Chicago Sun-Times
The scoop from Washington

Bush: Pushes again for ``comprehensive'' immigration bill. ``This isn't amnesty.''


The debate about amnesty as it relates to the immigration bill befores Congress rest upon the defination of the word.

Today, President Bush once again said he was against amnesty, defining it in the speech before the Chamber of Commerce as an automatic grant of citizenship.

What's on the table in the Senate bill is a path to citizenship, meaning that if a number of requirements are met, the illegal immigrant can remain in the U.S. legally. Those who define amnesty as the granting of any break from the current law, argue the Senate bill--which follow what Bush is proposing--is a form of amnesty.

Comments from the President and Homeland Security Chief Michael Chertoff

SEC. CHERTOFF: The responsibility of the Department of Homeland Security is to protect our homeland and keep our citizens safe from harm. And those are top priorities for President Bush.

The president has put forward a comprehensive vision for immigration reform that will secure our borders, strengthen interior enforcement and create a temporary worker program to meet the growing demands of our global economy. And through bold new homeland security programs, including community-based efforts like Citizen Corps, he has helped to prepare our citizens and our nation to confront our future challenges, while ensuring our freedom and our prosperity.

Ladies and gentlemen, it is my honor to introduce the president of the United States, George W. Bush.

PRESIDENT BUSH: Good job. Thanks so much. Thank you.

Thank you all. Please be seated. Thank you. Thank you all very much.Thank you all.

I told Michael to keep it short ---- and he did.

Thanks for having -- speaking about short, it's a short commute -- -- from where I work and live to this place. Thanks for having me, Tom. I'm honored to be back here at the chamber. I'm proud to be with some of America's finest entrepreneurs, job creators, risk takers.

I'm also proud to be with leaders from the National Citizen Corps. I thank you all for joining us today. I thank you for representing the true strength of America, which are those who are willing to volunteer in our communities to make the country a better place.

We got people from the Citizen Corps from all different backgrounds, from business associations to government agencies, to community groups, to schools, to nonprofits, to advocates for the disabled, and emergency responders.

Citizen Corps is making a significant difference in our country. When the hurricanes hit our Gulf Coast last year, members of the Citizen Corps played a critical role in the relief efforts.

I want to thank you for answering the call to service. Congress needs to provide the Citizen Corps with the funding you need to keep our communities safe and prepared for emergencies.

Today I want to talk about immigration, talk about the need for this country to have a comprehensive immigration reform. I'm going to spend a little time on making sure that workforce enforcement is effective and an integral part of making sure we have a comprehensive immigration reform.

Before I do, I want to thank the Chamber very much for your strong advocacy of comprehensive immigration reform. I want to thank you and I want to thank your members for being an articulate, rational voice in the immigration debate.

I want to thank Chertoff for his service to our country -- excuse me -- Secretary Chertoff. (Laughter.) Sometimes, you know, if you're from West Texas you get a little familiar. (Laughter.) Still adjusting to the protocols here in Washington. (Laughter.) Of course he knew who I was talking about.

I want to thank Ralph Basham, the commissioner of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection. Thank you for being here, Ralph. Thanks for your service. Ralph ran the Secret Service so ably, did such a fine job, I asked him to serve in this capacity, and he'll do a fine job there.

I want to thank David Aguilar. He's the chief of the U.S. Border Patrol. David, it's good to see you. Dave and I recently went down to the border and we took a good look at this long border. Gave me a chance to see firsthand what's taking place down there. It also gave me a chance to thank the Border Patrol agents, men and women who are working every day to do our job. And I want to thank you for your leadership.

I thank Julie Myers, assistant secretary for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. I want to thank Tracy Henke, assistant secretary, Office of Grants and Training for DHS. She is the chair of the National Citizen Corps Council.

And again, thank you all for letting me come by.

One of the jobs of the government is to encourage entrepreneurship, and we've done so in this administration, and as a result, America's risk-takers are -- and business-owners, both small and large, are hiring people. If you want a job in America, you can find a job in America. This economy of ours is growing at 3.5 percent last year, 5.3 percent in the first quarter of this year. The national unemployment rate is 4.7 percent; 5.2 million new jobs have been created since August of 2003. Small businesses are flourishing, productivity is high, after-tax income is up, homeownership is at an all-time level.

This economy of the United States is strong, and we intend to keep it that way. (Applause.) And the U.S. Chamber has been a strong supporter in making sure that Congress has sensible policies to keep this economy strong.

And one of the most sensible things the United States Congress can do is to make the tax cuts we pass permanent. (Applause.) You'll hear talk in Washington that says, "Well, you got to raise taxes on people in order to balance the budget." That's not how Washington works. They're going to raise your taxes and they're going to figure out new ways to spend your money. The best way to balance this budget is to keep pro-growth economic policies in place and be fiscally wise about how we spend your money.

