcy.

  18. Bull Moose,

    You call me incompetent, but I can handle basic math. Apparently, you can’t.

    Right now we have 12 million. The new bill opens the door for 50-100 million (at a net cost to the country of $100K/immigrant/lifetime, acc. to the Heritage Foundation).

    No bill is FIVE times better than a bad bill.

    Cities and states around the country are cracking down themselves on illegals. The idiots in Washington saw that the tide was turning and we “commoners” are finally fed up with this, and they decided to try to push through this shamnesty bill. It a treasonous piece of legislation and should be treated as such.

    And don’t give me this nonsense about the GOP being a minority party and the inevitability of SOME kind of bill. It takes 41 to stop this. They have the votes and could/should stop it.

    This bill is a perfect recipe for the death of the Republican Party and the insolvency of this great nation. It truly is a WMD.

  19. Bull Moose says:

    Get control fanatics! I too am ticked about immigration, but unlike some of you, I understand that this is our last and best chance for real immigration reform.

    I also happen to trust US Senators Isakson and Chambliss to ensure that this bill works.

    Senator Isakson has staked out a clear position on this issue and I feel confident that his position of securing the border first and setting realistic benchmarks will work.

    Like Senator Chambliss said, 75% of a good bill is better than the status quo.

    Those of you who are just against this bill, please, I encourage you to understand the realities of the current political situation.

    We lost the elections in 2006. Do you not remember? Some of you who are so upset about this continue to elect Members of Congress who continue to do the same thing on immigration. Then you seem to want to throw under the buss those who are courageous enough to work to put an end to illegal immigration.

    It is one thing to offer rhetorical talking points on immigration, it’s something very much different to roll up your sleeves and go to work on the issue. Both Senators Chambliss and Isakson have done just that.

    One thing that should be added is that this bill come up for reauthorization every 5 years. That way, it can continuously be tweaked and improved.

    This ties back into corruption because, again, some of you who are so upset about this bill and the other problems with the Republican party continue to nominate and elect Republican Members of Congress who support the status quo. You’re being very contradictory when it comes to your frustration on the issues.

  20. IndyInjun says:

    Bull Moose –

    Lessee here. Our two senators ran for office as conservatives, but both voted for the biggest social spending program in 40 years.

    And you say you TRUST them?

    I started voting GOP when it could have gotten my butt kicked, but I will not vote for liars or senators who have done irreparable harm to this country.

    If the GOP cannot rediscover the values that put them in power and come up with GOP challengers for those who abandoned them, I will vote for the Dems.

    The GOP used to be a big tent, but we independents have left the building.

    The GOP cannot survive without us.

  21. joe says:

    BM,

    A bad bill is better than no bill?

    The bill is not even published yet, although the Heritage Foundation has a copy of the 362 page draft.

    The reported plan is to introduce the bill Monday and vote on it Monday. That stinks. It shows that the bill can not stand up to analysis. There is no reason to trust any DC politician. They have all worked against our interests.

  22. Harry says:

    Bull,

    Your guy McCain is not a very good advocate in this debate. According to NewsMax:

    Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz. and Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, launched into a shouting match during a Thursday Capitol Hill meeting, where reportedly the presidential candidate dropped the “F” word and more.

    According to reports in the Washington Post and the New York Post, Cornyn apparently got the former POW’s attention when he raised the issue about the number of judicial appeals that illegal immigrants could receive.

    In a meeting room just off the Senate floor, McCain opined that Cornyn was purposely raising petty objections to a compromise plan then being hammered out between Senate Republicans and Democrats and the White House.

    “This is chickens— stuff,” McCain fired at Cornyn, according to the news reports. “You’ve always been against this bill, and you’re just trying to derail it.”

    Not to be outdone, Cornyn accused McCain of being too occupied campaigning for president to take part in the negotiations.

    “Wait a second here,” Cornyn said to McCain. “I’ve been sitting in here for all of these negotiations and you just parachute in here on the last day. You’re out of line.”

    “F— you! I know more about this than anyone else in the room,” McCain reportedly rejoined.

    McCain, who has missed 42 votes this year, hasn’t been intimately involved in the comprehensive immigration reform debate for months.

