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What is Amnesty?

Government cannot be trusted to fulfill its promises. Voters are looking for action--tangible solutions to our border security problems. A big fence would be something like that. Instead, we get a lot of promises, a lot of compromises--and I thought we had a majority control--and very little principled solutions. I don't want more bigger government and virtual fences or complicated legislation that is completely unenforceable.

Michelle Malkin reminds everyone the history of our government's record on immigration reform.

The open borders lobby says the "immigration reform" compromise sellout won't encourage law-breaking. But the OBL conveniently forgets that the historical record provides absolutely no evidence in support of this claim. There have been seven illegal alien amnesties passed into law since 1986:

  • The 1986 Immigration and Reform Control Act blanket amnesty for an estimated 2.7 million illegal aliens
  • 1994: The "Section 245(i)" temporary rolling amnesty for 578,000 illegal aliens
  • 1997: Extension of the Section 245(i) amnesty
  • 1997: The Nicaraguan Adjustment and Central American Relief Act for nearly one million illegal aliens from Central America1998: The Haitian Refugee Immigration Fairness Act amnesty for 125,000 illegal aliens from Haiti
  • 2000: Extension of amnesty for some 400,000 illegal aliens who claimed eligibility under the 1986 act
  • 2000: The Legal Immigration Family Equity Act, which included a restoration of the rolling Section 245(i) amnesty for 900,000 illegal aliens]

Guess what? None--not one--of those amnesties was associated with a decline in illegal immigration. On the contrary, the number of illegal aliens in the U.S. has tripled since President Reagan signed the first amnesty in 1986. The total effect of the amnesties was even larger because relatives later joined amnesty recipients, and this number was multiplied by an unknown number of children born to amnesty recipients who then acquired automatic US citizenship.

And as I've noted before, there is no such thing as a "temporary" amnesty.

If this is what Sen. Frist thinks Americans "expect" and "deserve," the GOP is in for a very rude awakening in November.

Michelle also linked to Tom Tancredo's statement on Human Events Online, in response to the compromise.
"The Senate's amnesty authors don't dispute that their deal will offer blanket amnesty to at least 10 million illegal aliens -- everyone who entered the country illegally through 2004. But they wouldn't be dealing honestly with the American people if they failed to state what will happen with the additional two million or more illegal aliens who came here more recently. No illegal alien with half a brain would admit that they came here after 2004. And how could law enforcement tell? The Senate deal asks people who have broken the law for years -- often using fraudulent documents -- to provide proof that they've lived here. I can guarantee that many of those fraudulent documents--which law enforcement hasn't been able to detect yet -- will be used to obtain legal status.
Glenn Reynolds had Frist on his podcast show. As always, Reynold's podcasts feature awesome intro music.
The Glenn and Helen Show: Bill Frist on Immigration and PorkBusters

We managed to catch up with Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist this morning, and talked to him about immigration -- both legal and illegal -- whether the issue will split the Republican party, and what he thinks about Trent Lott's remarks on PorkBusters, and about pork generally.

It's shorter than our usual interview, as he only had about 10 minutes this morning (things are kind of busy in the Senate) but I think you'll find it worth listening to.

You can listen directly by clicking here (no iPod needed!) or you can get it here via iTunes. A low-fi version for dialup is available here, and, of course, there's an archive of all our previous podcasts here.

Good questions and interesting perspective from Reynolds and Frist. He has some good thoughts--I just wished they would get some backbone, and act like a majority!

Update: Thank you Glenn for the link. Welcome to Instapundit readers. Hope you'll share some thoughts via the comments.

Tags: Politics, border, Homeland Security, MEXICO, Immigration, Illegal Aliens, Border Security, California, GOP

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