Immigration Debate Update: More Amendments, Less Progress
May 17, 2006, 05:06 PM
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Senators Kyl and Cornyn introduced an amendment to exclude illegal aliens who have been convicted of a felony or three misdemeanors from staying in the United States.

You might remember before Easter when this amendment was considered a deal-breaker and and one of the reasons for which the Senate did not pass any reform legislation—what`s changed?

Some will claim a new desire for compromise among legislators but how can anyone really believe that?

The amendment was weakened—significantly.

There are exceptions for "hardship cases" and illegal aliens who claim they didn`t know a previous deportation order had been issued for them.

The language is intentionally vague and disingenous—everybody and their brother will claim ignorance and hardship. Interstingly enough, I thought we lived in a country where ignorance of the law was no excuse??

**UPDATE: The amendment passed 99 to 0

There was also a Sessions Amendment that would build 370 miles of fence on the border with Mexico and more than 500 miles of vehicle obstacles—which I assume are structures that prevent vehicles from driving through.

So far, that amendment has been set aside and should be voted on later.

**UPDATE: The Amendment also passsed 83 to 16.

Senator Vitter (R-Louisiana) is introducing his amendment which would strengthen the current bill (S.2611) in many ways—namely, it would not allow any guest worker program or anything of the like to be implemented until the border is secure.

This has been tried before (a few times) and failed. Senator Vitter is a cutie-pie but I am not holding out hope that his amendment will pass.