The reason we're hearing differing opinions on what each side wants
is that its not clear (particularly on the R-side) what they want.
I'll give it a shot (mixing in some of my own bias):
The Republicans want lawfulness. They want sensible laws and they want
these laws enforced (meaning those that violate them suffer the prescribed
The Democrats want PEOPLE to live productive and happy lives. They
particularly champion those whose law-breaking was not of their own
choice, but (for example) made by their parents. They don't really care
what the law is, but want each case evaluated via "social justice".
Doggin94it, your compromise solution stresses that the republican side
wants "states rights". Even though that is, in general, consistent with
the limited-federal-government vision that most republicans hold (as the
means to preserve our freedom for another generation), the aspect of the
AZ law that appealed MOST DIRECTLY to the R-side was that it proposed to
enforce existing law. R's view the SC decision as upholding the CENTRAL
peice of the original statute, ENFORCE THE LAWS WE HAVE.
The president has taken the action most offensive to the Rside,
"prosecutorial descretion" to change existing law with a wink and a smile.
D's (IMO) view this move as protecting people who deserve protection.
Let me see if I can make a compromise pass on your proposal to make
it more acceptable to the R-side. Here are your provisions:
[quote][list=1][*] Provides a path to citizenship for young adults meeting good behavior/contribution/current employment or education standards who were brought to the country as children;[*] Provides a path to citizenship for any illegal alien who signs up for two tours of duty in the U.S. armed forces in times of war;[*] Provides a path to permanent residence (but not citizenship) for any other illegal alien who can meet those standards (but not including "currently in school" as a viable alternative; these folks need to show gainful employment), and are in the U.S. as of the date the bill passes;[*] Provides that no illegal alien who enters the United States after the date the bill passes can take advantage of option 3, and prevents Congress from granting any such newly entered illegal aliens any path to permanent residence or citizenship other than enlistment in the armed forces in times of war;[*]Authorizes states to enforce federal immigration law, including allowing states to commence deportation proceedings in their own right (and on their own resources) in the Federal immigration courts, but which the Justice Department could choose to block by issuing specific orders in individual cases (i.e. no blanket orders - each case must be individually stopped, if the executive branch so chooses);[*]Authorizes states to enact criminal penalties of up to 3 years in jail for violation of select federal immigration laws (such as obtaining employment); and[*]Provides that the bill is not severable, so any repeal of or court challenge to any of the bill's provisions would invalidate the entire bill, except that a congressional repeal of the "no other newly entered illegal aliens can have a path to citizenship or permanent residence" would repeal only the first 3 provisions of the bill, but would leave the latter three untouched.[/list][/quote]
Here is what an R hears when you make these remarks (not what you
intended, I'll bet but nonetheless)...
The first three provisions are CLEARLY the D-spin on the issue. "Providing
the path" is an after-the-fix provision regarding what to do with past
law-breakers. R's want to start by making law, not making paths.
The fourth provision is a law that says "starting at some future date, we will
begin to enforce our laws". Prior to that we continue to ignore them.
The fifth/sixth provisions encode permanently into law the confrontational
concept that the feds cannot be trusted to enforce law and so we have
to hand this off to those states who are willing. This is the R-bandaid, not a real fix.
Let's take another cut at the problem:
[list=1][*] Invest (D-word!) resources sufficient to limit illegal entry to some small
fraction (20% or less) of the (to-be-revised) legal entry figure.[*] Define a legal entry path to the US that is simpler to apply for and
targeted at a legal entry rate (yes, we let you in) that is REALISTIC. In
analogy to speed limits, 5 mph speed limits are guarantees to lawlessness.
while 65 mph are partly enforcible (NOTHING is ever perfectly enforcible).[*] Define a "path to citizenship" for those from the prior list who meet
a series of provisions (provisions up for debate). Limit this rate to a
realistic amount.[*] Provide a time period for which foreigners already within the US territory
can apply for legal entry. [*] Provide a priority list for acceptance that reflects compassion.[/list]
In the R-order, providing for people is (sorry) last among the provisions.
To me this hits all the right points, leading with an enforced border that
is sold through the principle of what is and is not enforcible.
Compromise (the in-between) is what happens after each proposal is on the
Doggin94it and Greengeek for congress!
(Sh1t, the primary was yesterday :eek:).