Pro-growth economic policies generate additional revenues for our Treasury. Last year our revenues exceeded expectations by about $100 billion. This July we're going to find out whether it happened again. I hope it does. I think it might, because we're growing this economy. When the economy grows, people pay taxes. And so the fundamental question is not whether or not we're going to have more revenues; the fundamental question is are we going to have rational spending in order to balance this budget.

I told the United States Congress to get a $92.2 billion supplemental to my desk. It's money needed to fund our troops. It's money needed to help the people down there who were affected by the hurricanes. It's money to do important other measures. But if they bust the 92.2, I'm going to veto it. It's important for Washington to have fiscal sanity in order to balance this budget. (Applause.)

The fundamental question facing this country is: Do we fear the future or do we intend to shape it? I intend to shape the future so America remains the economic leader in the world, which means we got to have a good legal policy.

I want to thank the Chamber for being on the leading edge of proposing and enabling me to sign meaningful tort reform. We don't need junk lawsuits. They're running good people out of business. We don't need junk lawsuits running good doctors out of practice. What this country needs is rational legal system that is fair and balanced. So I'm going to continue to work for tort reform in the halls of Congress.

We need a health care system that takes care of the elderly and the poor, but also recognizes that the best health care system is one in which the decisions are made by doctors and patients not by bureaucrats right here in Washington, D.C.

We need energy policy that's wise. You know, we got a problem in America: We're too dependent on oil from parts of the world where people may not necessarily like us. So I proposed an Advanced Energy Initiative, and I want to thank the Chamber for supporting me on helping this country diversify away from hydrocarbons.

Today, I want to talk about immigration because the Chamber of Commerce understands that in order for this country to be an economic leader, in order for this country to be a country that upholds our values, we've got to have an immigration system that is secure and orderly and fair.

For decades this country has not been in control of its borders; yet we have an obligation to the American people to secure our borders. That's a solemn obligation of the federal government. And as a result of not securing our borders, many who want to work in this economy have been able to sneak across. This is an issue I'm familiar with since I was the governor of Texas. You got to understand there are people in our neighborhood who are desperate to put food on the table for their families.

And if they can -- say, make, you know, $7 in America, versus 50 cents where they live, and they want to support their families, guess what? They're going to try to sneak across the border, and many have been able to do so. And that illegal immigration has put pressure on our schools and hospitals, it's strained state and local budgets, and in some instances bring crime to our neighborhood.

You know, we have got to remember that the vast majority of illegal immigrants are decent people; they're hard-working people. They're people who love their families, people of faith, and people who lead responsible lives. They're part of American life, and they are vital to our economy. And yet they're beyond the reach and protection of American law.

This nation is a nation of laws, and we're going to enforce our laws. That's what the American people expect. But we're also a nation of immigrants and we must uphold that tradition, which has strengthened this nation in so many ways. These aren't contradictory goals. America can be a lawful society and America can be a welcoming society at the same time.

Congress is moving forward on immigration reform. The House started this debate by passing a bill that focuses on border security and interior enforcement. Then the Senate had its debate and it passed a comprehensive bill that also includes a temporary worker program and a plan to resolve the status of illegal immigrants who are already in this country. And now the two versions must be worked out in a conference committee. The House and Senate bills will require effort and compromise on both sides. It's a difficult task, yet the difficulty of this task is no excuse for avoiding it. The American people expect us to meet our responsibility and deliver immigration reform that fixes the problems in the current system, that upholds our ideals, and provides a fair and practical way forward.

The United States Congress needs to pass a comprehensive bill, one that will accomplish five objectives.

First, a comprehensive reform bill must help us secure our borders. The border should be open to trade and lawful immigration, and shut to illegal immigrants as well as criminals, drug dealers and terrorists. Since I became president, we've increased funding for border security by 66 percent; we've expanded the Border Patrol from about 9,000 to 12,000 agents.

As I told the folks down there, David, in Yuma, I am proud of the Border Patrol and so should the American people. Do you realize that over the past five years, the men and women of the Border Patrol, working under incredibly difficult circumstances, have apprehended and sent home about 6 million people entering this country illegally. There are some people working hard down there on our behalf.

Despite the progress, despite the fact that they've turned back 6 million people in five years, we don't have full control of this border. And I'm determined to change that. I call on Congress to provide funding for dramatic improvements in manpower and technology on the border, and so by the end of 2008, we'll increase the number of Border Patrol agents by an additional 6,000. In other words, we will have doubled the size of the Border Patrol during my presidency.

That's not going to be enough to do our job of securing the border. That's what you got to understand. And so these Border Patrol agents need help. And the best way to help the Border Patrol is to construct high-tech fences in urban areas, urban corridors, to build patrol roads and barriers in rural areas. We're going to create a virtual fence that employs motion detectors and infrared cameras and unmanned aerial vehicles to detect and prevent illegal crossings.

