Immigration Measure in Doubt Over Senate Defections

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The fate of U.S. immigration legislation was cast into doubt when at least six senators who helped revive the proposed overhaul said they either oppose or are leaning against a move to permit a vote on final passage.

The measure is in more jeopardy ``than I thought a few hours ago,'' said Senator Christopher Dodd, a Connecticut Democrat.

The supporters' strategy of disposing of amendments that threatened the legislation's bipartisan support hit a procedural snag late in the day, adding to the uncertainty. The Senate refused to set aside an amendment by Montana Democrats Max Baucus and Jon Tester that would dilute requirements employers verify the identity of new workers.

Under Senate rules, Majority Leader Harry Reid, a Nevada Democrat, now can't move to consider other provisions without getting the consent of all 100 senators.

``I think this hurts'' the measure, said Texas Republican John Cornyn, an opponent.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Economics, Politics

Posted June 28, 2007 at 6:46 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

1. Harvey wrote:

I think it is time to bring employers to the bar of justice who knowingly employ illegal immigrants.  But oh my, that would increase our fruit and vegetable prices.  Oh and to add fuel to the fire, I read recently that more than 50% of American eat too much anyway.

June 28, 9:29 am | [comment link]
2. Irenaeus wrote:

Harvey: I agree on the need for stronger, steadier enforcement of sanctions on employers.
_ _ _ _ _ _

“More than 50% of American eat too much anyway.”

But not too many fruits and vegetables.

June 28, 9:54 am | [comment link]
3. bob carlton wrote:

Senator Lindsey Graham, a South Carolina Republican who is one of the architects of the immigration overhaul, said he also had received threats in telephone calls and letters to his office. Mr. Graham said several other senators had told him privately that they also received similar messages.

“There’s racism in this debate,” Mr. Graham said. “Nobody likes to talk about it, but a very small percentage of people involved in this debate really have racial and bigoted remarks. The tone that we create around these debates, whether it be rhetoric in a union hall or rhetoric on talk radio, it can take people who are on the fence and push them over emotionally.”

June 28, 12:05 pm | [comment link]
4. Chris wrote:

#3: I will very likely be voting for Graham’s opponent in the Reublican primary (next year).  He has really disgraced himself.

June 28, 12:37 pm | [comment link]
5. bob carlton wrote:

i feel for you, chris - it’s tough herding the cats in the gop right now - they just won’t stay on the same page

June 28, 1:41 pm | [comment link]
6. Deja Vu wrote:

#3 bob carlton makes a good point that accusations of racism directed at opponents to illegal immigration are inappropriate in this debate. The text he quotes includes these words

“a very small percentage of people involved in this debate really have racial and bigoted remarks.”

All the racist and bigotted remarks I have heard have come from people associated with the organization La Raza and the organization By Any Means Necessary. However, they seem to think that anyone who wants the USA to be an English speaking nation is making a racist remark.

June 28, 1:45 pm | [comment link]
7. libraryjim wrote:

the measure was defeated again with 53 Senators voting against limiting debate, which was a condition Harry Reid had for bringing it up for vote again.

June 28, 2:34 pm | [comment link]
8. bob carlton wrote:

i am no fan of bush - did not like him when he lived in my neighborhood, when he was my gov & for the last 6 years especially

that said, i have to say that I respect that he spent his last remaining capital on this, despite the fact it seemed doomed to failure

the u.s. catholic bishops, not a particularly progressive lot after jp 2 & benedict, said it so well:

It is crucial that members of the Senate work out their differences. Passage of immigration reforms will require our nation’s leaders to turn contentiousness into consensus, replace emotion with reason and bridge divisiveness with bipartisanship. Congress has an opportunity to make a real difference in the lives of millions of people who are seeking the promise of a better tomorrow here in the United States

what a sad day when the party of lincoln is beholded to hate-mongers like limbaugh, savage & Kaiser Dobson

June 28, 2:50 pm | [comment link]
9. Reactionary wrote:

For my part, I am grateful that this determined effort by the elite to destroy what remains of the nation’s social fabric was defeated in accordance with the wishes of clear majorities of the electorate.

