Archive for the ‘Immigration’ Category

The sticking point in Obama’s immigration-reform pitch

President Obama went to El Paso, Texas, on Tuesday to make another pitch for immigration reform. And, as Allahpundit notes at Hot Air, you’ve heard it all before.

To the degree that one could find in Obama’s remarks even the rough outlines of a plan for comprehensive immigration reform, it was in this section:

First, we know that government has a threshold responsibility to secure the borders and enforce the law. Second, businesses have to be held accountable if they exploit undocumented workers. Third, those who are here illegally have a responsibility as well. They have to admit that they broke the law, pay their taxes, pay a fine, and learn English. And they have to undergo background checks and a lengthy process before they can get in line for legalization.

And fourth, stopping illegal immigration also depends on reforming our outdated system of legal immigration. We should make it easier for the best and the brightest to not only study here, but also to start businesses …

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Immigration: Stupid protester tricks on display downtown

I have to question the tactics of the students who disrupted traffic in downtown Atlanta on Tuesday afternoon, and not just because they outed themselves as illegally present in the United States and then did something to get themselves arrested. From the AJC:

Activists blocked traffic on downtown Courtland Street for about an hour Tuesday afternoon as they demonstrated against a ban on illegal immigrants attending Georgia colleges.

Police routed traffic off the road and onto Gilmer Street during the protest and then arrested at least seven of the activists. Authorities reopened Courtland just before 4 p.m.

Earlier Tuesday afternoon, several of the activists declared they were illegally in the country and decried restrictions illegal immigrant students face in the United States.

Some spoke in favor of the DREAM Act, a congressional measure that would have given young illegal immigrants a path to legal status if they enrolled in college or joined the military. That measure …

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Georgia can treat, but not cure, immigration issues

There are a number of natural tensions for Republican lawmakers in Georgia as they try to curb illegal immigration. Here are two of the stronger ones, and ways legislators might think about them while considering various immigration bills:

1. The tension between federal responsibility and state problems.

The states — particularly those, like Georgia, that are not on the border — can do only so much to stanch illegal immigration. But they bear the lion’s share of the costs, from education to health care to law enforcement.

Add those facts to the usual political dynamics of courting a growing group of voters while trying to please — or at least not alienate — a base of support, and Washington’s inaction on immigration is easily explained. (Incidentally, this is one topic Congress might handle differently if U.S. senators were still appointed by, and answered to, state legislatures as they did before the 17th Amendment.)

Last year’s election campaign featured a lot of …

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On immigration reform, incrementalism’s good for Georgia

The AJC’s Jeremy Redmon reports today on some of the immigration-related measures that state Republican leaders are likely to push in the legislative session that begins next week. This outline of the main legislative thrust, from Rep. Matt Ramsey (a Peachtree City Republican and co-chairman of the Joint House and Senate Study Committee on Immigration Reform), strikes me as a sensible way to start:

* Ways to encourage more communities to apply to join a federal immigration enforcement program called 287(g). Through the program, local police officers and sheriff’s deputies are given the power to question people about whether they are in the country legally and issue arrest warrants, prepare charging documents, and detain and transport people for immigration violations;

* Measures to toughen an existing Georgia law requiring state and local government contractors to ensure their employees are eligible to legally work in the United States. The legislation could also include …

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