    Reportedly, the shouting match was played out in front of a bipartisan group of senators and aides who had gathered in the meeting room.

  23. Bull Moose says:

    YOU ARE MISSING THE POINT…

    A bill on immigration that improves the problem and helps address the problem of illegal immigration is better than the status quo.

    There is no hidden agenda in that statement.

    I want an end to illegal immigration just like the rest of you people here, but I am living in reality and understand the realities of the political situation.

  24. Bull Moose,

    So you’re a McCain fan? That explains a lot. That’s why you call people like me, who just wants our government to prove that it will really ENFORCE THE LAWS, incompetent and fanatical. That’s nice ad hominem. Was that learned at the feet of McCain as well? His bout with Cornyn shows that he isn’t beyond personal insults either.

    When did enforcement of our laws become a pipe dream that’s relegated to the hopes of fanatical incompetents like me?

    And this “political reality” being what it is, where does the submissiveness stop? First, the GOP acquiesces on amnesty. Next, they’re just lining up now to rubber stamp all expansions of social programs and all tax increases proposed by the Dems. And the Dems want the war stopped? Hey, let’s pass it. That’s the new political reality!! I’m just being realistic! Why fight it?

    I believe you when you save that you want to address illegal immigration. And I believe you when you say that you think this is the best we can get.

    And on the latter, I also believe that you couldn’t be more wrong.

  25. UGA Wins 2006 says:

    Bull, You still didnt answer my basic question: Why would you trust the US Government to get immigration right this time when they have a record of complete failure and lack of will on the subject?

  26. Jace Walden says:

    I honestly doubt Bull Moose believes any of what he just said on immigration. I would bet that if McCain withdrew his sponsorship of this bill tomorrow, that Bull Moose would be preaching to us “incompetents” about how bad the immigration bill was.

    Bull carriers water for John McCain. That’s the extent of his convictions on this issue.

  27. jsm says:

    “Big Loser: The convention staff decided to prohibit signs being posted anywhere on the convention floor and for being distributed to supporters of candidates for party office.”

    JRM,

    Thanks for bringing this up. I had my “STOP THE PORK” and “CUT SPENDING” signs all ready to go and even walked them right out on the convention floor. After holding my pork sign up while Isakson spoke, the sign police came and confiscated my “contraband.” I asked them where this rule about no signs was stated, and they said it was in the call. I’ll be working on this until the next convention. I can’t imagine that free speech would be denied at a GOP convention. That’s just wrong. What angered me most was that when I asked Marty Klein if the committee was about denying free speech, his answer was, “Yep.”

  28. Know Nothing says:

    Why is everyone all of a sudden concerned with the government enforcing its laws? There are thousands of laws out there which go unenforced everyday, why are you all just now worried about it?

    Is it because if there is a temporary guest worker program, you might find yourseld competing with the formerly illegal aliens? Get an education and a set of skills and you’ll have nothing to worry about.

    If anyone replies and says it’s the principle of the matter, then you are in much worse shape than I originally thought.

  29. Jeff Emanuel says:

    Bull Moose, I agree with the first four of your five categories of comment. However, on the last one, I think you’re a little wet. Here’s why:

    It’s odd that some were attacking Saxby and Isakson over the immigration deal even though none had likely read any part or portion of the bill and were only trusting rhetorical talking points in their opposition.

    At this point, they had not read anything more than “talking points” either. The bill was not distributed until later on Saturday (still marked as a Draft), leaving the Senators 1 1/2 days to read it themselves before debate begins today. The final (draft) copy is 326 pages, and many things have changed from the outline the USSes received on Thursday afternoon when Senators McCain, Kennedy, and Specter were rushing to their triumphant press conference.

    Even Senators who were working together on it were not on the same page regarding its contents; for example:

    at the same time that John Kyl (R-AZ) was on one news channel praising the bill’s elimination of chain migration — a key provision he himself had championed — [Harry] Reid was telling another network that that provision would not be in the bill’s final draft.

    Now, I’m not condemning this bill out of hand like so many others; however, I do have serious questions about (a) the way it was written (behind closed doors, with no plan to release it to the public until after it had been passed by the full Senate), about (b) its contents and whether even those who helped negotiate its contents really know what it says, and (c) about the hurriedness with which it was written and will be rammed through the senate, with no hearings, committe approval, testimony, auditing, public debate, or anything else which could potentially slow down its passage or alert the populace more to its actual contents.