June 28, 2:59 pm | [comment link]
10. libraryjim wrote:

I have to go with Reactionary on this one.  This bill (all 700 pages of it) would have done nothing to reform the immigration system, nor helped local communities deal with the huge numbers of illegals flooding their neighborhoods.  Does anyone really think an illegal alien would come forward to pay $5,000 and willingly leave the country to then enroll to come here legally? 

The worst part of the bill may have been the posturing to eliminate debate and limit amendments to the bill in both houses of Congress.

The second worst part was the posturing “this bill isn’t perfect, but it’s the best we can do”.  Um, if there are problems, then shouldn’t those problems be brought up for debate to work out the problems to get it right?

Third, it would have done nothing to beef up security on the borders, or tighten national security, and would have gutted the ‘fence’ legislation passed a few months ago.

No, this bill was way to flawed for anyone to really want it to pass.

Jim Elliott

June 28, 3:44 pm | [comment link]
11. Irenaeus wrote:

Jim #10]: The bill would have made a series of long-overdue changes in the rules governing legal immigration: e.g., in giving prospective immigrants with needed skills priority over chain migrants. Under the current system, if one person from an extended family immigrates, everyone else in the family can claim a high priority in the name of “family reunification.” It makes no sense to fill up legal immigration quotas in that manner, particularly in view of how many people with needed skills want to immigrate to the United States.

The United States will not slash illegal immigration and its associated problems without (1) requiring super-secure identification cards and (2) consistently penalizing employers who hire illegal immigrants. Enforcement against employers would need to go beyond sporadic, showy raids.

Where there’s a demand, there will be a supply. That’s what capitalism is all about. The 1986 immigration reforms, which included an amnesty, fell short because emloyers found they could continue business as usual.
_ _ _ _ _

A word about restricting amendments in the Senate. A senator can normally offer almost any proposal as an amendment to almost any bill (e.g., amending an immigration bill to award a congressional gold medal to Paris Hilton).

But if the Senate invokes cloture to limit debate on a bill, all amendments to the bill must be germane. That’s not exactly outrageous. Senators could otherwise conduct a filibuster by offering extraneous amendments. A motion to strike a provision from the bill (e.g., amnesty) is always germane. Critics of the bill could also have conditioned support for cloture on obtaining unanimous consent to make specified nongermane amendments in order even after cloture.

June 28, 6:05 pm | [comment link]
12. libraryjim wrote:

Regardless, this was not a good bill. Its defeat was a good thing.

June 28, 6:55 pm | [comment link]
13. Scotsreb wrote:

As an immigrant myself, I know how flawed are governmental bodies in charge of immigration. The INS lost my file for 3 years while I was going through my citizenship application.  I am convinced that as they are currently led, staffed and run, the INS cannot organize a two car funeral. 

That said, from my own experience, I know it would be impossible for that department to accurately and correctly log in, register and background check the millions of illegals currently in situ.  Goodness, the original bill only gave INS/ICE 48 hours to do the job prior to the issuance of a Z-Visa.

The problem is though in the main, that there is simply NO will in the US Government to control the influx of illegals, and it is easily understood as:
1) Republicans under the pressure of the Chamber of Commerce and the business community, want to continue to allow in a new crop of mud-sill labour, who continue to break wage levels down and increase their bottom lines while putting at risk, the middle class, &
2) Democrats want to bring in a huge new electorate of victims who they can woo to their side, through government welfare programs and thus, ensure that the Dems have a lock on power for decades to come.

I say, a plague on BOTH their houses..

Yes, the bill had some good items within it, as noted by #11, but it hid other disastrous, I would almost say nefarious items that would have served to exacerbate the chaos we currently have here in the SW and extend it nationwide.  The blatant ram-rodding of this thing, to pass it through before many actually knew what was in it, is all the more disgusting. 

