- To realize his vision of what he calls "the new
America," President George W. Bush proposed a dramatic and sweeping
expansion of American immigration policy, including amnesty for an estimated
9 million to 12 million illegal aliens living in the U.S.
- Although the president and administration officials insist
the proposal is not amnesty, illegal aliens will not be prosecuted for
violating immigration law, and will instead receive eligibility to apply
for "green cards" and eventual U.S. citizenship without penalty
if U.S. employers are willing to give them jobs. The proposal dramatically
expands U.S. immigration policy by eliminating current limits on the number
of foreigners entering the country to work.
- "The president has long talked about the importance
of having an immigration policy that matches willing workers with willing
employers," said White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan.
- The immigration proposal is certain to accelerate the
de-Americanization of the U.S. hailed by then-candidate George W. Bush
in August, 2000. During a campaign visit to Miami, he told an Hispanic
audience that he welcomes the transformation of the U.S. by non-European
- "America has one national creed, but many accents.
We are now one of the largest Spanish-speaking nations in the world. We're
a major source of Latin music, journalism, and culture. Just go to Miami,
or San Antonio, Los Angeles, Chicago, or West New York, New Jersey... and
close your eyes and listen. You could just as easily be in Santo Domingo
or Santiago, or San Miguel de Allende. For years our nation has debated
this change - some have praised it and others have resented it. By nominating
me, my party has made a choice to welcome the new America."
- Under Bush's proposed amnesty, illegal immigrants will
be eligible to apply for temporary worker status for up to six years, getting
all the benefits of a citizen ranging from drivers' licenses to Social
Security checks. To facilitate the amnesty, the president is asking Congress
to raise the number of legal "green cards" handed out to immigrants
each year, but he has so far not specified how many millions will be needed.
- Bush said that the new "temporary workers"
could also apply for citizenship "in the normal way" and travel
outside the U.S. and return, bringing their entire families with them to
live in the U.S.
- If passed by Congress as proposed, there would be no
limit on the number of "guest workers" admitted at any time.
Any foreign national anywhere in the world could come to the U.S. if he
finds a job here. U.S. businesses could post job listings on the Inernet,
and if an American doesn't take the job in an unspecified time span then
the business could import a foreign worker.
- Economists note that employers will likely hire more
foreigners than they do now, because Third World populations are willing
to work for less wages than American workers are. The Washington Times
quotes a White House official who said the fact that a job is open will
be assumed to mean that the marketplace has determined the need for another
immigrant. As a result, the upward pressure of Third World immigration
on the joblessness among U.S. workers and the downward pressure on wages
will be increased.
- The president's proposal includes extending the benefits
of America's Social Security system to Mexican illegals. Under the Social
Security Act, illegal aliens are eligible for benefits only if the U.S.
and the home country of an illegal have a "totalization" agreement.
If Congress agrees and the president successfully negotiates such an agreement
with Mexico, the end result will add billions in entitlement obligations
to a Social Security system that faces revenue shortfalls in the near future.
- The Center for Immigration Studies says in light of the
number of legal and illegal Mexicans potentially eligible for benefits
under the Bush plan, the total expenditure for U.S. taxpayers would far
surpass $1 billion annually. Reporter Joel Mowbray calculates that a "totalization"
agreement with Mexico could well cost U.S. taxpayers $345 billion over
the next 20 years. If untold millions of illegal Mexicans, Middle Easterners
and others are allowed to collect full Social Security benefits for themselves
and their families -- without having to work the required number of years
that law-abiding citizens work to be eligible -- the system could go belly-up
- Because the children of illegal immigrants born on U.S.
soil automatically become U.S. citizens, Third World populations seeking
welfare and free healthcare have long sought to sneak across U.S. borders.
In President Bush's "New America," those populations will need
only become "temporary guest workers" with no fear of deportation.
Everyone knows the government could never expel the "guest worker"
parents of a U.S. citizen child born on American soil.
- The Bush amnesty has been endorsed by leading conservative
Republicans like Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, R-XX, and the editors
of the right-wing "Weekly Standard," but a number of GOP candidates
running for the U.S. House and Senate around the country are scrambling
to distance themselves from the White House on this issue.
- U.S. Rep. Johnny Isakson is one example. Running for
the Senate in Georgia, Isakson flatly says the proposal rewards law-breaking
and that he won't support it. All of the candidates in Georgia's 6th District
congressional GOP primary broke with their president after his announcement.
- GOP politicians face a dilemma: They know polls show
that most Americans oppose amnesty for illegals by wide margins, but they
fear crossing the White House and its new "Hispanic strategy"
developed by powerful Bush political advisor Karl Rove.
- Bush's "temporary worker" scheme is not likely
to pass Congress if Republicans realize they could face a GOP voter revolt