Amnesty Hits a Roadblock
The push for amnesty for illegal immigrants is not going away anytime soon, but it has hit a wall of resistance from voters. It has generated so much opposition that it may now become the central issue for the 2008 presidential campaign.
Last week The New York Times went back to the old liberal well of polls in an attempt to convince readers that a majority of those that they polled were for the amnesty bill. To those berated, cursed and overwhelmed at congressional offices by those against the bill, this effort was laughably ineffective.
The level of intense opposition became very clear, even to those in Congress, who are usually immune from hearing the opinions of mere citizens. Supporting this bill, except in extreme leftist districts, was the equivalent of committing political suicide. The only people supporting the bill seem to be those on the far left, who think that 12-20 million more poor will all vote socialist, and those politicians bought and owned by Wall Street. That last segment obviously seems to include President George W. Bush.
There isn't any real question about passing the existing bill. That is dead on arrival. The anger it has evoked is still growing. There is no way to put a lid on this now. Voters, and they are a majority across the political spectrum, not just right wing zealots as the major media claims, are furious over the blatant hypocrisy and the callous refusal of elected officials to honor their oaths of office and enforce existing laws.
Voters do understand that refusing to treat criminals as criminals is weakening our national security and threatens our continued existence as a nation.
It is the casual dismissal of our rights as citizens that so dismays opponents of amnesty.
How dare they seek to diminish what citizenship means?
Why support an administration that doesn't respect citizens and seeks to embrace millions of invaders with pledges of support?
Actually the answer there is simple, President Bush, as bad as he is, is still head and shoulders better than the likes of Al Gore or John Kerry.
But Mr. Bush is loyal to his handlers in Wall Street and will fight to the last if they tell him to. I wish that wasn't true, but his stubbornness and continuing support for a horrible bill has clearly demonstrated where his loyalty lies; and it isn't to the voters that elected him, it's to Dad's old chums in Wall Street.
President Bush can go as often as he likes to Capitol Hill and try arm twisting; it's too late. Congress has seen their constituents boiling over with long held anger on this issue.
Legal immigrants have been saying: hey, we did it legally, so why are you now rewarding lawbreaking line-jumpers?
Is the Congressional Black Caucus ever going to consider the question of what happens when you add 12 to 20 million new poor to the pool of resources available for poor African Americans? Hint: increased demand doesn't create additional resources to meet it.
The worst part of the pro-amnesty argument is the one that claims that we need all these cheap workers to do the jobs no one else will do. Are they saying that it is okay to let these workers work off the books? No taxes, no workman's comp? No insurance?
As soon as you demand that they work legally, the whole cheap labor claim evaporates. It never made sense in the first place because, if the need is desperate enough, what happens? Pay increases until demand is met. I thought unions were supposed to make working conditions better for workers? Where are they on this issue? Are they also part of those talk radio "racist" right wing reactionaries fighting "progress"?
This bill is now not only dead, but it is also is radioactive. It is killing political careers and remaking the playing field for 2008.
The latest trial balloons are for Congress to now provide the money to pay for the enforcement measures passed last year. That may pass now, but it won't help a bit to move the amnesty bill forward. Why?
Well, duh, if Congress was really serious about enforcement first, why did it take them a year to actually provide funds? Do you really believe voters are so stupid that they will fall for it yet again? I don't.
The message coming from angry citizens is loud and clear: enforce our borders, and do it now! If the problem is so widespread and critical, then there is even a simple solution, declare a National Emergency and let local law enforcement start asking for legal status.
Stop banks from opening accounts and cashing checks for non-citizens without valid visas. Stop states from granting illegals social services and schooling and make them report illegals.
It isn't that hard, and it would work. Yet the federal government, instead of leading the way to do that, is stopping it from happening. That's why citizens are furious, and rightly so.
There is still a funny side to all this. Did you ever dream that you'd see Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid and Ted Kennedy all supporting the president on anything?
What other evidence do you need to convince you that George Bush is on the wrong side of this issue?
(EDITOR'S NOTE: Mr. Lulie wrote the above column prior to the release of the latest opinion poll by the Rasmussen organization. We provide a link to that report.)