Patterico's Pontifications


Amnesty Bill: Dead?

Filed under: Immigration — Patterico @ 7:16 pm

The AP reports:

WASHINGTON — A broad immigration bill to legalize millions of people in the U.S. unlawfully failed a crucial test vote in the Senate today, a stunning setback that could spell its defeat for the year.

The vote was 45-50 against limiting debate on the bill, 15 short of the 60 that the bill’s supporters needed to prevail. Most Republicans voted to block Democrats’ efforts to bring the bill to a final vote.

Maybe we can pass a bill that concentrates on border control and deporting the criminals first.

30 Responses to “Amnesty Bill: Dead?”

  1. This is a good/bad moment for me. It’s good because the bill looks dead but it’s bad because I don’t trust Congress or the White House on this issue. Sometime in the next week, month or year, It Will Be Back.

    DRJ (2d5e62)

  2. Sure, you can pass it, but who will enforce it?

    The Republicans won’t… will the Democrats?

    Christoph (bad4f9)

  3. I’m sure the bill will not come back, or even if it does it will do so in a much better form. And, once again, I’d like to assure everyone that this is not amnesty. And, whatever you do, do not come to our campaign appearances and try to ask us embarassing questions designed to reveal flaws in our arguments and then upload those to Youtube. That wouldn’t be nice.

    Your buds in Congress (cc42f6)

  4. Seems like only last year that the right-wingers were against filibusters.

    What a difference a year makes.

    alphie (015011)

  5. alpee

    What filibuster?

    Darleen (187edc)

  6. I have decided to leave the Republican party after thirty loyal years over this. The next time an immigration bill comes up will likely be in 2013 when the next president is safely in their second term.

    The Republicans had six years to get one passed and failed. They had six years to enforce the current laws and failed. Big business won out, the republican base, and unions won. The rest of the country lost.

    There are surely more moderates than left or right base devotees who have no interest whatsoever in bipartisan fixes. No one wants to answer the question of how does this non action make us safer and does anyone really believe another bill will surface before 2013?

    voiceofreason63 (d17362)

  7. The answer, of course, is more indecision. Doing nothing is silent amnesty. If Congress stalls, illegal immigrants stay in the country without doing anything to resolve their status. And those millions – many of whom you can’t locate – are not going to be rounded up and sent back.

    steve (4b6b3f)

  8. Yes, but we could deport the criminals first.

    Patterico (eeb415)

  9. They’re easy to locate; they’re in jail.

    Patterico (eeb415)

  10. You’re right on this topic, Patterico. It’s one of the reasons I haven’t commented much… there’s nothing to debate.

    Of course you or any other real country should deport felons after they complete their sentences.


    I know people disagree with that, but I have no idea why and can’t think how to debate them. Presumably they want violent criminals who don’t have to be here because they aren’t citizens to be released after their sentences.



    Christoph (bad4f9)

  11. Deporting the criminals is a good idea, I agree. But the status quo has been established – our polarized electorate is frozen, each side scared to act. It truly doesn’t seem to matter anymore who is in charge, nothing is getting done.

    voiceofreason63 (d17362)

  12. I came to the conclusion that doing nothing was better than what this bill actually did, granting residency to everyone illegally here based on a one day window to determine if they were a danger to this country and it’s citizens. Sad to say there won’t be any budging on this issue till the border is secured and neither the DEMs or Bush has any interest in doing so yet. Things may change though, moving to 2008 a lot of politicians may see that their careers were ruined by this bill.

    Buzzy (7417f4)

  13. The current immigration laws are sufficient. They even passed a law last year authorizing many miles of more border fence. It is a total fraud that Bush and Chertoff go around saying their hands are tied without getting new (conveniently impossible to pass) laws. Without or without new laws, these clowns get to procrastinate, do nothing, and sit on their hands for the rest of Bush’s term.

    Wesson (e7f360)

  14. every 17 years, cicadas come out of the ground and make a racket.
    every 10 years, the immigration issue lights up congress and there is epic posturing and demagoguery. both the cicadas and the immigration issue go away after that for their respective lengthy periods.
    2007 is a rare cicada-immigration convergence year. savor it, because it won’t happen again until 2177, when all of us will be dead.

    other than that, yes, i agree, deport the criminals first.

    assistant devil's advocate (0e5695)

  15. This inaction will be much more detrimental to the Republicans than the democrats. A once proud party will likely claim permanent minority status in the house because of the way it has allowed its extreme elements to frame the debate on this.
    Enough is enough – if the party wants the likes of The New Republic, Hotair, Coulter and Malkin to be the voices of the party, they can have the party.
    The “adults” have ceded control to the adolescents.

    One would have thought that seeing the Democrats run off the cliff after the 2000 elections with their conspiracy theorists and BDS, the Republican leadership would have tried to avoid this.

    Alas… not to be

    voiceofreason63 (d17362)

  16. voice, polls show that, of those who knew enough about the bill to have an opinion, 70+% were against it. The bill’s supporters, of what ever party, are the ones who have to worry.

    It was a bad bill, written and submitted in an end run around the normal committee process, and they attempted to railroad it in. Good Riddance.

    Thomas Lifson, over at American Thinker, has a good essay on immigration.

    LarryD (feb78b)

  17. Larry D,

    It depends on which poll and what question was asked. Most people want a bill accomplished. Unfortunately any chance of that has been pretty much permanently torpedoed because both bases wanted “the perfect bill”.
    Do you honestly think the enforcement will magically improve now or that sanctuary cities will be discouraged?

    voiceofreason63 (d17362)

  18. “a bill” and “this bill” are totally different things, and if you can’t see that, you’re blind.

