The “Gang of Eight” Can’t See Straight
February 20, 2013, by MICHAEL CUTLER:
In the wake of the recent elections, immigration has risen to the top of the list of newsworthy stories-in part pushed to that position of significance by statements made by key members of Congress and the President that “Pathways to Citizenship” must be provided to what they claim is a population of 11 million illegal aliens.
Some politicians, particularly those from the Republican Party, are being stampeded to act irrationally in a move to appeal to a segment of the American electorate, “Latino Voters.” We will address this foolhardy notion shortly.
While the Democratic Party has been most often seen as the party that was eager to enable and encourage millions of aliens, including illegal aliens, to enter the United States, the reality is that both Democrats and Republicans see significant gains to be achieved by opening America’s borders to aliens from around the world, irrespective of how they enter the United States.
What both parties have ignored is that America’s immigration laws were originally enacted to protect innocent lives and protect the jobs of American and lawful immigrant workers.
A Singular Issue
Immigration is not a single issue but is, rather, a singular issue that affects nearly every threat and challenge confronting America and Americans. The impact is arguably greatest where the issue of national security is concerned.
Prior to World War II, the responsibility to secure America’s borders and enforce and administer immigration laws was the responsibility of the U.S. Department of Labor. Back then it was understood that the key to growing America’s middle class and, in so doing, increase the standard of living for great numbers of American citizens, was to prevent American workers from being subjected to unfair competition from large numbers of foreign workers.
This is how the “American Dream” was born.
The responsibility of enforcing and administering immigration laws was transferred to the Department of Justice during the World War II out of a concern for the potential for saboteurs, spies and subversives to seek, in one way or another, to enter the United States. The concern was that they would try to attack America and its ability to turn out all sorts of war-related goods ranging from guns, aircraft, tanks, ships and other such essential machinery of war.
The primary mission for the five branches of the United States military is to keep America’s enemies as far from her shores as possible. In a manner of speaking, this is tantamount to declaring that their mission is to secure America’s borders externally while the DHS (Department of Homeland Security) is charged with securing America’s borders from within the United States.
When the DHS fails in its mission it undermines the efforts and sacrifices of America’s military men and women to carry out their missions. Yet all too often, this is ignored by the media and our nation’s leaders.
The Gang of Eight
During the past several weeks the White House has put together a “working group” of four Democrat and four Republican senators. These eight senators have come out in favor of enacting legislation that would grant lawful status and a pathway to citizenship for the officially estimated population of 11 million illegal aliens. In reality, it is likely that should such a legislative catastrophe be foisted on the United States, it would result in the legalization of more than 30 million aliens, many of whose true identities (even their countries of citizenship), their backgrounds and their intentions would be unknown and unknowable.
These senators are:
Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla.
Sen. John McCain, R- Ariz.
Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-SC
Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz.
Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-NY
Sen. Robert Menendez, D-NJ
Sen. Michael Bennet, D-Colo.
Sen. Richard Durbin, D-Ill.
They are referred to as the “Gang of Eight.” Since Democrats expect newly naturalized citizens to support their interests and vote for their candidates, it is not surprising that they would seek to enact “Comprehensive Immigration Reform” that would provide an estimated population of 11 million illegal aliens with lawful status and a pathway to United States citizenship.
These politicians are often unwilling to distinguish lawful immigrants from illegal aliens. They are not really pro-immigrant but pro-illegal alien!
To provide clarity, the difference between an immigrant and an illegal alien is comparable to the difference between a houseguest and a burglar.
Legal Vs. Illegal
Those who claim that there is no lawful way for immigrants to legally enter the United States ignore the fact that every year the United States admits more than 1.1 million lawful immigrants. This is a greater number than all of the immigrants admitted into every other country on our planet. These immigrants are provided with Alien Registration Cards that comply with the alien registration requirement of the INA that began with the Alien Registration Act of 1940. These lawful immigrants are immediately placed on the pathway to United States citizenship. The United States also admits more than 150 million non-immigrant visitors every year.
Meanwhile, the Republicans know that many of their deep-pocketed contributors are eager to witness massive numbers of foreign nationals (aliens) entering the United States. Banks are eager to move the earnings of foreign workers from the United States to their home countries, while corporations know that the entry of millions of foreign workers-both legal and illegal, drives down wages. Labor needs to be thought of as a commodity. If the demand for a commodity remains relatively constant but the supply of that commodity increases significantly, the value of that commodity will drop precipitously.
There is, indeed, much money to be made by exploiting foreign workers.
Here is a link to an article I wrote that appears in spring 2012 edition of “The Social Contract” that is entitled: “Immigration: The Modern Day Gold Rush”
During Ronald Reagan’s second term as President, in 1986, the Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) was enacted. This legislation provided for the legalization of an estimated one-and-a-half million illegal aliens. However, by the time the dust settled, it turned out that between three-and-a-half and four million illegal aliens had been granted lawful status.
In order to make this “one time” amnesty program palatable to those who opposed an amnesty for illegal aliens, IRCA also contained provisions that, for the first time, would penalize employers who intentionally hired illegal aliens with fines and even criminal prosecution. While it may have sounded like a good idea, these “Employer Sanctions” provisions of IRCA were largely unenforced because, at the time, there were only about 2,000 special agents employed by the INS (Immigration and Naturalization Service). They were stretched far too thin, and only a relative handful of agents were ever able to conduct employer-sanctions investigations.
Today ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement), the agency that was created in the wake of the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, has about 7,000 special agents. But unlike the INS, ICE enforces a far broader spectrum of law including customs laws. Many of the managers of ICE came from Legacy Customs. These bosses have little experience in enforcing immigration laws and, all too often, even less interest in the immigration laws. Even when managers at ICE are willing and motivated to enforce the immigration laws, they find that they lack the resources and, even more importantly, the backing of the administration to enforce the immigration laws.
America has 50 “Border States”
Earlier I mentioned the way that both America’s military services and DHS are charged with securing America’s borders. It is vital that the true nature of our borders be understood.
Many politicians have come to refer to California, New Mexico, Arizona and Texas as being “America’s four border states.” Incredibly, the Gang of Eight have decided that none other than Janet Napolitano, the Secretary of DHS, should be given the authority to decide when America’s borders are secure so that the unknown millions of illegal aliens present in the United States can be processed for lawful status and a pathway to United States citizenship. Does anyone expect her to say that she has not done a good job of securing America’s borders? Is this the only issue that should be considered?
Read more: Family Security Matters
Michael W. Cutler, is a retired INS Senior Special Agent. His career with the INS spanned some 30 years. He has provided expert witness testimony at more than a dozen Congressional hearings, he provided testimony to the 9/11 Commission and provides expert testimony at state legislative hearings across the country and in trials where immigration is at issue.
Mr. Cutler has been named Senior Immigration Editor at AND Magazine. His commentaries and weekly video programs that focus on border security and immigration issues especially where they impact national security, community safety, the economy and a host of other issues can be found at: http://www.andmagazine.com/category/talk_border.html