The Senate Immigration Bill is Bad Legislation
Under the Senate agreement, illegal immigrants who have lived in the United States for five years or more, about seven million people, would eventually be granted citizenship if they remained employed, passed background checks, paid fines and back taxes, and enrolled in English classes.
Illegal immigrants who have lived here two to five years, about three million people, would have to leave the country briefly and receive a temporary work visa before returning, as a guest worker. Over time, they would be allowed to apply for permanent residency and ultimately citizenship.
As if people would actually sign up to go back where they came from to maybe come back?
Illegal immigrants who have been here less than two years, about one million people, would be required to leave the country altogether. They could apply for the guest worker program, but they would not be guaranteed acceptance in it.
The legislation would also require employers to use a new employment verification system that would distinguish between legal and illegal workers. In addition, it would impose stiff fines for violations by employers, create legal-immigrant documents resistant to counterfeiting, increase the number of Border Patrol agents and mandate other enforcement measures.
Critics of the bill did gain some notable victories. They won passage on amendments that call for 370 miles of fencing along the border with Mexico, designate English as the national language and reduce the number of foreign guest workers to be admitted annually to 200,000 a year from 320,000.
Nor have they addressed the IMMEDIATE eligibility of illegals that become eligible for residency (that's 80% of currently illegal aliens) to the Earned Income Tax Credit which is estimated to cost $29 BILLION dollars over the first 10 years in CASH OUTLAYS -- not deferred tax revenues but real cash -- and expands exponentially in years to follow. There are also provisions to forgive or permit the partial payment of past due taxes and the waiver of fees and fines.
I like that Senator Jeff Sessions says we should be encouraging the immigration of SKILLED and educated (at least a high school diploma) individuals that already speak English. He says studies show that those immigrants to America have a vested interest in succeeding here and who, in fact, contribute far more in tax revenues than they draw from system benefits... and conversely, those immigrants with less than a high school education draw 70% more from the system than they pay in. They estimate that 60-70% of all illegal immigrants currently living in the U.S. have less than a high school education and that less than 50% speak English well enough to pass a basic test.
The Senate is scheduled to vote on this proposed bill tomorrow (Thursday) so feel free to contact your elected representatives... ASAP.