S 744: Amnesty Before Enforcement

Article subtitle: 
Statement of Mark Krikorian, Executive Director of the Center for Immigration Studies Before the Senate Committee on the Judiciary
Article author: 
Mark Krikorian
Article publisher: 
Right Side News
Article date: 
25 April 2013
Article category: 
National News
Article Body: 

Statement of Mark Krikorian, Executive Director of the Center for Immigration Studies Before the Senate Committee on the Judiciary 

There may be circumstances under which an amnesty for certain illegal aliens would make sense. Given the pervasive and deliberate non-enforcement of the immigration laws for so many years, and the resulting large population of illegal aliens, one could make a case for clearing the decks, as it were, and making a fresh start.

This would be a distasteful proposition, to be sure, given that virtually all illegal aliens are guilty of multiple felonies, among them identity theft, document fraud, tax evasion, and perjury. Nonetheless, for practical reasons conferring legal status on established, non-violent illegal aliens may well, at some point, be a policy option worth discussing.

But only after the problem that allowed the mass settlement of illegal aliens has been addressed.

S 744 takes the opposite approach. It legalizes the illegal population before the necessary tools are in place to avoid the development of yet another large illegal population. As such, it paves the way for yet more demands for amnesty a decade or so in the future, as those who entered in, say 2015, are so well-established by 2023 that we will be told that we have to permit them to stay as well.

What's more, the legalization provisions of the bill make widespread fraud very likely...

S 744 thus places amnesty before enforcement, and ensures an amnesty process that would reward fraud. A better approach would be to make the initial legalization dependent on the bill's enforcement provisions, rather than a future upgrade in status. The enforcement provisions themselves would have to be strengthened by requiring, for instance, biometric exit-tracking at all ports of entry, not just airports and seaports — as it already required in current law and as was recommended by the 9/11 Commission. Another trigger for initial legalization would have to be an explicit statement by Congress that states and localities are not preempted from enforcing civil immigration law.

And any future amnesty would need to be constructed differently. Not only should all lies, however small, be punished with criminal prosecution, but the amnesty might best be conducted piecemeal, rather than addressing millions of people effectively all at once. That is to say, candidates might be considered as they are apprehended for traffic stops or factory raids or what have you, with those who fail to qualify be removed...