What I'm telling you is that we're going to have a border that is smart and secure. And the best way to do that is add Border Patrol agents and then give them the most advanced technology so they can do their job.

Training thousands of new Border Patrol agents and deploying the most advanced technology is going to take time.

Yet the need to secure this border is urgent, and so I'm acting. This month National Guard units will deploy to the border to set up headquarters that will help coordinate Guard operations that will support the Border Patrol. In other words, we'll be training 6,000 additional agents, but in the meantime, I'm going to send 6,000 National Guard down there.

These forces are the first of 6,000 members. They're going to assist the Border Patrol. They're going to operate surveillance systems and analyze intelligence and install fences and vehicle barriers and build patrol roads and provide training. In other words, they're going to be a complement to the Border Patrol.

The Guard units will not be involved in direct law enforcement activities. That's the job of the Border Patrol.

The United States is not going to militarize our border. What we're going to do is support those who we hire to do the job of enforcing the border.

As new Border Patrol agents and technologies come on line, the Guard forces are going to be reduced. The federal government's working to conclude formal agreements with California and Arizona and New Mexico and Texas that will define the roles and responsibilities of National Guard units deploying to the southern border. We're going to work closely with the governors of those states to secure this border -- also in touch with the chief of the National Guard Bureau, General Blum, to make sure that we get those 6,000 Guard down there to help the Border Patrol do their job.

I -- I also recognize the role of local and state enforcement authorities to help David and his people do the job, and so we'll increase federal funding for state and local authorities assisting our Border Patrol on targeted enforcement missions. As well, we're going to give specialized training to certain state and local folks, so they can complement the Border Patrol.

One of the problems we have down there is, we've got people working hard to find people, and in some instances, they apprehend somebody, and they head right into our society. That's frustrating for the Border Patrol agents. You got people working long, long hours down there, and they catch somebody sneaking into our country, and they say, "Hey, go here to this legal proceeding, and since the courts are full, just check back with us in 45 days." The problem is, a lot of people who want to put food on their table or want to do other things don't check back. That's a program that needs to end.

See, most of the people we catch at the border trying to enter illegally are Mexicans, and 85 percent of them are sent right back home within 24 hours. But the real problem we've had is when we catch illegal immigrants from other countries trying to come in -- come in. It's easy to send people back into Mexico. It's hard to send somebody to a country, you know, south of Mexico, for example.

One of the problems we've had is we didn't have enough detention space. So we got the Border Patrol agents working hard, they catch somebody from a country other than Mexico coming into our country, and there's no place to put them. And so -- part of our strategy is to end "catch and release" by expanding the number of beds and detention facilities along the border. We've added some and we're going to add more, we're going to add enough to be able to end "catch and release."

We've also expedited the legal process to cut the average deportation time. I've been in touch, as has my administration, with foreign governments that -- where we tell them, you got to take your citizens back. When we catch one of your citizens coming in, you have an obligation to take that person back into your society.

We've ended "catch and release" for illegal immigrants from the key Central American countries. Now Congress needs to provide additional funding and legal authority so we can end "catch and release" at the Southern border once and for all. The strategy is this: We're going to enforce our border. When we catch you, we're going to send you home. So that the message is very clear, and that is: You're going to be sent home, if we catch you illegally, which means don't try to come in in the first place illegally.

Second, in order to have a comprehensive reform bill, we have to have a temporary worker program. Part of securing this border is a temporary worker program. You see, there are people who will do anything to come into this country to work. That's what you got to understand. People are motivated by a desire in many cases, in most cases, to support -- I used to tell -- support their family. I used to tell people in Texas: Family values do not stop at the Rio Grande. And so therefore, it shouldn't surprise you when people hike across the hot desert and risking their lives to come and work, or are willing to get stuffed in the back of an 18-wheeler to come and do a job others won't do here in America.

The fact that people are willing to take those risks puts enormous pressure on our border, so much pressure that walls and patrols aren't going to stop it. In other words, you've got people saying, "I'll do anything to come and work, just give me a chance." And we can put up -- you know, we can have a lot of patrols and a lot of walls, and it's not going to stop that flow; it will put a dent in it. But if the job is to secure this border, it seems like to me that we got to stop the number of people who are trying to sneak across in the first place. And the best way to do that is to make a temporary worker program a part of immigration reform -- a program would create a legal path for foreign workers to enter this country in an orderly way for a limited period of time.

It'll match willing foreign workers with willing American employers for jobs Americans are not doing. Every worker who applies for the program would be required to pass a criminal background check. Temporary workers must return to their homes at the conclusion of their stay.

A temporary worker program would meet the legitimate needs of American employers, and it would give an honest immigrant a chance to contribute to our economy and at the same time provide for their families. A temporary worker program would reduce the appeal of human smugglers and make it less likely people would have to risk their lives to cross this border. A temporary worker program would ease the financial burden on state and local governments by replacing illegal workers with lawful taxpayers. And above all, the temporary worker program would add to the security of this country by making certain we know who's coming into this country and why they're here.