    The big question here is, if this bill really is such a nation-changing piece of legislation, are we really comfortable going into it blindly — and do we really trust the 29%-approval-rating Congress (four points behind even the President) to undertake such a task with no oversight and no informing of the public before it is done?

  30. Holly says:

    I got an answer from Saxby’s staff for my list of questions on the immigration bill. Their answer was essentially “we don’t know yet, but we’ll answer you as soon as we do.” Considering that they’re voting today, I’m mildly freaked out. Some of those questions should have ready answers.

    Now, again, I’m not throwing rocks yet, but I am worried.

  31. UGA Wins 2006 says:

    Well Bull, explain to us why we should trust the US government to get it right this time.

  32. Donkey Kong says:

    I’m a Newt and Fred supporter (in that order…GO NEWT ;-), and I am (cautiously) supporting this bill. I only mention my presidential choice because BM is being accused of supporting the bill because he is a McCain fan.

    This bill is not ideal. But I think its the best option we have. The Republicans controlled both houses and we failed, FAILED, do to anything on immigration. We sat on our hands, used it as a political talking point, and did nothing. If the political trend continues, the Dems could pick up more seats in Congress and the Presidency in ’08. Our opportunity for substantial immigration reform that includes any of our desired enforcement elements would become negated. I agree with many that this bill is flawed. It leans far too close to amnesty than I would like. But it is perhaps the most moderate and fair bill we could possibly muster. Pelosi, the illegal immigrants, Mexico, and other Democrats are all complaining about this bill–doesn’t that tell you something? This bill is practical.

    The most common complaint I’ve heard about the bill is the speed of its attempted passage. Normally, I’d agree that we need to take time to review it. However, if this bill is not passed expeditiously, legislators from both parties will attach amendments that will doom its passage. Immigration reform is such an emotional issue that speed and efficiency in lawmaking becomes an absolute necessity. If we allow legislators and interest groups to stir up the populace into a partisan frenzy and permit them to attach amendments, our opportunity for real reform withers away. In principle, I prefer a long and deliberative approach. Rational deliberation in politics is quickly superseded by emotional, partisan banter. The longer the bill hangs out without a vote, the chances of failure increase exponentially.

  33. Donkey Kong says:

    UGA Wins 2006,

    You said: “Well Bull, explain to us why we should trust the US government to get it right this time.”

    Well why don’t we all just go home and forget all of this. The government failed in the past so lets just forget reform altogether! Yeah, the feds have done a terrible job with enforcement. But I think this reform bill will bring immigration rules closer to the front of the public mind. I think it will make it easier for the feds to enforce the rules because of the wide-ranging bipartisan nature of the bill. Immigration enforcement has become portrayed as a Republican thing. If this bill passes, as I hope it does, it makes immigration enforcement a nonpartisan issue, and helps take some partisan fury out of the air.

  34. Bull Moose says:

    Thank you Donkey Kong.

    Let me tell you guys something, I supported Senator Isakson long before I knew who John McCain was.

    This bill isn’t perfect but it’s a hell of a lot better than the status quo.

    It’s just crazy talk to think I only support this immigration proposal because of my support of McCain.

  35. Donkey Kong says:

    Yeah it is. I know Fred and Newt sharply criticize this bill. I was expecting more of Newt, that he would understand the necessity and practicality of the bill. I supported Herman Cain in Isakson’s race, but I don’t think we could have asked for a better Senator than Isakson. He has done an incredible job in the Senate. Now, I want Cain to beat that traitor Linder and jump in Congress.

  36. Know Nothing says:

    Just so you know it alls know, they are not voting on the legislation today, they are voting on a motion to proceed to consideration of the measure.

  37. BrianDart says:

    Fred’s comments on the bill are common sense. Some people want a bill just to have a bill. Why not write a bill that will actually achive our desired goal.

