On Immigration Reform – No Surprise

I was feeling guilty about not engaging or following the current Comprehensive Immigration Reform bill, but given the latest round of news, I’m not feeling guilty anymore.

I just can’t be surprised by the direction it’s taken. Everything’s hunky dory until Republicans realize that they have to throw a wrench somewhere, so here come the border triggers.  Why would somebody like Cornyn or Sessions care about having a good bill that passes? They’re set for life in the Senate, for as long as they want (unless something changes in Texas!), and they are certainly not on a presidential track.

Basically, all the good stuff that we want, like an actual path to citizenship, won’t be implemented unless we first pay our dues to border security. Thus, “border triggers”, including incredible amounts of money for the Department of Homeland Security (over one billion dollars), a goal of 100% operational security, E-Verify and biometric systems, and a 90% apprehension rate at the border.

Naturally, none of that has any bearing on the people who are already here. They can do absolutely nothing to affect their immigration status, they have to wait for this mythical “100% operational security” to happen. It’s like 0% unemployment. Also, unicorns.

Comprehensive bills have always held everything hostage at the expense of passing individual pieces of legislation (and not just for immigration. See the failed climate bill of 2009…I’m just not a fan of comprehensive anything),  and it opens the door to having conversations about border security. Because, y’all, if we’re talking about immigration reform, we absolutely cannot leave out border security. Right?  According to the Republican and, unfortunately, the Democratic frame, right.

A few words on the lackluster rollout of FWD.us. Where are they learning negotiation? They hand out support for the Keystone XL pipeline, hoping, hoping, that this will incentivize Republicans in conservative districts to break rank with their very vocal voting constituency?  Fool proof!  Just like the way in which Obama deported record numbers of immigrants in order to prove his border security chops to Republicans, and that has really worked…so…well…

Meanwhile, we can stop deportations and disrupt detention centers.  Sign and call!

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