Third, a comprehensive reform bill must hold employers to account for the workers they hire. It is against the law to hire someone who is in this country illegally. Those are the laws of the United States of America, and they must be upheld. To ensure our laws are enforced, we've increased funding for immigration enforcement inside this country by 42 percent since I took office. Last year, I signed a bill that doubled federal resources for worksite enforcement.

We've launched law enforcement task forces in 11 major cities to dismantle criminal rings that are producing fake documents. Not only do we have a whole industry that's evolved to smuggle people in -- if you ever hear the word "coyote," these are these folks that are willing to use human life as a commodity to make money off of somebody -- and we've also got document forgers too, see. There's a whole industry that sprung up as a result of enforcement -- an immigration system that isn't working. And so we're out to bust those document forgers.

Most American businesses want to abide by the law. Many are unable to determine whether their workers are legal, however, because of this document fraud.

Today there's an industry that's making these IDs and fraudulent Social Security numbers. See, American employers who check these documents often discovered that the names of their workers don't match their Social Security numbers, so then we got people trying to verify, doing what they're expected to do under the law. But when this happens, the employer receives a "no match" letter from the Social Security Administration, yet under current law, the immigration enforcement agents at the Department of Homeland Security are not informed of these mismatches.

The system isn't working. You see, we need to address problems and ensure that agents can enforce the law. Business owners should not have to act as detectives to verify the legal status of their workers. So the federal government has a responsibility to ensure that businesses have a clear and reliable way to check work documents. We have that responsibility. If we expect people to adhere to the law that you're not supposed to hire somebody illegally, we have a responsibility here in Washington, D.C., to help you verify documents.

One thing we've done is we've launched what's called Basic Pilot. Basic Pilot is a voluntary online verification system that allows employers to confirm the eligibility of new hires by checking the information they provide against federal databases. If there's a mismatch, the applicant then has eight working days to contest the finding. By giving employers a quick and practical way to verify Social Security numbers, Basic Pilot gives employers confidence that their workers are legal, improves the accuracy of wage and tax reporting, and helps ensure that those who obey our laws are not undercut by illegal workers.

Basic Pilot just a while ago was only available in six states; now it's nationwide. As I told you, the program is optional. The truth of the matter is, most employers do not participate. Now, the House and the Senate immigration bills would require employers to use Basic Pilot. I think this is sensible. I think if we want to enforce our laws, people ought to be required to check to see whether or not names and numbers match.

Homeland security, by the way, in order for it to work needs more money to make sure that the program is up and running.

Now, the other thing we need to do besides good verification procedures is to develop a new identification card for every legal foreign worker. The card should be tamper-proof. It ought to use biometric technology, such as digital fingerprints. We've got the technology to do this. It makes sense to have somebody who's going to be here working on a temporary basis to have a card that will allow American employers to know that the foreign job applicant is who he or she says she is -- or he is. A tamper-proof card is going to be a vital tool to enforce the law. It has got to be a part of a comprehensive immigration reform package.

Improving enforcement for immigration laws also requires stiffening the penalties for those violating the laws. Today the fine for a business that fails to check an employee's ID can be as low as a hundred dollars. They might as well pay a speeding ticket. The penalty for knowingly hiring an illegal immigrant can be as low as $250, and can't exceed $2,000. These low penalties, frankly, provide little incentive for dishonest businesses to obey the law. And so we ought to increase the penalties. If we want to be smart about border -- worksite enforcement, we got to say to somebody who's breaking the law, there's going to be a cost, and it's more than $250. So the fines need to be larger.

The whole point and purpose of what I've just described to you is to assure the American people that we got a plan in place that says to the employers this is going to help you determine whether or not who you're hiring should be here in the first place. Secondly, it's going to help get rid of document fraud. I repeat: We don't want our employers becoming document experts.

That's not their -- you know, they're trying to get a job done.

And thirdly, we want to make sure that when we catch you, there's a consequence. You know, most American businesses are, you know, law abiding, and they really do want to uphold the law. They understand there's a responsibility to be an American, and that is to uphold the laws of the land. And yet, you got -- we got to recognize there are some unscrupulous folks who want to take advantage of low-cost labor.

Illegal workers can be paid less in than the market rate, see. And guess what? When you're illegal and you're worried about being detected, you can be exploited, and that's not the American way. We don't like people living in the shadows of our society. We're a nation of the rule of law, and we want people to be treated with respect. And so people who -- businesses that knowingly employ illegal workers undermine this law and undermine the spirit of America, and we're not going to tolerate it in this country.

Fourthly, a comprehensive reform bill has got to address the reality that millions of illegal immigrants are here already. Now these folks should not be given an automatic path to citizenship. That is called amnesty. I oppose amnesty. I oppose amnesty because it would be unfair to those people who are here lawfully, and I oppose amnesty because it would invite further waves of illegal immigrants.

