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Amnesty Immigration Bill Still Alive

JBS | June 14, 2007
John F. McManus

The immigration bill currently bottled up in the Senate should not be considered completely dead. Steps are being taken by the President and his Democratic allies to overcome its amnesty label and gain more supporters.

Follow this link to the source article: " Bush Presses GOP on immigration bill "

At the June 12th Capitol Hill luncheon where GOP senators met with the President, Mr. Bush didn't twist any arms and he issued no threats. His low public approval rating has rendered him far less aggressive. He also knows that most members of his own party oppose the bill because they believe it amounts to amnesty for at least 12 million illegal immigrants.

In past years when the GOP held a majority in both houses of Congress, Mr. Bush could count on the support of almost all members of his party for his agenda. With this immigration bill, however, he has the backing of most of the Democrats and very few Republicans. The significance of this remarkable turn of events hasn't gone unnoticed. Nor has the distancing of themselves from the President by the GOP presidential debate participants.

The President's strategy at this point calls for encouraging members to add amendments to the bill. Whether this will result in persuading enough of them to cease opposing the measure is the big question. A minimum of 15 more votes is needed in the Senate to send the matter to the floor for consideration. Some senators being courted by the President face reelection in 2008 and most voters are opposed to what they rightly perceive to be a bill creating amnesty for millions.

One argument against passage of this measure is that it resembles the 1986 immigration measure that bestowed amnesty on more than two million illegal entrants. Supposed to end the immigration problem 21 years ago, it did nothing of the sort and instead, encouraged more to cross the border. The chief sponsor of that 1986 bill happened to be Senator Ted Kennedy (D-Mass.) who is the chief sponsor of the current bill. That President Bush would team up with the well-known Massachusetts liberal on such an important matter hasn't persuaded many Republicans to support the bill.

Should all the hurdles in the Senate be overcome and passage be gained, the measure would then go to the House where prospects for passage are considered even more slim than what it already faces in the Senate.

Let's not let this piece of legislation, or anything like it, in either part of Congress, see the light of day. Keep up the pressure on your representatives. Click here to let your representative know that an amnesty of any kind is unacceptable.


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