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The immigration divide

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The immigration divide
As debate on immigration heats up, all agree the system is broke

Sunday, April 2, 2006; Posted: 1:13 p.m. EDT (17:13 GMT) @

The numbers tell the story -- one of conflicted values and little resolution.

Of those surveyed in a Time poll last week, 82 percent said they believe the government is not doing enough to keep illegal immigrants out of the country, and a large majority (75 percent) would deny them government services such as health care and food stamps.

Half (51 percent) said children who are here illegally shouldn't be allowed to attend public schools. But only one in four would support making it a felony to be in the United States illegally, as the House voted to do when it approved the tough enforcement bill submitted by Wisconsin Republican F. James Sensenbrenner.

Rather than expel illegal immigrants from the country, more than three-quarters of those polled (78 percent) favored allowing citizenship for those who are already here, if they have a job, demonstrate proficiency in English and pay their taxes.

These figures help to shed light on how two chambers of Congress, both run by the same political party, should appear to be headed in such different directions on immigration. The Senate Judiciary has passed a measure far more open to immigration than the House version.

The kind of comprehensive immigration reform being discussed by the Senate carries the potential of transforming the politics of the country by making citizens -- and therefore voters -- of millions of mostly Hispanic residents in relatively short order.

Says Sen. John McCain, R-Arizona: "This legislation is a defining moment in the history of the United States of America." And possibly in the history of the Republican Party, which is why the politics of immigration is becoming so tricky for the GOP.

The business interests in the party base don't want to disrupt a steady supply of cheap labor for the agriculture, construction, hotel and restaurant industries, among others. That's why business lobbyists broke into applause and embraced in the Dirksen office building as the Senate Judiciary Committee voted 12-6 to send its bill to the Senate floor, with four of the committee's 10 Republicans joining all its Democrats in favor.

But those same business interests had lost badly in the House, where social conservatives argued that illegal immigration has begun an uncontrolled demographic and cultural transformation of the country, threatening its values.

The president has insisted that he wants reform that includes both enhanced border enforcement and provisions for guest workers. Last week, as President Bush met in Mexico with President Vicente Fox, he said, "We want them coming in in an orderly way." He added, "And if they want to become a citizen, they can get in line, but not the head of the line."

In the end, drafting a law acceptable to both the House and the Senate would mean finding common ground in three areas, each of which presents political challenges and real-world consequences of its own:
#1 - 02-04-2006, 21:13 uur
non-winner of the DV-2004, DV-2005, DV-2006, DV-2007 and DV-2008.

entering DV-2010 - 2014 because my wife thought USAFIS would be a good idea. (uhum)


We zullen een manier moeten vinden om die illegalen (en dat zijn NIET alleen Mexicanen en Zuid Amerikanen, maar ook bijvoorbeeld veel Ieren) uitzicht te geven op een verblijfsvergunning. Je kunt tenslotte niet zomaar eventjes 11 miljoen mensen het land uit zetten.

Wat alle illegalen eigenlijk zouden moeten doen: allemaal tegelijkertijd een dag staken. En dan zien wat er met de VS gebeurt!
#2 - 03-04-2006, 00:55 uur


Kom net uit Texas en daar is het ook het gesprek van de dag. Aan de ene kant hebben ze een hekel aan de Mexicanen aan de andere kant als ze een rotklus hebben wie huren ze dan in ...............  precies!  Maar gezien het feit dat wij zoveel moeite moeten doen om een visum te krijgen is het belachelijk als illegalen deze nu zo zouden krijgen, ook omdat er vanalles tussen zit, dus ook zware criminelen. Hans
#3 - 13-04-2006, 15:49 uur


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