One of the difficult tasks before the House and the Senate is deciding how American law will treat the illegal immigrants now in our country. Some members of Congress argue that no one who came to this country illegally should be allowed to continue living and working in our country and that any plan that allows them to stay equals amnesty no matter how many conditions we impose. Listen, I appreciate the members who are acting on deep -- deeply felt principles.

I understand that.

Yet I also believe that the approach they suggest is wrong and unrealistic. There's a rational middle ground between granting an automatic path to citizenship for every illegal immigrant and a program that requires every illegal immigrant to leave. The middle ground recognizes there are differences between an illegal immigrant who crossed the border recently and someone who's worked here for many years, who's got a home, a family and a clean record.

My position is clear. I believe that illegal immigrants who have roots in our country and who want to stay should have to pay a meaningful penalty for breaking the law, to pay their taxes, to learn English and to work in a job for a number of years. People who meet these conditions should be eventually permitted to apply for citizenship like other foreign workers, but approval would not be automatic. They would have to wait in line behind those who played by the rules and followed the law.

This isn't amnesty. It is a practical and reasonable way for those who have broken the law to pay their debt to society and demonstrate the -- the character that makes a good citizen.

Fifth, a comprehensive bill must honor the great American tradition of the melting pot, which has made us one nation out of many peoples.

You know, this debate's an interesting debate. It gets quite emotional, and sometimes in emotion -- in all the emotions, we forget we're a land of immigrants. Success of this country has depended and will depend upon helping newcomers assimilate into our society and help folks embrace our common identity as Americans.

Americans are bound together by our shared ideals, an appreciation of our history, respect for the flag we fly, and an ability to speak and write the English language.

As business owners and community leaders, you know that English is the key to unlocking the opportunity of America. See, English allows a newcomer to go from picking crops to opening a grocery store. English allows a newcomer -- from sweeping an office floor to running that office.

English allows someone to go from a low-paying job to a diploma, a career and homeownership. When immigrants assimilate and advance in our society, they realize their dreams. And as they do, they renew our spirit and they add to the unity of our country.

As the Chamber, you appreciate the great contributions immigrants have made to America's freedom and prosperity, and you know their importance for the future of this nation. And so you're helping this country reach consensus by conducting the debate on immigration in a reasoned and respectful tone, and I appreciate that a lot. I urge our fellow citizens to understand that harsh language, unnecessary politics, sends the wrong message about who we are as a nation. I appreciate the fact you're working for an immigration bill that is comprehensive. That makes a lot of sense. Because you know that all the elements of this problem must be addressed together or none of them will be solved at all.

Throughout our long history, America has prospered because we welcomed people who abided by our laws and worked hard and raised their families and trusted in the Almighty. I believe we must be guided by that history as we reform our immigration system. I trust in our country's genius for making us all Americans, one nation under God. And I'm confident that the United States Congress will do its duty and pass an immigration bill that secures our borders, strengthens our laws and upholds the promise of the United States of America.

May God bless you all.


I voted for President Bush. Tancrito (sp?) gets it, but he doesn't seem to. Anyone who believes that at the end of their "temporary" term of stay, they are going to leave, please stand up. It would appear that our President is willing to turn us over to Mexico.

I support the president!

It seems to me if we concentrate on one point of Immigration law, gleaned from the 1986 Act. We would have to look no further in securing our borders, with either Canada or Mexico. Implement the Employer sanctions law, to the necessary extreme of penalties. The act would give no leniency to any business that willfully employs any foreign national without a biometric work permit. First offense would be $5.000.00, for each person with a maximum of thirty days in jail, with no exceptions. The next would be a mandatory jail sentence of Six months, along with a $20.000.00 for each illegal employee. A third offence under the statute should carry a prison sentence of five years, including $100.000 dollar fine for each illegal individual. No person within the business community should be immune, including the CEO and the officers.

To support this enforcement statute, the majority of the funds should go to hire an army of Internal Immigration Business enforcement officers, whose sole job is to methodically check every company entity in a designated area. Just like many other countries, they would be first vetted for any criminal background, who then vigorously trained to understand the requirements and procedures of Immigration law.

This huge force of Inspectors could be hired from millions of senior citizens, who would be very capable of handling a status of this importance. Both on a permanent basis, and a legion of temporary United States Enforcement officers, would be well qualified to inspect company records for any discrepancies. In addition, if a slowly growing army of civil militia can unite to become “The minutemen��? organization, the Peoples government of this Nation will find volunteers to effect this enforcement in America.

Once trained to the full extent of their new powers, they should have full access to Social Security and restricted IRS databases. A keyboard password, would immediately inform the inspector of immigration violations. Of course safeguards would be involved, but the head immigration managers and courts could resolve any mistakes and errors.

