Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Let's Go To Conference

Tomorrow sometime in the dead of night, the United States Senate will vote on a "comprehensive" immigration reform bill.
That is the bad news.
The good news is that the House has also passed a bill that emphasizes enforcement first.
Now that seems like two totally different things.
Well, they are but because there is such a difference, there will have to be substatial compromise and the senate version maybe the one that will have more to compromise than the House version and that is good.
As noted in earlier posts, there can be no real reform without enforcement first.
And that is what the House is saying and in a much lesser way there are forces in the Senate bringing it along.
There is no way to bring over the cliff Democrats on board to enforcement first so there is no reason to try. However, there are some who see the reality of how Americans feel about the way this debate is going. They will compromise just enough to not scare off their base. They have to. They read polls too.
Look at the election in the California 50th congressional election race. Republican Brian Bilbray is running to the right of the president on this issue and will win on it.
The American people want a two track solution.
Start with getting some security along the border. Fencing alone will not do it and the whole border can not be fenced. More Border Patrol and high tech surveillance will go along with that. But realistically, it will not stop all illegal immigration. But it will be a deterrent to the unfettered porous access that illegals have now. Also heavy fines against companies that knowingly hire illegal aliens will help.
Then we can look at having guest workers and a sane way to bring along some, defiantly not all or even close, to the path to citizenship.
But, we should not see the vote in the Senate as a bad thing. It is good because now it will go to a House-Senate conference and maybe real reform will occur.

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