Lax Border Security Provisions Remain in Gang of Eight Bill

Despite committing to be open to improving their bill, Members of the Senate Gang of Eight on the Judiciary Committee rejected a multitude of amendments intended to strengthen the bill’s border security provisions.

At the Senate Judiciary Committee’s markup hearing Thursday to address the “border security” provisions (Title I) of the Gang of Eight amnesty bill, the two Republican Gang of Eight Members — Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Jeff Flake (R-AZ) — consistently voted with the Committee’s 10 Democrats to block changes to the bill’s core “border security” provisions. As a result, the Committee failed to pass any meaningful reforms to the Gang’s nearly 900-page bill.

The only positive amendment adopted by the Committee was an amendment by Ranking Member Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) to require the 90% apprehension rate goal outlined in the legislation to apply to all border sectors instead of just “high risk” sectors. (See Grassley Amdt. #1) As introduced, the Gang of Eight bill requires DHS to achieve a 90% apprehension rate at the U.S.-Mexico border, but only in “high risk” border sectors. The bill defines “high risk” as sectors in which border patrol agents catch 30,000 or more unlawful entrants per year. Sen. Grassley’s amendment struck all mention of “high-risk” sectors from the bill.

True immigration reformers offered numerous other amendments, but those failed. For example, Sen. Grassley offered an amendment that required that the border be under “effective control” for at least six months before DHS could process amnesty applications. Similarly, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) offered an amendment that: (1) required the border be secured before an amnesty could take place, (2) tripled the number of border patrol agents, (3) quadrupled the number of drones and cameras, (4) completed the border fence, and (5) implemented the biometric entry-exit system (US-VISIT). Sen. Lee introduced an amendment requiring Congress to certify the border as secured before any illegal aliens could be amnestied.

To view a listing of all of Thursday’s amendments, click here. The Senate Judiciary Committee continued amending the bill Tuesday at 10 a.m.

Comments

  1. Let’s Go Back to the Cold War Era

    Mutual destruction just about made an all out nuclear war highly improbable.

    It was worth the risk, IMO. At least we made things in theis country and our GDP was measured by manufacturing made in America….now its measuerd by i.e., Chinese debt to our government.

  2. avatar cyntha curran says:

    When Reagan did missile limit deals with the Soviet Union, he said trust, but verify. The amnesty proponents say trust us even though we never ever kept our word before. And are we willing to trust the same people who were targeting certain groups for IRS harassment? Even if it wasn’t directly the White House, it’s the example set when they order the law to be ignored in all facets of immigration enforcement. So trust you? Why?

    Reply Reagan passed the first anmesty, I get tired of the right giving him a passed. Meese says he regreated it but I wonder. Reagan got a lot of donations from the Central Valley in Ca, real estate and service and garment industry in La, Orange and San Diego which all favor the legalizaiton.

    • avatar Leland says:

      I’m not saying Reagan was right to pass the amnesty, I was just using his example of saying trust but verify. These people are saying now to trust them without restrictions, but we cannot.

  3. avatar Leland says:

    Again, this all reveals the schizophrenic arguments, nah let’s call it what it is, lying, about how the border is secure now. Napolitano and this administration proclaim to the skies that the border is already secure. So what’s the worry if it already IS? Yet when anyone says let’s just put that in writing, they say oh no, can’t do that.

    When Reagan did missile limit deals with the Soviet Union, he said trust, but verify. The amnesty proponents say trust us even though we never ever kept our word before. And are we willing to trust the same people who were targeting certain groups for IRS harassment? Even if it wasn’t directly the White House, it’s the example set when they order the law to be ignored in all facets of immigration enforcement. So trust you? Why?