This whole thing is designed to push squishy Republicans over into the “OK, we’ll give them legal status immediately but you promise to Do Something later about the border so we’ll vote yes” category
(Politico) The Senate Gang of Eight edged closer to supermajority support on its immigration bill with Thursday’s breakthrough agreement on border security and other measures meant to attract wavering Republican senators.
Negotiators said as many as 15 GOP senators who were on the fence will now be inclined to vote for the landmark bill that revamps the U.S. immigration system and gives a pathway to citizenship for millions of undocumented residents due to the agreement drafted by Republican Sens. Bob Corker of Tennessee and John Hoeven of North Dakota.
If that happens, the immigration reform bill crafted by the Gang of Eight would be much closer to reaching 70 senators in its favor, which some Gang members have wanted, and leaders say such a broad bipartisan majority could inject serious momentum into the immigration debate as it moves into the GOP-controlled House.
What does the Corker-Hoeven amendment supposedly do?
Corker and Hoeven’s plan includes a package of five conditions — or triggers — that will have to be met before current undocumented immigrants can ultimately obtain green cards.
The administration would have to get a comprehensive border security plan in place, hire an additional 20,000 border patrol agents, complete a 700-mile fence along the border, get an E-Verify system up and running and create an electronic entry-exit system at air and sea ports of entry.
They aren’t triggers, they’re supposed conditions, a plan to create a plan. Let’s not forget that the original legislation which required the 700 mile border fence was quickly watered down. The electronic entry-exit system is already mandated by law, and is much watered down from the biometric data system Republicans wanted.
Isn’t E-verify already up and running? Why yes, yes it is! As the E-verify website points out, it is federal law that employers make sure their potential hires are legally eligible to work in the US.
However, the Corker-Hoeven amendment exists simply through talking points, it has not actually been submitted on paper for people to read. It’s not available on Corker’s website, however, Corker notes
Ten years after enactment, the senators’ measure requires all five of the following conditions to be met before LPR, or a Green Card status, could be granted:
Consider: all the illegals will have had legal status for ten years. Does anyone actually think that Democrats, and some squishy Republicans, will deny them their green cards at that point if the measures aren’t met? Does anyone actually think that the Government will even remember what the conditions are 10 years after enactment? Provided they haven’t been watered down or done away with?
Here’s what FAIR has to say regarding the amendment
“The amendment offered by Senators Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) and John Hoeven (R-N.D.) offers promises of future border enforcement, while guaranteeing amnesty for illegal aliens immediately. Illegal aliens would gain irrevocable Registered Provisional Immigrant status whether or not the border enforcement promises in the amendment are ever kept.
“The amendment does nothing to address the significant problem of people who overstay visas and, in fact, weakens existing laws requiring the collection of biometric data on all people departing the United States via air, sea and land ports. Moreover, by Sen. Corker’s own admission, the amendment he is offering fails to address concerns about interior enforcement of immigration laws.
“The Corker-Hoeven amendment includes no metrics to measure if the taxpayers’ money is being spent effectively and that our borders actually are secure. Moreover, while Congress is making lofty promises about a fence and Border Patrol agents now, there is ample time for Congress to de-fund all of these promises, leaving Americans with only the amnesty.
“The Corker-Hoeven amendment is nothing more than a fig leaf designed to convince the American people that our immigration laws will be enforced in the future in exchange for granting amnesty to illegal aliens now. There is little in this amendment that should give the American people confidence that a new surge of illegal immigration will not occur over the next decade.
“The American people have been deceived too many times to believe the empty rhetoric of those who falsely claim that this legislation is tough on enforcement. It simply isn’t, and there is little reason to believe that even the watered-down enforcement promised by the Corker-Hoeven amendment will be delivered.
“The Corker-Hoeven amendment simply puts some very expensive lipstick on a pig. S.744 will deliver amnesty to the people who broke our laws, it will deliver huge increases in foreign labor for business interests, but it will do nothing to protect the interests and security of the American people.”
At this point, we can’t even apply Reagan’s “trust by verify” notion.