Debra Saunders: Cynical Washington Games Behind Amnesty

“The Senate is so out of touch that some leaders think the way to pass a path-to-citizenship bill for illegal immigrants is to budget $40 billion for extra immigration enforcement over the next 10 years. This is the type of cynical ploy that makes everyone hate Washington,” says columnist Debra J. Saunders.

“The Senate wants to reward people who have broken immigration law — and then tell voters it’s OK because it wants to spend billions more to enforce the laws it will have overridden. The Heritage Foundation panned the Gang of Eight’s measure — with amendments, it runs more than 1,100 pages — as ‘a massive, sweeping, complicated bill that works at cross-purposes to its stated goals.'”

Dairy Farmers Lobby for Guest Worker System

“Brian Gerrits, who oversees two dairies that own more than 5,000 cows, is one of Wisconsin’s many dairy farmers backing the immigration overhaul heading to the U.S. House. Giving illegal immigrants the chance to become citizens would eliminate anxiety for farmers and workers and ‘take that monkey off our backs, and theirs,’ Mr. Gerrits said, while taking a break from mixing pancake batter at a Waushara County dairy breakfast attended by U.S. Rep. Tom Petri (R., Wis.),” the Wall Street Journal reports.

“A comprehensive rewrite of U.S. immigration laws passed the Senate last week. In Wisconsin, dairy farmers, one of the state’s biggest business groups, are embracing a stance not shared by some Republican lawmakers and their skeptical constituents, providing a preview of the debate to come.”

“The farmers represent a powerful force pushing for an immigration overhaul. The industry’s reliance on immigrant labor has deepened as milk producers have turned to nearly 24-hour milking cycles to boost productivity. Immigrant workers make up about 40% of hired labor on Wisconsin’s dairy farms, according to a 2009 estimate from the University of Wisconsin at Madison.”

Rep. Filemon Vela Leaves Congressional Hispanic Caucus Over Border Surge

“Rep. Filemon Vela (D-Texas), who represents a South Texas border districting including Brownsville, resigned resigned from the Congressional Hispanic Caucus over its members’ support of the comprehensive immigration reform bill’s multi-billion dollar security measures, known as the ‘border surge.’ The news was first reported Tuesday by the Houston Chronicle,” says the Huffington Post.

“Vela’s decision came days after he joined fellow Texas Democratic Reps. Pete Gallego and Beto O’Rourke on the floor of the House in criticizing the immigration bill’s emphasis on border security.”

Senate Bill Won’t Stop Illegal Immigration

“Despite billions of dollars in new Border Patrol agents and fencing, the Senate’s immigration bill will still only stop between a third and half of all illegal immigrants, according to the latest analysis the Congressional Budget Office released Tuesday morning. Backers have said they guaranteed that the bill, which passed the Senate on a 68-32 vote last week, would stop a new wave of illegal immigration, which they said was the necessary precondition for legalizing the current illegal population,” the Washington Times reports. “Even though it doesn’t stop illegal immigration, the bill’s additional border security is an improvement over a previous version, which CBO analysts said would only stop about a quarter of illegal immigrants. The difference works out to about 800,000 fewer illegal immigrants by 2023 than would have entered the country under the original bill.”

Immigrants Account For All Job Growth Since 2000

“Immigrants — both legal and illegal — have accounted for all of the job gains in the U.S. labor market since 2000, according to a report that highlights the stiff competition for jobs in a tight economy as Congress debates adding more workers to the mix.
The Center for Immigration Studies report, which is being released Wednesday, says 22.4 million immigrants of working age held jobs at the beginning of this year, up 5.3 million over the total in 2000. But native-born workers with jobs dropped 1.3 million over that same period, from 114.8 million to 113.5 million,” the Washingon Times reports.