    Fred has said, “We’ve tried the “comprehensive” route before to solve the illegal immigration problem with a bit more care and deliberation, and the results haven’t been good. ”

    We also need to write a bill that puts pressure on Mexico. The complain about our border policy, but their southern border is much more strict. “What does it say about the leadership of a country when that country’s economy and politics are dependent upon the exportation of its own citizens? – Fred Thompson.

    Fred seems to understand.

  38. Doug Deal says:

    As with all things, demand drives the problem. Whether it be drugs, alcohol during prohibition, or illegal workers now.

    To truly end illegal immigration one need to look no further than the IRS who could start enforcing existing tax laws. A few felony convictions and multi-year prison terms for tax fraud/evasion and I bet the market for illegal workers would dry up immediately.

    Without jobs, they would stop coming.

  39. Know Nothing,

    What other laws are not being enforced? And, of those, which ones have the devastating impact on both the nation’s social programs and the GOP that this problem does?

    And I’ve got three college degrees. I’m not competing against illegals. However, my family comes from a blue collar background and I actually care about those who do have to compete (unfairly) with illegals. They’re people, too, even if they aren’t big political muckitymucks.

    Is it the principle of the thing? Abso-friggin-lutely. And it’s the fact that it will bankrupt our country. And it’s the fact that we CAN’T trust the federal government on enforcement until they actually prove they’ll do it. And it’s the fact that this will be the death of the GOP. And it’s the fact of how this bill was birthed. And it’s the fact that this bill was, in part, crafted by La Raza and other special interest groups. And it’s the fact that our degenerate leaders are so sold out to big business and special interests that they would do whatever those interests want, even if it means cutting the throat of the average American. And it’s the fact that a trip to the emergency room takes 8 or 9 hours because the place is absolutely overrun by illegals. And it’s the fact that the illegals are getting “de facto” free health care while the cost of healthcare is being passed onto those who can pay. And it’s the fact that the government is using Medicaid to pay for illegals to have children here. And it’s the fact that our borders are an open invitation to terrorist groups wanting to sneak people and weapons into this country. And it’s the fact that we are consistently seeing the death of Americans caused by illegal aliens via auto accidents, murders, or other means. And it’s the fact that…

    And so on and so on.

    I stand on a lot more than principle on this issue. And so should you.

  40. Doug Deal,

    Good point. These screams of needing labor are exceedingly deceptive. Sure, some labor is needed. However, businesses want an overwhelming excess of labor — way beyond what they need. Then, those here can bid down the wages even further and further for the jobs that are being filled.

    And the burden of the illegals (or even immigrants if you legalize them) falls not on the company, but on the taxpayer (schools, health care, etc.). Why shouldn’t businesses want a barrel full of folks to choose from? And they are the ones bribing the losers in Washington to do their bidding.

  41. Donkey Kong says:

    rightonpeachtree,

    Your post smacks with bald declarations (i.e. The bill will be the end of the GOP, etc. The Grand Master Reagan himself gave amnesty to illegals–the party survived then, and it’ll survive now)

    I don’t think you get it–the Democrats are in control. We had our chance, and we didn’t do a thing. I really think this is our last chance to have a say in immigration policy for a while. If we deny the passage of the bill, and Dems win in ’08, their immigration reform will be much, much worse, and we’ll all be kicking ourselves for not adopting this bill.

    I don’t like it, and I don’t think its fair to immigrants from other parts of the world. But I think its a step in the right direction, and at some point we need to be realists and understand our current political situation.

  42. Know Nothing says:

    You bring up a legitimate point about the emergency room visits, but once illegal immigrants are able to have social security numbers, chances are they will pay for health insurance through their employers which they would then be able to do legally.

    Yes, illegal immigrants are getting free health care right now, but so are poor American citizens. What’s the difference? Illegals probably pay far more taxes than the poor do. So when we send the illegals back to their home countries for using our services and bankrupting our country, shouldn’t we send the poor back to whatever country they originally came form too?

    One can be principled or one can be pragmatic. I’d rather be pragmatic to the situation and solve some major problems rather than being principled and cutting off my nose despite my face.

  43. GOPeach says:

    Jason, Jason, Jason…

    Thank you very much for inviting me to join the YOUNG Republicans. I am honored and greatly humbled. I look good for 50+ but I am not YOUNG and you would not listen to anything I have to say. If you insulted me in public like you do on this blog, I would have to turn you over my knee and spank your fanny.

