[Y]ou will have to come forward, pass a background check, learn English, pay a fine because you violated the law, start paying taxes and you’ll get a work permit.The key thing to understand about such "requirements" as Rubio lists is that they'd be routinely ignored, being honored, at best, in a cynical (or distracted) checking-the-boxes manner. This is a matter of experience.
For example, Joe Guzzardi, writing during VDARE.com's early years, recalled his experience during the late 1980s with illegal aliens in the cohort being laundered via the 1986 mass amnesty. At the time, Joe was teaching English as a Second Language [ESL] in Lodi, California:
During the 1980s amnesty, green card applicants were required to complete 40 hours of English instruction. Suddenly, my ESL classes went from less than half full to a point where people were bringing their own folding chairs.Then there are those threatening fines, which threats would also would surely turn out to be boob bait for bubbas (the "bubbas" here being those citizens who are angry about illegal immigration but also naive about history). During 2007's amnesty emergency, immigration patriot and VDARE.com friend Hal Netkin clued us in about this, from personal experience:
Classes were jammed. As a newcomer to teaching, I was enthusiastic about the turnout. How wonderful, I thought, that all these prospective U.S. citizens were so eager to learn English.
My bubble burst within a week. When students completed 40 hours to the minute, they presented their INS forms for my confirming signature attesting to their attendance.
At first, I balked. In the fine print, the form also said that the student had to demonstrate a mastery of conversational English and a basic understanding of U.S. history and government.
I refused to sign a federal document that made a false statement. I suggested instead that some students remain in class. After all, I reasoned, they were going to live the rest of their lives in the U.S. Why not spend a few hours a week at Adult Ed to learn your new language?
Within another week, I had my second awakening. I received a telephone call from an INS official asking me why I wasn't signing the forms. When I explained my reasoning, he responded curtly: "Sign them."
[View From Lodi, CA: Immigrants Won't Learn English. Washington Doesn't Care., January 18, 2002; links in original]
My naturalized U.S. citizen wife could have petitioned for legal residency for [her brother]. But he entered the U.S. illegally anyway. Then, in 2001, he applied for legalization via the 245(i) provision, which required the payment of a $1,000 fine.
I was the one who filed, on behalf of my wife, for my brother-in-law. In my telephone inquiries to the then-INS (the part that was succeeded by the equally dysfunctional U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, USCIS) for official instructions on how to proceed, I asked when and where the $1,000 fine would have to be paid.
I was told that there were no specifics, but it would probably have to be paid when my brother- in-law received his visa, approximately eight years from the time we received his "notice of action" form in 2001. The time period was subsequently stretched to about 13 years, so he has 7 more years to go.
As it turns out, there are still absolutely no specifics on how and where the fine has to be paid. Recently I checked my brother-in-law's status by phoning USCIS. His application was approved but has not yet been transferred to the National Visa Center.
During the telephone conversation, I asked when the fine had to be paid. I was told that there was nothing in my brother-in-law's record about paying any fine!
[A California Reader Predicts That The $5,000 Amnesty “Fine” Will Never Be Collected, May 22, 2007; links and emphasis in original]The dynamics of all this are easy to understand—they're examples of typical "Get to 'Yes'" pressures on benefits-granting bureaucracies. If a case worker takes the job seriously and, in so doing, says "No" to an applicant who doesn't qualify for the benefits, there's an unhappy applicant with, undoubtedly, avenues for appeal (and often with a crew of friends and/or other interested parties who will join in pressuring the bureaucracy). So the process stretches out, surely involving at some point the case worker's supervisor, who also doesn't need the hassle.
Thus, getting to "No" is costly in both time and in the bureaucrats' beleaguered feelings from being upbraided as "mean" or "uncompassionate" (the latter being nearly a hanging offense in today's therapeutic society).
But saying "Yes" when the decision should be "No" leaves everyone directly involved either happy or, anyway, unhassled, victimizing only the taxpayers, who have no idea what's going on.