The Daily Caller

The Daily Caller

Time for a reality check on immigration

Photo of James Carafano
James Carafano
Director, Heritage Foundation's Allison Center for Foreign Policy Studies

Apparently, not everyone on the left was listening to the Scott heard ’round the world. Topping the list is Markos Moulitsas of the Daily Kos. He wrote a commentary for The Hill declaring that “Immigration is Dems’ key.” Moulitas says the best way for the Democrats to regain momentum is to push through a massive amnesty bill. Apparently, he has not heard of Einstein’s definition of insanity—doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. Moulitsas’ advice could not be more wrongheaded—and here is why.

First, Moulitas is simply dead wrong to frame this as a Democrat-vs.-Republican issue. He labels Republican opposition to amnesty as “old-school xenophobia and racism, the right-wing anti-immigrant hysteria.” I guess he forgot that the last amnesty bill was authored by the Bush administration—and it is hard to get more right-wing than that. He is also dead wrong to assert that anti-immigrant attitudes are the bedrock of conservative thinking. They are not. It’s hard to get more conservative than the Heritage Foundation, and it has been a strong proponent of honest and sensible reforms. The truth is that immigration does not cut clean between Red and Blue states. Views vary—a lot.

Second, the notion that this is a winnable issue for the Congress is, pardon me, laughable. The fact is that in the House of Representatives, you could make a ham sandwich with the national emblem of the Republic if you wanted to. In the House, anything can be passed with 218 votes. The Democrats control 256. Yet the Speaker Nancy Pelosi has already said she won’t let the House touch immigration until the Senate passes a successful bill first. Meanwhile, the good Senator from New York who crafted the administration’s amnesty bill refused to even introduce it before the Christmas holiday break, out of fear Members would get pummeled by constituents back home. It hardly sounds like the Congressional leadership thinks it has a winning issue here.

Third, the bill is a really bad idea. An amnesty bill won’t solve the problem of illegal immigration. It will just make it worse. We know that for a fact. That is exactly what happened in 1986.

Don’t hold your breath waiting for the administration to make amnesty its flagship issue. In fact, what the administration is finding is that just like health care, Middle East peace, dealing with Iran, closing Gitmo, and combating “man-made disasters,” immigration reform has turned out to be a lot tougher than it looks.

James Carafano is Deputy Director of The Kathryn and Shelby Cullom Davis Institute for International Studies and Director of the Douglas and Sarah Allison Center for Foreign Policy Studies at The Heritage Foundation.

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  • brittanicus

    We all know the astronomical costs for the Federal government, either retreating from immigration enforcement or just a parody of working? All administrations have remained silent on the real expenditures and unrevealed–BILLIONS–to subsidize illegal alien families? To them its not their money that is being drained from their bank accounts–its just numbers that the IRS extracts from every citizen and legalized resident. The majority of the American workers, businesses owners, bloggers or any person with computer expertise acknowledge that E-Verify is not perfect. But–ANY–any new software eventually after numerous revisions and bug identification can become a winner. E-Verify the software wizard is no different and as its revised and new technology is applied, it does and will detect people unauthorized to work in the United States. Those individual job seekers who have an erroneous rejection, can immediately apply to a Social Security agency for the discrepancy to be resolved. Because of its success rate of over 96.9 percent, there are many in both the House and Senate, who have moved mountains to to undermine its use in determining who has a right to be employed. These are the same UN-American scoundrels who have used their influence in Washington, to drain funding for the whole SAVE ACT.

    Have the public ever noticed how great programs to enforce immigration laws have evaporated, even before they have had a chance to show their worth? Homeland Security Janet Napolitano chief, has allowed Senators like Harry Reid, Majority Speaker Nancy Pelosi to influence the dismantling of the Federal government training for local police detainment of foreign nationals or the sudden slow down of ICE raids on predatory businesses. Cutting back on these systems of immigration enforcement could just be a precursor for Sen. Gutierrez of Illinois push for Comprehensive Immigration Reform? The 1986 law has been ineffectual, as it was never truly enforced. It was absent of its ability to stop the inflow of illegal immigrants, because it was–NEVER MEANT TO WORK? The combined influence of pariah companies, unions, church groups, subversive entities as La Raza, US Chamber of Commerce, Council of Foreign Relations, United Nations and representatives in our own government have been in collusion to keep the illegal aliens coming.

    A new face has joined the growing list of lawmakers, who are–AGAINST–any revival of AMNESTY for the invaders. Rep. Miller says the best way to protect American workers is to pass his legislation, the Loophole Elimination and Verification Enforcement Act (H.R.994), which puts immigration enforcement first. Rep. Gary Miller (R-Ca) points out several key facts in the AMNESTY bill that would hurt unemployed Americans. First, Miller criticizes the offering of amnesty to the nation’s 12 million illegal aliens, saying that “granting amnesty to those that have recklessly disregarded our nation’s immigration laws is an affront to American citizens and legal residents.” (Rep. Miller adhesive’s to the tired illegal immigrant policy of the 12 million number. In truth there is somewhere between 20 to 30 million as Bear Stearns stated.) Find more answers for your immigration questions at NUMBERSUSA dot com and JUDICIALWATCH dot org.

    Use your own powerful vote to demand NO MORE AMNESTIES, MAKE E-VERIFY PERMANENT , FULLY FUND 287 (G) FOR LOCAL POLICE AND RESUME EXPANDED ICE RAIDS. Call the Capitol Switchboard at 202-224-3121 and asked for your Senator or Congressman. In addition bombard your State Representatives to enforce state laws.

  • cl696

    Secure the boarders…ramp up defense…improve the education system (not by adding money)…or talk about health care and Tiger it is all the same…

  • apberusdisvet

    We don’t have enough problems already? Within 10 years, Amnesty will add 50 million (including chain migration) to the public entitlement trough. Will there be anyone left to pay for this largesse?