Solutions to the existing problem are difficult, mostly due to the intentional inaction taken by the government since the last amnesty.
If they want to start making efforts to solve the issue, they can start with a few first steps though, all of which are possible without any further action from Congress.
1) Finish the border fence, as already approved by Congress.  Jest git ‘er done.
2) Amend lenient policy within INS/ICE, regarding catch & release.  You catch them, re-export them.
3) Take charge of illegals now in state jails and upon their release from custody, send them home, not to East LA, but to Oaxaca.  The current practice of the Feds, is to ignore these parolees and instruct the states to release them into the state population.
4) Disallow local state and municipal authorities from setting up their own, local foreign policy initiatives through the creation of sanctuary cities, in contravention of Federal statutes.
5) Re-pay the local authorities, and thereby alleviate a HUGE local tax bite on the citizens of the SW, for the billions of dollars they are forced to spend, while taking care of the health, schooling, welfare and housing of illegals.

Let’s see the Feds take responsibility for the costs of paying for their 2 decades of ignoring thier own laws and regulations.

Yeah.. Right.  Like that’s going to happen.

June 28, 7:00 pm | [comment link]
14. Sarah1 wrote:

RE: “what a sad day when the party of lincoln is beholded to hate-mongers like limbaugh, savage & Kaiser Dobson . . . “

LOL.  And hatemongers like me and all the other conservatives who opposed this bill.

[roll eyes] I always know when someone’s doing good—when progressives call them “hatemongers”.

Thank God for Dobson, Rush, and any one else in talk radio who helped get the word out.  By the progressive definition of the word, I like hatemongers.

June 28, 8:10 pm | [comment link]
15. bob carlton wrote:

i made a clear attempt not to characterize either the party or conservatives as the issue, rather folks like limbaugh, savage & Kaiser Dobson

June 29, 12:37 am | [comment link]
16. Sarah1 wrote:

RE: “. . . rather folks like limbaugh, savage & Kaiser Dobson . . . “

And I made a clear attempt to say thanks and how much I like the people described by progressives as “hatemongers”.

Good deal—I’ll try to find more such “hatemongers” . . .

They did great work.

June 29, 12:42 am | [comment link]
17. Deja Vu wrote:

#8. bob carlton you wrote:

i am no fan of bush - did not like him when he lived in my neighborhood, when he was my gov & for the last 6 years especially

Consider the implications of these minor wording changes:

i am no fan of bush - did not like him when we lived in the same neighborhood, when he was our gov & for the last 6 years especially

June 29, 1:27 am | [comment link]
18. libraryjim wrote:

IMO, those who call Limbaugh, etc. “hatemongers” have never listened to them, but get their information ABOUT them from CNN and other media outlets.  I’ve listened to:

—Limbaugh since the 1990’s. I’ve never heard him advocate hate or even ‘preach it’.  What he says that is considered by opponents ‘hate’ is usually a parody or obvious sarcasm used to illustrate a point (“illustrating absurdity with humor” as he calls it). 

—Glenn Beck since last year, and I find him inconsistent (probably due to his ADD). But again, no hatred presented there.

—Sean Hannity since this year. Probably the most balanced of the bunch. While he makes it clear he is conservative, he gives the other side a chance. through guests from both sides of issues on his radio show.

—Mark Levin since last year.  Interesting person. Over the top much of the time, but thinks out the issues and makes intelligent presentations.

—Michael Savage once.  that was enough. I didn’t like him, so cannot comment.

I’ve never heard (or heard of) Kaiser Dobson.  But all of the above are intelligent, think out their comments on issues (which are well researched), and say outrageous things to get attention.  But do not present hate-filled rhetoric.

That said, write the Nobel Peace Prize committee and tell them to give it to Rush Limbaugh this year!

June 29, 1:46 pm | [comment link]
19. bob carlton wrote:

o libraryjim, you are a funny one

limbaigh not advocating hate ?  hannity balanced ?  and the Nobel thing - hahahahaha

thanks, I needed a laugh today

June 29, 2:08 pm | [comment link]
20. Irenaeus wrote:

Jim [#18]: Al Franken (got your attention, eh?), in his book, Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them (2003), documents persistent and recalcitrant lying by Rush Limbaugh (chapter 13) and Sean Hannity (chapter 14). I know you’re a level-headed, fact-oriented guy, so I’m curious whether you think Franken has documented his charges.