Once this stellar enforcement act was seen to work, then the American people might commit themselves to allow a measured and orderly guest worker program. As I see it, we are supposed to be a nation of laws, but when the politicians are forced into a corner. They change the laws to suite themselves, same with the sitting Senators on May, 25 2006.

If the destructive power of Immigration enforcement at the workplace was set in concrete, then any employer would be very resourceful in checking hires. Currently there is absolutely nothing for even the most honest businessman, to check any fraudulent references.

A mandatory database that can be accessed through the basic PC, is all the employer needs. There should also be a security center where a company can contact, when he believes something is wrong with the potential employees credentials. This will bring an enforcement officer to the place of work, safeguarding his own personal freedom.

Once an employer knows the severe penalties, for hiring any foreign nationals without an authorized I.D , they have little choice but to return to their homeland.

The word “Attrition��? signifies that without the job, money or citizens benefits to keep themselves here they must leave!

Just a small token force of the U.S. Border Patrol, fencing in large populated areas and high tech sensing equipment would be enough. Without any chance of finding work, volumes of illegal aliens would leave. No work permit, no job!

hallo plzzz everybody who r here before jan 1 2006 that will be great because people here in country from last 1yr they have own house and bussines so plzzz fwd this to white house and senate thanks a lot

the people in question are not in any way, shape or form immigrants, they have illegally entered this country and have broken our most basic law. then, have the testicular fortitude to expect and in some cases demand citizenship merely on the fact that they are here.
our borders need to be sealed immediately. non-emergency services need to be denied to illegals. the ability to have children "naturalized" needs to be stopped. finally, MASS DEPORTATION needs to take place.

The Mexicans and Latinos have plenty of land. Let them go and develop their own instead of taking away our jobs our resources and our land and asking the American people to pay for the expansion of their race and their country out of our pockets. Cutting in line and minapulating our immigration system to expand their race and take over America is not an equal opportunity for other races and nationalities that want to come here and it does not match up with our equal opportunity employment laws. It is racist and bias Latino manipulation of our laws to take over by mob force.They knew it was against the law to sneak in here illegally and steal social security numbers to work and forge documents. If the can sneak in to steal from us and break the law then they can sneak back out.

Since the employers couldn't resist breaking the law, the Senate wants to give them amnesty too!

(CYA in case the Senator's nanny applies for a greencard?)

Buried in the more than 600 pages of legislation is a section titled "Employer Protections," which states: "Employers of aliens applying for adjustment of status under this section shall not be subject to civil and criminal tax liability relating directly to the employment of such alien."

Supporters of the legislation insist that such provisions do not amount to "amnesty."

"The word “Attrition��? signifies that without the job, money or citizens benefits to keep themselves here they must leave!"

So your solution to the illegal immigrant problem would be to "starve them out"
OK, Rhetorical question: Would you rather be unemployed, starving and broke in America, or unemployed, starving, and broke in Mexico? The answer is obvious. Which means your 'solution' would only serve to exercabate the problem, instead of solving it. Many seem to forget what kind of desperation brought these people here in the first place. What your 'solution' would most likely result is in a huge crime wave, as many resort to selling drugs, etc, just to feed themselves, and in addition, "open season" is declared on illegal immigrants or even people that "look like" illegal immigrants.
Its astonishing how people spout propaganda 'solutions' spoonfed to them by withought thought to the potential consequences. If left to their own devices, these yahoos would drive this country off a cliff.

I support the President as well!

I support President Bush on immigration. We are talking about human lives here. Please be more passionate. Laws are written for society that is made up of people. People should not be punished so harshly that would break the families of mostly decent people of 12 millions.

You may call it amnesty or call it something else. The end result is the same. People came here illegally, work illegally, which is the same as robbing the corner grocery. It takes money from honest folks ... by breaking the law. And the ones who employ them often underreport their income in order to pay them under the table. It's wrong and NO ... illegal's do not contribute to the economy, the rob from it. If people come here legally, fine. They obey the rules and do contribute. But not so with illegals. They not only should not be granted amnesty (or call it what you want), they should be caught, booked and deported, forever denied immigrant status. And if they come back, five years in prison. The same goes for those who employ them or allow them to drive their cars without a driver's license. They are thiefs and lawbreakers. There is no other RATIONAL way to view the matter.

They also commit a waaaaaay higher percentage of violent crimes in our major cities. That is a solid statistic.

No, no compromise. And what is more, local law enforcement needs to be able to arrest, detain, and either deport or prosecute.

And the bill for all of this? It should be sent ot the fifth largest economy in the world, the Mexican Government for given behind the scenes approval to this theft from the US citizens.

Send all of them back. Make it a felony to be here. Send them to Maricopa county tent citys. Make them feel at home that way.

I deeply support President Bush and Senate on immigration bill they have pasted recently. It is really unrealistic to deport people who have been living here for years and have families, children,Friends, jobs and etc. we have to be realistic and passionate about it. It is not an amnesty. under senate bill not everyone will be able to get legal status because of many requirements.
Mass Deportation is not the way out and it does not represent an American tradition

Youmay want to check out this site. Our representatives in congress are failing us when you look at the majority of Americans. Go to See the statistics on why people are concerned about the amount of Illegals coming into the country... Have a great weekend!

