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by
Rick Moran

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June 16, 2013 - 11:56 am

The Hill gives us 6 floor amendments to the immigration reform bill that bear watching over the next few weeks.

Some of them — including a border security amendment by Senator Cornyn and another by Senator Rand Paul — will probably determine whether the bill passes the Senate. Another amendment offered by Senator Patrick Leahy that would allow partners of same sex couples living overseas to apply for a green card the same way that heterosexual married couples do, would mean that Senator Marco Rubio would probably withdraw his support of the bill if the amendment is passed.

But there are two interesting amendments that will show just how serious Democrats are about immigration reform:

Rubio has offered an amendment that would require immigrants with provisional legal status, who are 16 or older to read, write and speak English. This would require that immigrants speak English before they’d be eligible to apply for a green card rather than taking the English proficiency test right before gaining citizenship.

Some Republicans argued that the Gang of Eight bill was offering undocumented immigrants amnesty because it wasn’t hard enough to start the pathway to citizenship. Rubio’s amendment bumps up the English-language requirement by a few years in the process.

[...]

Earlier this week, Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) warned the Gang of Eight that if his four amendments to the immigration reform bill weren’t included that he wouldn’t support final passage. He said he’s the kind of guy who doesn’t take “stiffing lightly.”

Hatch was one of three Republicans who voted for the bill in committee, but he said his support for final passage was contingent on further changes being made to the legislation.

“As I told my colleagues on the Judiciary Committee, my support in committee did not guarantee my support for the bill on the floor unless further changes were made to make this bill better,” Hatch said.

His amendments would ensure people on the pathway to citizenship aren’t granted federal welfare benefits, including ObamaCare, for at least five years after gaining citizenship. He also wants to strengthen language in the bill that calls for immigrants to pay back taxes.

The back taxes issue may yet be a deal killer as there have been several GOP senators who have indicated that some means to collect the back taxes of people who have lived here illegally must be found in order to guarantee their support of the final package. And while the House will be dealing with its own immigration bills, the idea that newly legalized immigrants can access Obamacare and other welfare benefits is not going over well on that side of the Hill.

These amendments represent potential booby traps that one side or the other will use in the political maneuvering to come. Democrats won’t want to budge on border security while the Leahy amendment would, if passed, probably sink the entire package.

The Democrats are going to have to give on border security and resist the temptation to pander to the gay community by passing Leahy’s amemdment. Otherwise, it is probable that the entire bill won’t even get 60 votes to overcome a filibuster and die an ignoble death.

Rick Moran is PJ Media's Chicago editor and Blog editor at The American Thinker. He is also host of the"RINO Hour of Power" on Blog Talk Radio. His own blog is Right Wing Nut House.

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All Comments   (4)
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All this is just political soap opera. The fix is in; the bill will pass, and the Dems will get the illegal alien amnesty they want, while the Repubs will get the flood of immigrants Business wants to provide low-wage competition to keep wages for all Americans low. The border will remain unsecured regardless of what the law says because the Feds will simply ignore the provisions requiring border security enforcement.

Twenty or thirty years down the road, we'll have another 20 million Illegals living here, and we'll go through the drill again.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Rick, when is the next time this mess of a bill will face a 60 vote threshold to move forward? Not understanding the process where Senators can be for it before they were against it before they were for it before they were against it in the final vote. Unfortunately there is lots of room for pointless political posturing and it's difficult for us voters to figure out which procedural votes really matter.

It would be funny if a block of safe seat can't lose Republicans switched their votes to "yea" at the last second to make Patrick Leahy's gay adoption amendment pass, killing the bill. Bet a bunch of safe seat Democrats wouldn't be willing to switch their votes to kill the amendment and save the bill.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Read the bill much more carefully. There is so much detail that illegal aliens would have to provide they they simply can't. Have you ever dealt with illegal aliens who want something from you? They play Johnny-the-dunce, no speaka-da-Englice and no-understandy at every step. They ALL have documents, but they are documents that have nothing to do with the issue at hand.
The language of the bill MUST have fine print that authorizes waivers of every requirement that the filthy politicians say exists.
Why any Republican is willing to even consider this is beyond me. This is especially true because if their crappy plan covers everyone here, they are only going to have to come up with a new plan to cover the next 10 million who sneak into our country next.
Amnesty also guarantees that we will have a permanent black underclass on the public dole. Mexicans will do the entry level work until they learn they skills to get the next level jobs but the blacks will never even try to compete because the taxpayers treat them so well.
I don't understand Rubio. I'd rather see Bam get a third term (or Hillary a first) than vote for Rubio or the jerk from South Carolina.
Why do these politicians protect the interests of illegal aliens more than the interests of Americans?
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Lessee, the Dems have the majority in the Senate, plus a few Republicans on board, but just like ObamaCare, they cannot seem to close the deal, because they insist on having all these little advantages in the details.

They are trying to get everything possible, instead of taking their winnings and leaving the table. They gamble and gamble, and wonder why they eventually lose. Morons. Get your legalization, and eventually you will win it all.

But I am down with them being so stupid and greedy. I want them to fail.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
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