June 29, 2:18 pm | [comment link]
21. Deja Vu wrote:

So, who is “Kaiser Dobson”?

June 29, 2:25 pm | [comment link]
22. Sarah1 wrote:

Library Jim,

I suspect that “Kaiser Dobson” is James Dobson . . . you know, the hatemongering Christian pediatric psychologist. . . . ; > )

Which is why I essentially redefine pretty much everything progressive Episcopalians say now.  When they say “love” I think bad, when they say “hate” I think good—we just don’t have the same foundational worldviews enough to even have words in common anymore.

June 29, 2:39 pm | [comment link]
23. Sarah1 wrote:

Bob Carlton nicely demonstrates what I just said.

“Balance”, “hate”, pretty much everything I have to say the opposite.  When a progressive Episcopalians says “unbalanced”—even if I don’t know the person—I know to go check them out.

Two gospels.  One church.  Won’t last.

June 29, 2:41 pm | [comment link]
24. libraryjim wrote:

A book by J. P. Muro refuting Franken’s claims was written not long after his came out. Title:
Al Franken is a Buck-toothed Moron

Franken is just another of those ‘liberals’ to whom one goes to back up pre-conceived negative notions of conservatives.  I, however, did not base my view of Mr. Franken on Mr. Muro’s book:  I listened to Franken.  For about 20 minutes (I think it was on Comedy Central). It was enough.  The title of Mr. Muro’s book was accurate.

If you want an accurate picture of what Rush Limbaugh says, listen to Rush Limbaugh, not Al Franken.

June 29, 2:49 pm | [comment link]
25. bob carlton wrote:

James Dobson thinks America deserves the destruction of a major U.S. city

  DOBSON: Some of our listeners are not going to agree with what he [MacArthur] has to say, but it’s going to make you think, and it’s also going to be somewhat disturbing. And I happen to agree with what John MacArthur was saying on this day, and I want to thank him and his team and Woodman Valley Chapel for allowing us to share this message. It needs to be heard, especially at this time in our nation.

What did John MacArthur say?

  We haven’t had a massive calamity such as the destruction of an entire city. We certainly don’t want that to happen—pray that does not happen—but it could happen. And God would be just in any calamity that he brought upon us.

When the dirty bomb hits L.A., MacArthur thinks it will be because of Lesbians (I’m not kidding), and so does James Dobson.

  You know a society has been abandoned by God when it celebrates lesbian sex.

June 29, 3:02 pm | [comment link]
26. Deja Vu wrote:

So, bob carlton, in #15 were you referring to James Dobson by the name “Kaiser Dobson” or is that someone else?

June 29, 3:07 pm | [comment link]
27. bob carlton wrote:

During his long reign over the airwaves, Limbaugh has called abortion rights activists “feminazis”, told an African-American caller to “take that bone out of your nose,” referred to prisoner abuse at Abu Ghraib as “blow[ing] some steam off, ” and declared that “what’s good for Al Qaeda is good for the Democratic Party.”
Limbaugh accused Michael J. Fox, actor and Parkinson’s Disease victim, of deliberately going off of his meds to appear on camera with exaggerated symptoms of his disease for dramatic effect.  Limbaugh even goes so far as to accuse Fox of faking his symptoms all together.
“I stated when I saw the ad, I was commenting to you about it, that he was either off the medication or he was acting.  He is an actor, after all.”

On a personal level, Limbaugh is an expert on family values, gleamed from his 3 marriages.  Limbaugh was criticized for having condemned drug users and mocking claims of rehabilitation before his own drug problems were revealed

June 29, 3:08 pm | [comment link]
28. Sarah1 wrote:

RE: “And God would be just in any calamity that he brought upon us.”

He would be just.  And He would be just in any calamity that he brought upon me, as well.

Thankfully, we don’t always get justice.

RE: “When the dirty bomb hits L.A., MacArthur thinks it will be because of Lesbians (I’m not kidding), and so does James Dobson.”

No, they don’t.  You are not telling the truth.  I actually listen to “Kaiser Dobson the Hatemonger” and I have NEVER heard him say anything close to that.