  44. Doug Deal says:

    KN,

    How do illegals “pay far more taxes than the poor do”? If they use a fake social security number, all they have to do is put in “exempt” or 99 dependents in their W-4, assuming they have a fake one. Then, no taxes are paid, except for SSI.

    Or, they work for cash under the table, and then not even that is paid.

    If they were not getting away with something, they would not be here illegaly, but would use legal means.

  45. Jeff Emanuel says:

    Know Nothing, what “know it all” said it was being voted on today? The stated goal was cloture today — to limit to 30 hours debate — and then a final vote by the end of the week. Whether that will happen or not is up for debate (literally); Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) is saying that it will take two to three weeks to nail it all down.

  46. Know Nothing says:

    Doug,

    At the very least illegals will pay payroll taxes, but it has been my experience (not some study done by any think tank or interest group) that illegals do not declare 99 dependents on their W-4s.

    I said they pay more taxes than the poor due to the earned income tax credit.

    Jeff, Holly mentioned she was “mildly freaked out” that the Senate was voting on the bill today.

    And just as an aside, Sen. Sessions is on the floor of the Senate right now praising Isakson for his work and comittment to securing the border.

  47. DK,

    Please explain to me how the importation/legalization of these folks wouldn’t become the end of the GOP. In the last election, 44% of Hispanics voted for Bush — and that was considered to be a hearty achievement by the GOP. And the % voting for Dems is even higher for those of Mexican/Central American ancestry. And why shouldn’t they vote for the Dems? The Dems (historically, at least) support big government more than the Republicans. They’ll pay a pittance in taxes and get an increasing number of government services. And it’ll be supported by your tax dollars and mine.

    Regarding Reagan’s amnesty, he later admitted it was a huge mistake. Also, they only thought there were 1 million here at the time. They granted amnesty and almost 3 million signed up. Now the estimated number is 12-20 million. How many will show up this time? Add in chain migration (which is NOT stopped by this) and high birthrates and our population will explode in the next 50 years with most of them being lower-paid workers wanting and getting big government. Surely you can see the difference between 1986 and 2007.

    I know what you’re saying about the Dems, but they also realize that this is a mine field. That’s why Pelosi is demanding 70 Republican votes in the House just to pass a bill over there. She’s looking for political cover because she doesn’t want the Dems to be holding the bag when this blows up. And it will. Even at sites like Daily Kos and Huffington Post, they often get defensive and angry when one of the open borders folks posts about the illegal immigration problem and denigrates those who oppose amnesty.

    The tide is turning on this. You have to look no further than cities like Farmer’s Branch and Hazleton and states like Georgia and Colorado to see that. I’m not a fan of kicking things down the road, but I think that is the best thing to do in this case. Let’s put it on the list of issues for ’08 and let the debate really be fleshed out.

  48. Know Nothing,

    You said:
    “Yes, illegal immigrants are getting free health care right now, but so are poor American citizens. What’s the difference?”

    You’re exactly right. Illegals get free health care now. If you legalize with the magic amnesty wand, they’ll be poor legals and they will still get free health care. Who pays for the “free” health care? You and me (or else the hospital goes out of business). Do you really think that employers will start offering to pay for their health care? Of course not. That’ll offset the employers’ savings realized through the lower wages they’re paying. And why would illegal (or “new” legals if they’re amnestized) pay for their own health care plans? It’s free now. It can just as easily be free after legalization if they go to the emergency room whenever they get the sniffles.

    The problem is that you’re dramatically increasing the percentage of people in the country who are poor. In economic terms, you’re increasing the percentage of people in the country who are a net (negative) drain on the country’s resources as opposed to being net (positive) contributors.

    That is a formula for disaster.

  49. IndyInjun says:

    KN wrote..”That is a formula for disaster.”

    Normally I would agree, because we are talking about half a $trillion in cost just in the first 10 years.

    However, the accumulated debt and the liability for federal government programs now stands around $125,000 per capita so what’s another $10,000 or $15,000?

    One might conclude that this means national bankruptcy, but take heart! The Fed has the capability to inflate our way, just like Zimbabwe did!

