Immigration Deal? Let the Sunshine In!

I don’t know about you, but I’m very suspicious of whatever “deal” they’ve cooked up on Capitol Hill that will ostensibly provide meaningful reform to a system that is horrendously broken. For starters, I am immediately wary of any deal that is described only through talking points and platitudes on the Hill rather than a substantive piece of legislation the public can review, reflect on and react to.

Earlier today, Heritage Foundation policy expert Robert Rector discussed some startling statistics that have me quite concerned. For one, he estimates that there are some 9 million (probably a low estimate) working-age individuals who are here in the United States illegally. Should the Congress provide amnesty or some other path to citizenship, the benefits paid out by the government to these folks will be in excess of $2.5 trillion — yes, trillion — when they reach retirement age. Given the inability of Congress to address the entitlement shortfalls we have with legal, tax-paying Americans, I’m shocked they would kick the can down the field to allow politicians in later years to address this significant and potentially devastating hit to the Treasury.
Next, Rector estimates that there are some 600,000 illegal immigrants who have thumbed their noses at legal deportation orders from a judge. Are we now going to allow these folks who have been adjudicated and ordered home a path to citizenship? Outrageous.

My biggest concern with this immigration “deal” revolves around homeland security. While amnesty advocates love to discuss poor, downtrodden folks who are just trying to earn enough money to send to their relatives back home, I’m worried about terrorists who have infiltrated our borders and have ulterior and more sinister motives. The foiled terrorist plot in Fort Dix, N.J., rounded up three illegal aliens who sought to murder American soldiers. Where is the outrage among our elected officials about this? Instead, we’re going to be subjected to self-congratulatory talk about how members of Congress have worked together in a bipartisan manner to “fix” illegal immigration.

That famous line from the movie “Network” now comes to mind: “I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take it anymore.” Republicans who vote for a bill to allow illegal aliens a path to citizenship and/or a more favorable position than those who wait for years to receive a green card without breaking the law are going to encounter an angry electorate that is not willing to return the keys of power to them on Capitol Hill when they refuse to address one of the most important issues facing our country today.

Before they ram a bill through the Congress, concerned citizens should have the opportunity to review the legislation and let their voices be heard. Otherwise, the days of the back-filled smoke rooms on Capitol Hill will have returned — and screwed their constituents in the process.