RE: “You know a society has been abandoned by God when it celebrates lesbian sex.”

If that’s a quote by Dobson [doubtful, since this is a progressive paraphrasing someone he hates], then I disagree.  I know a society has itself abandoned God, if it “celebrates lesbian sex”.

Like I said—when progressive Episcopalians say “hate” I think “love”.  Progressives say “love” I think “hate”.

Two gospels.  One church.  Not going to last.

June 29, 3:17 pm | [comment link]
29. bob carlton wrote:

# 26

yes I was - kaiser, the German title meaning “Emperor”

bill buckley is fond of referring to Dobson, the most influential right-wing Christian leader in the country & a staunch Dominionist, as the Kaiser

June 29, 3:18 pm | [comment link]
30. libraryjim wrote:

Bob, those are all ‘hear-say’ statements. I was listening to Rush the day he made the statements about Michael J. Fox and the Missouri ad.  He said nothing remotely like what was reported. In fact, he had a 45 minute report on the subject.  The news media took a 30 second bite and called it the substance of what he’d said.  It wasn’t.
I’ve also heard him on MANY occasions talking about Abu Ghrab.  His blowing off steam comment was a joke, followed by a serious monologue about why it needed to be both taken seriously and looked at as an exception—not as an example of how the U.S. treats prisoners in general.
Again, you need to listen TO him instead of what is said ABOUT him.  Isn’t that what you say we have to do with liberals and reappraisers?

As to the Peace prize nomination:
Rush Limbaugh Nominated For Nobel Peace Prize
February 2, 2007 12:32 p.m. EST
Julie Farby - All Headline News Staff Writer

Leesburg, VA (AHN)  - Nationally syndicated conservative radio talk host Rush Limbaugh has been nominated for the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize by Landmark Legal Foundation-the leading conservative public interest law firm in the country.

According to Landmark President Mark R. Levin, the firm decided to nominate Limbaugh, who also serves as a member of Landmark’s Board of Advisors, for his “nearly two decades of tireless efforts to promote liberty, equality and opportunity for all humankind, regardless of race, creed, economic stratum or national origin. These are the only real cornerstones of just and lasting peace throughout the world.”

Rush Limbaugh, whose daily radio show is heard by more than 20 million people on more than 600 radio stations in the United States and around the world, spurred Levin to nominate the conservative icon for the Nobel Peace Prize.

In his letter to the Nobel Committee, Levin writes, “Rush Limbaugh is the foremost advocate for freedom and democracy in the world today. Everyday he gives voice to the values of democratic governance, individual opportunity and the just, equal application of the rule of law - and it is fitting that the Nobel Committee recognize the power of these ideals to build a truly peaceful world for future generations.”

The winner will be announced in mid-October, with the award presented on the Dec. 10th anniversary of its founder, Swedish businessman Alfred Nobel. Also nominated for the award is former Vice President and 2000 Presidential candidate Al Gore for his work bringing worldwide attention to the dangers of human-induced greenhouse gases and global warming patterns.

June 29, 3:21 pm | [comment link]
31. bob carlton wrote:

sarah, i do not hate dobson - I fear him and he makes me sad

having spent a great deal of time colorado springs and knowing many people who have been hurt by working with FoF,  it is tragic that Dobson is still viewed by so many as an authority on loving parenting

June 29, 3:24 pm | [comment link]
32. Sarah1 wrote:

RE: “Michael J. Fox, actor and Parkinson’s Disease victim, of deliberately going off of his meds to appear on camera with exaggerated symptoms of his disease for dramatic effect.”

Uh, Bob?  Don’t you remember that Fox claimed that he sometimes did delay medicating before he went on shows???????

RE: “Limbaugh has called abortion rights activists “feminazis” . . .”

LOL.  Actually he calls a whole lot of other folks “feminazis” too.  Good for him!! 

RE: ““what’s good for Al Qaeda is good for the Democratic Party.”

Actually he’s said even more than that—he’s said that defeat of America is “good for the Democratic Party”—I agree with that statement, and it doesn’t even have to be a negative statement either.  He’s pointing out, accurately, what the party of the Democrats needs to improve and increase power.  He’s right.