    The illegals and the fair??????taxers will be in nirvana.

  50. JRM2016 says:

    This is long, but interesting. Came over e-mail from Isakson’s office about an hour ago:

    Key Questions/Answers about the Border Security and Immigration Reform Proposal

    Why did Senate conservatives have to negotiate with Ted Kennedy, the Democrats and the White House on any immigration proposal?

    · The Democrats control both the House and Senate and have the votes to pass last year’s Kennedy bill or something worse that will grant amnesty and will not secure our borders.

    · In the legislative process, no one gets 100 percent of what they want. This legislation represents the best opportunity that we have to secure our borders and address this problem.

    · Some say we can not trust this White House or the Democrats to actually enforce the new bill. That will be true of any legislation, and that is why the Isakson border-security-first triggers are so important.

    · We also have to consider what kind of bill we might get with a Democratic President (no border security, blanket amnesty, no enforcement and rights to all welfare benefits).

    Will this proposal secure our borders and does it include the Isakson border-security-first trigger? Yes.

    This proposal would result in our borders being secure for the first time in our history.
    This proposal contains the Isakson border-security-first trigger exactly as Senator Johnny Isakson of Georgia drafted it. It says that no temporary worker program can begin until the Secretary of Homeland Security certifies to the President and to the Congress that specific key border security measures are funded, in place and operational.
    The border security measures that must be funded, in place and operational are:
    Manpower – A total of 18,000 full-time Border Patrol Agents.
    Detention beds – Detention facilities with a total capacity of 27,500 detention beds to end the practice of “catch and release.”
    Barriers – Additional barriers such as 370 miles of fences and 70 underground sensor systems along the entire U.S.-Mexico border.
    Unmanned Aerial Vehicles — A squadron of at least four unmanned aerial vehicles with high-tech sensors and satellite communication to allow coverage on the border by an unmanned vehicle 24 hours a day.
    Biometrically secure ID – A biometrically secure identification card program so employers can instantly verify whether an immigrant is legal or illegal.
    Does this proposal offer a new, special pathway for illegal immigrants to obtain U.S. citizenship or permanent residency? No.

    There is no new automatic pathway to citizenship, nor is there a new automatic path to establish permanent residency with a green card.
    Illegals must leave the country and must apply for a green card through a U.S. Embassy or Consulate outside the United States , just like everyone else, and they are placed at the back of the line. Everyone who has been waiting patiently on line will be ahead of them.

    Does this proposal give amnesty to those who are here illegally? No.

    According to Black’s Law Dictionary, amnesty is the blanket pardon of an offense without penalty. This proposal is not amnesty because illegal workers must complete the following steps in order to obtain a probationary Z visa granting temporary, probationary legal status:
    Come forward within 18 months of the bill’s enactment
    Plead guilty to breaking the law and be placed on probation
    Pay an extensive fine and processing fee
    Undergo criminal background checks
    Prove they are employed
    Become proficient in English
    Workers approved for Z visas will be given a temporary probationary legal status, but they will be barred from the full privileges of citizens or Legal Permanent Residents, such as welfare benefits, Social Security benefits, and the ability to sponsor relatives abroad as immigrants.
    Workers who obtain Z visas must leave the country when they stop working.

    What if someone here illegally does not come forward?

    · Individuals who are here illegally have 18 months to come forward.

    · If they do not come forward, they will be deported and permanently banned from the United States when they are caught.

    · If they try to get a job, employers will ask for their biometrically secure identification cards, which they won’t have.

    · If an employer hires an individual without a biometrically secure identification card, the employer will face extensive fines for each illegal immigrant that is employed.

    Does this proposal allow illegal immigrants to immediately apply for a green card? No.

    Under this proposal, it will take most Z visa workers at least a decade to be eligible for a green card.
    After becoming eligible, Z visa workers must wait in line behind those who applied lawfully, pay penalties, fees, and fines, complete accelerated English requirements, leave the United States and file their application in their home country, and demonstrate merit based on the skills and attributes they will bring to the United States.

    Does this proposal end “chain-migration”? Yes.