I support Pr.Bush and his agenda about immigration.New immigration reform will pass soon.God bless USA

Send all illegal immigrants home. Afterwards let all the house members and Lou Dobbs replace their jobs. I think that would be fascinating.


During his remarks on comprehensive Immigration Reform before the United States Chamber of Commerce on June 1, 2006, President Bush made the following remark:

The fundamental question facing this country is, do we fear the future, or do we intend to shape it. I intend to shape the future so America remains the economic leader in the world, which means we've got the have a good legal policy. I want to thank the Chamber for being on the leading edge opposing -- and enabling me to sign meaningful tort reform. We don't need junk lawsuits running good people out of business. We don't need junk lawsuits running good doctors out of practice. What this country needs is a rational legal system that is fair and balanced. So I'm going to continue to work for tort reform in the halls of Congress.

No one is in favor of junk lawsuits. As an attorney who has had the privilege of helping injured people and their families for over two decades, I know first hand that it makes absolutely no sense to bring junk or frivolous lawsuits. Frivolous lawsuits are worth $-0-. They do nothing but clog up the courts and waste precious time and resources. But the solution should not be a knee jerk reaction that produces unfair results to innocent victims of negligence.

The type of reform that President Bush refers to is to, among other things, place artificial limits on what an injured person can recover. Whether it’s a $100,000, 250,000 or even a $500,000 limit, any such limit arbitrarily sets a ceiling as to what can be recovered – regardless of the specific facts of extent of the damages. Frankly, those amounts are sometimes not enough:

· Hardly sufficient to compensate a 32 year old junior high school teacher who is rendered a quadriplegic due to a truck running a stop sign.
· Totally inadequate to compensate a family whose father was killed due to emergency room physicians failing to diagnose pericardial effusion that caused death due to a cardiac tamponade (pressure on the heart from an accumulation of fluid in the chest).
· Shamefully insufficient to compensate the family of a vibrant, playful 4 year old boy who went into a hospital to receive a simple revision in his tracheotomy only to come out in a persistent vegetative state due to no one responding to the alarm when his breathing tube came out.
· Woefully inadequate to compensate a nursing home resident for he pain and suffering when after her doctor prescribed a sitz bath for hemorrhoids and the nursing home staff thought that meant holding her over a pan of boiling water, she was dropped into the pan and suffered horrendous burns to her vaginal and anal areas, necessitating multiple surgeries.
· Hardly sufficient to compensate the family of a 5 year old boy who although he had be able to beat leukemia and the resulting graft versus host disease that followed bone marrow transplant from his younger brother, died from an intracerebral bleed that occurred due to the negligence a nurse and two residents who failed to appreciate the signs and symptoms of an infection that caused the boy to go into septic shock and develop acute respiratory distress syndrome.

Thankfully, all these cases were filed and resolved before any artificial limits were put into place. The monetary results were able to be determined based on the facts of each case, based on the testimony of physicians, nurses, specialists in various fields of medicine, and ordinary lay witnesses who saw what had occurred to the people and families involved. None of these cases could be described by anyone as “junk��? or frivolous lawsuits. Proponents of tort reform always argue that they are not trying to limit economic damages (medical bills and lost earnings), only the non-economic damages, i.e., pain and suffering, disability, and disfigurement. But the injured person does not keep money awarded for medical bills – that money is used to pay for medical care. And most of the people cited due to their ages have no lost earnings. But, it is precisely these people who would have been deprived justice had there been arbitrary limits enacted into law on their right to seek recovery for non-economic damages. Rather than allow the judicial branch – the courts – to address such grievances, President Bush wants to have the legislative branch decide future cases without knowing anything about them: without ever hearing any facts, without seeing any exhibits, and without hearing any witnesses. Contrary to Bush’s remarks, that would not be a fair system; that would be an arbitrary system that legal scholars have called unconstitutional.

When Research in Motion paid NTP, Inc. $612.5 million in settlement of the Blackberry litigation, no one voiced any opposition to that settlement. Although it will certainly adversely affect the cost of business for RIM, no one proposed any limits on such commercial litigation. And no one should. Although the result could have hurt existing Blackberry customers by limiting the functionality of their small, handheld devices, that was a dispute between two private parties that was ultimately settled, to paraphrase John Houseman’s line in the old Smith Barney commercials, the old fashioned way – based on the facts and evidence.

Why should a person who has been severely injured or a family who has been deprived of a loved one be entitled to any less?