    Yes people want immigration reform. This bill wasn’t reform. At least not reform in a positive direction.

    Scott Jacobs (90eabe)

  19. Here are some of the poll reports. Emphasis mine.


    It isn’t just the Republican base that hates the bill.

    There is not a great deal of difference between Republicans and Democrats in terms of levels of support or opposition to the bill. Interestingly, independents have the highest ratio of opposition to favorability among the three partisan groups.


    In the face of public opposition, some supporters of the legislation have argued that the compromise may not be perfect but doing something is better than doing nothing. Voters have a different view–a solid plurality believes it would be better for the country to pass no bill at this time rather than letting the Senate compromise become law.

    Forty-nine percent (49%) of voters prefer no bill over the Senate bill. Just 32% prefer the legislative compromise over inaction.

    … Voters have consistently viewed immigration reform as meaning improving border security and reducing illegal immigration. Seventy-two percent (72%) of voters believe it is Very Important for “the government to improve its enforcement of the borders and reduce illegal immigration.” Adding pressure to Congress is the fact that voters see this objective as achievable –68% of Americans believe it is possible to reduce illegal immigration. Just 20% disagree. A New York Times/CBS News poll found that 82% believe the federal government could do more to reduce illegal immigration.

    LarryD (feb78b)

  20. Larry and Scott:

    Where do you see any bill appearing in the future. Will you be happy with one that a Democratic president oversees?

    I ask you to consider that if someone feels so strongly about something that it makes them feel they are not welcome in the Republican party after thirty years there may be some merit to my opinion.

    voiceofreason63 (d17362)

  21. Again I tell you that to pass a bill to simply pass a bill is moronic. Pass a bill that has real, meaningful changes and improvements.

    As it is, a LOT of the “new laws” the current bill proposes are ALREADY EXISTING LAWS!!!

    They were passed in 1996. Passing them again won’t get them enforced any more. Do what the laws on the books say first, lock down the boarder to stop the influx of illegals first, and THEN talk about amnesty and z-visas and touchbacks. Fix what’s REALLY broken first before you start tossing new crap around.

    Scott Jacobs (90eabe)

  22. Keep up the good work, Patterico. Deporting illegal immigrants who have been convicted of a crime seems so obvious that it’s hard to imagine anyone would disagree. Nevertheless, 51 Senators refused to bar known “gang members, terrorists, and other criminals” from citizenship.

    There is an enormous disconnect between citizens and politicians on immigration. The only solution is to vote for new politicians.

    DRJ (2d5e62)

  23. The Senate link has been taken down so here’s a CNN link for comment #22: Amendment 1184 to SB 1348, an amendment to establish a permanent bar for gang members, terrorists, and other criminals.

    DRJ (2d5e62)

  24. Just as in 1986, no one in Congress ever intended to enforce the provisions of this bill. It was all just smoke-and-mirrors – as are most things Congress does. If you want to enforce border restrictions, buy camping gear and a gun, because no one on the Federal dime will do it.

    Another Drew (8018ee)

  25. voiceofreason63,

    Here’s what I see happening:

    1. No bill will come out of Congress for the duration of the 110th Congress. The political campaign calendar does not allow for it.
    2. Hillary will be elected President, getting a little more than 300 electoral votes. She will be the only one with enough media/corporate support to break through a general lack of interest in all candidates.
    3. The GOP will lose two Senate seats (not too sure where, as this particular Senate cycle is run in the GOP’s own Southern/Great Plains backyard). The GOP will also GAIN some House seats, but not enough to take control of the body.
    4. The 111th Congress and Hillary will NOT be able to pass a “comprehensive reform package,” thus killing dead any idea for such a package for up to a generation.

    I think this way because I’m firmly convinced that the reaction from the GOP “base” is akin to a business plan in the first stages of execution. The ultimate goal of the business plan is to continually own the Immigration issue in perpetuity. Stalling in ’07, LOSING in ’08, and being a major PITA to Hillary are all part of the business plan.

    The business plan’s first stages of execution have succeeded, despite noises about bringing the bill back.

    Brad S (458bde)

  26. They will most likiy bring it up again we must not allow this amnesty plan we must say NO NORTH AMERICAN UNION

    krazy kagu (e7029d)

  27. #26

    The NAU hysteria is similar to the Truther garbage. NAU is an economic block similar to the EU and where the Pacific is going. This affords some protection to member states.
    Economics and business professors have been talking about the concept for over a decade.

    I don’t care for the suggestion that we take the law into our own hands. If people want to carry a weapon and shoot people so badly I recommend they join the military and volunteer for the infantry.

    voiceofreason63 (bdf42e)

  28. #27 We do not need a EU and we do not need the protection of Canada and Mexico, we are the United States of America and we do fine all by our lonesome. I also think that the bill will be coming back and because of that I will start calling my Senators on Tuesday morning before they meet with the President to remind them that I am not placated and that I am not going away. I also will continue to not support the RNC with any money until Mel is gone. I will support R candidates nationwide who run against any of the traitors who voted for this monstrosity. I have 4 voting age members of my household and we will actively campaign for anyone who runs on border enforcement first and only.

    Jaded (c8d596)

  29. #28
    So I am a traitor because I disagree with you? How mature of you. Try taking some economic classes along with a little international studies, it might help you grasp why the trade blocks are not some kind of nefarious threat.
    The Republican party is in disarray – you have people peeling off to the dems and to the independents. Post watergate numbers may be the result, but betcha by golly the base will have claimed the party.

    voiceofreason63 (d79986)

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