    The immigration system would be reformed to better balance the importance of family connections with the economic needs of our country by replacing the current system, where nearly two-thirds of green cards are awarded to relatives of U.S. citizens, with a system in which future family immigration will focus on the nuclear family and parents.
    A new Parents Visitor visa is created to ensure that parents are allowed to visit their children in the United States regularly and for extended periods of time.
    The Diversity Lottery Program, which grants 50,000 green cards per year through random chance, is ended.
    These rebalanced green cards are used to clear the Family Backlog in eight years and then applied to the new Merit System for future immigration once the backlog is cleared.

    Does the proposal create a new merit based system to select immigrants based upon what they contribute to the United States ? Yes.

    The Proposal establishes a new merit-based system to select future immigrants based on the skills and attributes they will bring to the United States . A merit system is used by many other countries.
    Under the merit system, future immigrants applying to enter the United States will be assigned points for skills, education, employment background and other attributes that further our national interest. These skills include:
    Ability to speak English.
    Level of schooling, including added points for training in science, math, and technology.
    Job offer in a high-demand field.
    Work experience in the United States .
    Employer endorsement.
    Family ties to the United States .

    Will Z visa workers be allowed to collect Social Security benefits?

    Z visa workers will pay into the Social Security system, as will their employers. Z visa workers may collect ONLY the share they individually put into the system and ONLY when they leave the United States . Z visa workers are barred from collecting the share of Social Security that employers put into the system on their behalf.

    Won’t illegal immigrants simply come out of the shadows and on to the welfare rolls? No.

    Z visa workers are not entitled to welfare, Food Stamps, SSI, non-emergency Medicaid, or other programs and privileges enjoyed by U.S. citizens and some Legal Permanent Residents.
    In order to apply for and maintain Z visa status, workers must remain employed. If they are no longer working, they must leave the United States immediately.

    Will Z visa workers be required to learn English and Civics? Yes.

    Probationary Z visa applicants must demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of the fundamentals of the history and of the principles and form of government of the United States , as well as be able to read, write, speak, and understand words in ordinary usage in the English language. They must prove this in a test prior to their first renewal of their probationary Z visa.
    The proposal also recognizes that English is the common language of the United States and that the Government of the United States shall preserve and enhance the role of English as the language of the United States of America.
    In addition, the DHS Office of Citizenship will be expanded to include coordinating assimilation efforts in its mission, and the Education Secretary will make an English instruction program freely available over the Internet.

    Does this proposal repeat the mistakes of the 1986 Immigration Reform and Control Act? No.

    · The 1986 Act failed because it provided amnesty for 3 million immigrants, but did not secure our borders and did not include a workable employer verification system.

    · This proposal addresses every one of the shortcomings from 1986:

    o No Amnesty: Illegal workers must acknowledge that they broke the law and pay a fine to be eligible for a Z visa.

    o Border Security: Border security benchmarks must be met before the Z visa and temporary worker programs go into effect. These triggers include: constructing 370 miles of fencing and 200 miles of vehicle barriers at the border and increasing the size of the Border Patrol to 18,000 agents.

    o Employer Verification System: An Employment Eligibility Verification System must be ready to process new hires before the Z visa and temporary worker programs go into effect.

    · The 1986 Act offered green cards after just 18 months, but under this proposal, green card applicants must meet so many responsibilities that it will take most candidates more than a decade to become eligible.

    How will the government be able to meet its promise to crack down on the hiring of illegal workers?

    Before the Z visa and temporary worker programs go into effect, an Employment Eligibility Verification System (EEVS) must be in place and ready to prevent unauthorized workers from obtaining jobs in the United States .
    Employers will be required to verify the work eligibility of all employees using the EEVS, and all workers will be required to present stronger and more readily verifiable identification documents. Tough new anti-fraud measures will be implemented to restrict fraud and identity theft.
    Employers who hire illegal workers will face stiff new criminal and civil penalties. For example, the maximum criminal penalty for a pattern or practice of hiring illegals will increase 25-fold, from $3,000 per alien to $75,000 per alien.

    Will the trigger period cause a rush to the border? No.

    To be eligible to apply for a Z visa, illegal immigrants must prove they were in the country prior to January 1, 2007. Those who cannot prove that will be deported immediately.
    Anyone caught crossing the border after the new law passes will be fingerprinted and permanently barred from entry to the U.S. , creating a strong disincentive to illegal immigration.