RE: “Limbaugh is an expert on family values, gleamed [sic] from his 3 marriages.  Limbaugh was criticized for having condemned drug users . . . “

Pretty sickening about his three marriages—the guy shouldn’t be married.  What that has to do with his highly accurate political analysis I don’t know.  I’ll certainly continue to listen to sinners—hopefully he won’t ask the Episcopal church to create a blessing for continued divorces.

And Limbaugh still condemns drug users.  As he ought to.  Just because one fails doesn’t mean one should—like so many progressives do—suddenly decide to redefine sin.

The other “quotes” I don’t know about.  Maybe you should go back to that web site and get some more.  ; > )

But I recommend actually forcing yourself to listen to him for consistently.

I enjoy the heck out of him.  And I don’t particularly care what a progressive Episcopalian thinks about him.

June 29, 3:25 pm | [comment link]
33. libraryjim wrote:

In fact, he had a 45 minute report on the subject. 

and then spent two DAYS talking about how the media reports got it wrong!

June 29, 3:27 pm | [comment link]
34. Sarah1 wrote:

RE: “it is tragic that Dobson is still viewed by so many as an authority on loving parenting . . . “

For progressives, yes—it is tragic.  ; > )

Again—you say tragic, I think comic.

June 29, 3:27 pm | [comment link]
35. bob carlton wrote:

landmark legal - again, thanks for the laughter libraryjim

landmark is headed by Mark Levin, who Limbaugh named head of his (Limbaugh’s) “legal division.”  funded heavily by scaife & ExxonMobil - viewed even by conservative legal groups like the federalist society as a joke and an embrassment

June 29, 3:30 pm | [comment link]
36. bob carlton wrote:


if you have the chance to speak with someone with Parkinson’s, you’ll find that they are very aware of when to time their medication so they can speak or interact with others

here’s an irony for you - I regularly listen to dobson, limbaugh, hannity - even savage.  for me, it is a responsibility, like watching shows to make sure they are ok for my kids, or monitoring their Internet access to dangerous or hateful sites

June 29, 3:34 pm | [comment link]
37. libraryjim wrote:

Doesn’t matter—he was nominated, and the nomination was accepted.

June 29, 3:34 pm | [comment link]
38. libraryjim wrote:

Links to what Rush REALLY said about Michael J. Fox on the show:

the first is a collection of links on the subject:

the second is a transcript of Rush castigating the media for taking him out of context:

June 29, 3:40 pm | [comment link]
39. libraryjim wrote:

sorry about the long links. :(


June 29, 3:47 pm | [comment link]
40. Sarah1 wrote:

From Michael J. Fox’s “Lucky Man”:

“Snippets of my testimony were featured on several of the nightly news broadcasts. One line in particular from my prepared statement got a lot of play: “In my forties, I can expect challenges most people wouldn’t face until their seventies and eighties, if ever. But with your help, if we all do everything we can to eradicate this disease, when I’m in my fifties I’ll be dancing at my children’s weddings.” I had made a deliberate choice to appear before the subcommittee without medication. It seemed to me that this occasion demanded that my testimony about the effects of the disease, and the urgency we as a community were feeling, be seen as well as heard. For people who had never observed me in this kind of shape, the transformation must have been startling.”

June 29, 4:13 pm | [comment link]
41. The_Elves wrote:

This thread is way way off topic.  But it’s Friday afternoon, we’ll let it continue as a free-for-all, I guess.

June 29, 4:19 pm | [comment link]
42. libraryjim wrote:

Thanks for the ‘fix’. 
Actually, I hesitated to go ‘off topic’ but since the thread was so far down the list, I doubted anyone would notice! LOL ‘guess I was wrong. smile

Hey we elves ALWAYS notice! (well most of the time wink )  And yes, the fact that this is an older entry did influence our decision not to intervene when it went off-topic.  Figured most who had something to say on the topic had already chimed in, so why not let a lively, albeit off-topic, conversation continue among a few folks.  Enjoy.

June 29, 4:30 pm | [comment link]
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