Jeffrey E. Martin
Levin & Perconti
Chicago, IL

let stay illegal immigrant with a good background just doing the hardwrok for they're family.they came to looking for a good life they are not criminal. how i imagine if i was on their situation it broken my heart. god blessed them and for those people againts illegal immigrant or undocumented immigrant lets us open our mind with those good people (illegal or undocumented immigrants)they're human.GOD BLESS AMERICAN PEOPLE OPEN YOUR HEART.

I support the president in immigration reform !! He knows how to deal with this !
House plan is unrealistic , Jim Sensebrener and those folks up there are living in a world of dreams.

America is too crowded already. This is not the 1800's when we need people to become a great nation. We could use less people here not more. Bush should think about what's good for America, not the big corporate farmers.

Why is the government giving law breakers advantage over people who have waited many years to become citizens? It's time to get tough before we are overrun even more by foreign invaders. Also, it's time to end automatic citizenship for criminal invaders who have their "anchor babies" here.

excerpts from "Immigrants are our brothers and sisters -- tear down that wall!" in Revolution newspaper:

There's Nothing Worth Respecting About This Border

That’s why you cannot just look at the borders of the U.S. and simply say it is against the law and wrong to cross it. You have to ask how did that border get there? What interest does it serve? Who benefits from it? What program does it serve?

Let’s talk about what is real. Here it is: This country and its border were established on genocide of native people, slavery of Africans, and the theft of half of Mexico in the war of 1846. There were no borders when humans first crossed from Asia to what's now known as the Americas. The Spanish conquerors landed in the 16th century and drew their borders as part of subjugating and murdering the people for the wealth. And the British colonists on the east coast of what's now the U.S. drew their borders as they almost wiped out the people who lived there before the colonists arrived.

In the 1840s the U.S. launched an unprovoked war of aggression against Mexico (which had outlawed slavery, in contrast to the U.S. where the slave system was in full effect in the South). Behind the war was the drive for more territory by both the Southern slave owners and the Northern capitalists. What do you think the Alamo and its “heroes��? — Davy Crockett, Samuel Houston, Jim Bowie, and Daniel Boone — were about? Murder and thievery of Mexican land for the purpose of spreading slavery and capitalism to that part of the territory. Later, to consolidate this thievery they created the Texas Rangers. It’s just that simple.

After the war the U.S. forced Mexico to sign the Treaty of Guadalupe-Hidalgo. In return for stealing huge amounts of Mexico territory (now the U.S. Southwest), the U.S. government promised land, language, and other rights to Mexicans living in this area now occupied by the U.S. But the U.S. broke the treaty as quickly as they had signed it.

There is not a goddamn thing worth respecting about these U.S.-created borders or the laws that enforced them. That's why we say: Tear down that wall!

Read the rest of the piece here:

Anybody know why
Blagojevich wears long bangs? Is he hiding a scar on his forehead? Does he think hair in the face is sexy? Or is he just a dufus?

read the moronic arguments, people leave Mexico because they cant get opportunities so the come here! But according to this marxist we should let a corrupt Mexican government run the US. hmmmm typical wacko liberal weirdo.

In the 1840s the U.S. launched an unprovoked war of aggression against Mexico (which had outlawed slavery, in contrast to the U.S. where the slave system was in full effect in the South). Behind the war was the drive for more territory by both the Southern slave owners and the Northern capitalists. What do you think the Alamo and its “heroes��? — Davy Crockett, Samuel Houston, Jim Bowie, and Daniel Boone — were about? Murder and thievery of Mexican land for the purpose of spreading slavery and capitalism to that part of the territory. Later, to consolidate this thievery they created the Texas Rangers. It’s just that simple.

After the war the U.S. forced Mexico to sign the Treaty of Guadalupe-Hidalgo. In return for stealing huge amounts of Mexico territory (now the U.S. Southwest), the U.S. government promised land, language, and other rights to Mexicans living in this area now occupied by the U.S. But the U.S. broke the treaty as quickly as they had signed it.

There is not a goddamn thing worth respecting about these U.S.-created borders or the laws that enforced them. That's why we say: Tear down that wall!


It would be nice to see my husband able to get a job since he has been here for 3 yrs,and married to an american born and raised here. Its not fair to him nor me not to allow him to work just to exist here so he can be with me

Hi all! The immigration reform suggested by President Bush has its pros and cons (more cons in my opinion). However, i came here legally last year and as per law am not eligible for Social Security and therefore cannot work. I have abided by that (it is a painful ordeal having a Masters Degree and 5 years of banking experience) and am following all the rules and regulations. Now someone tell me; isn't this unfair? Shouldn't i be the first in line for a job? Should i turn illegal?

Leave a comment

Get the Sweet widget

More widgets


Lynn Sweet

Lynn Sweet is a columnist and the Washington Bureau Chief for the Chicago Sun-Times.

Stay in touch

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Lynn Sweet published on June 1, 2006 10:34 AM.

Sweet Column: The Hastert Doctrine was the previous entry in this blog.

Hastert: In Iraq today. Surprise trip. is the next entry in this blog.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.