    Will government agencies be able to share information to pursue immigration violators? Yes.

    Under this proposal, there will be unprecedented information sharing between Federal, State, and local agencies to ensure that immigration laws are respected and enforced.
    The new Employment Eligibility Verification System, which employers will be required to use for all employees, will rely on unprecedented information sharing across Federal and State databases, including Social Security records, passport and visa records, and State driver’s licenses.
    For Z visa applicants, DHS has authority to share information with law enforcement about terrorist aliens, security risks, and criminal aliens, including aliens who lie on their applications and aliens who commit fraud.
    Under this proposal, DHS will receive Social Security Administration “no match” information on individuals and information on multiple uses of the same social security number by more than one individual.

    Was this deal negotiated behind closed doors?

    Recognizing the diversity of thought in the Senate on this issue, the Senate Republican and Democratic Leadership, as well as the White House, convened a number of working groups to hear different views and ideas on how best to address this problem.
    A number of Senators representing different views on this issue participated in formulating a proposal.
    The next step is an open debate of this proposal on the Senate floor.
    Numerous articles in the press have chronicled the process to develop legislation over the past several months.

    Will there be an opportunity to alter the language of this proposal, or is this the final version?

    During debate of this proposal on the Senate floor, there will be opportunity to offer amendments to change the language of the proposal.
    Senator Isakson looks forward to a floor debate in which all members of the Senate have a chance to offer amendments that they think would improve the bill.

    Should we support a bill that contains 90 percent of what conservatives want?

    With a Democratic-controlled Congress, it is a victory that most of the principles that conservatives have been fighting for are contained in this proposal. Conservatives should see this as the best chance to secure the border and reform our immigration system using conservative principles.
    With the political uncertainty of the 2008 presidential election, this is our best shot at securing the border and reforming our immigration system with conservative principles.
    Conservatives should not allow the perfect to be the enemy of the good.

    Is it true that illegal immigrants do not have to go home to be eligible for a Z visa?

    For now the bill does not force deportation of the estimated 12 to 20 million illegal immigrants who are here. While this is not ideal, the Democrats are not willing to force deportation, and they are in the majority.
    The proposal would force illegals to come forward within 18 months of the bill’s enactment and plead guilty to the crime of entering our country illegally, pay a fine and become proficient in English. If they fail to come forward, or fail to clear a background check, or fail to learn English, or fail to remain employed, or if they commit a second crime, they will be deported and permanently banned from the United States .
    Under the current proposal, workers who obtain Z visas would have to leave the country when they stopped working.
    However, this proposal is open to amendment in the Senate. When this proposal is debated on the Senate floor, Senator Isakson will work for and support any amendment that would require illegals to have to go home before they may obtain a Z visa.

    Are conservatives united in their opposition to this proposal? No.

    Conservatives are NOT united in opposing this proposal. Those who have really looked at what the proposal contains realize that it includes most of the principles conservatives have been fighting for.

    Is Senator Isakson a co-sponsor of this proposal? No.

    · Senator Isakson is not a co-sponsor of this immigration proposal.

    Will Senator Isakson vote in support of this immigration proposal?

    · Senator Isakson has said he will reserve judgment on supporting the final bill until the debate is complete.

    · He has said that at a minimum the bill must include his border-security-first triggers prohibiting implementation of a temporary, probationary work permit program until the Department of Homeland Security certifies to the President and to the Congress that the border security provisions in the immigration legislation are fully funded and operational.

    · He also has said the bill must prohibit any new pathway to U.S. citizenship and must require illegal immigrants to return home and get in the back of the line to apply for citizenship just as everyone must do now.

  51. IndyInjun says:

    From Isakson “The Democrats control both the House and Senate and have the votes to pass last year’s Kennedy bill or something worse that will grant amnesty and will not secure our borders”

    This is the same damnable line of excuse that the GOPers of the Georgia Delegation gave for voting for the the Medicare Drug bill, an unfunded $8 trillion liability and a abject repudiation of conservatism.

    Johnny is a total imposter as a conservative and Republicans like him are why your party is soon to be DEAD!

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