The Tar Pit

Friday, November 11, 2005

Dick Morris gets silly about immigration reform

Dick Morris makes some decidedly unserious recommendations to President Bush in Get serious about immigration reform. In addition to the President (finally) ramping up and enforcing our immigration laws, Morris says that...

Bush, searching for a way to recapture the national agenda, needs to seize this issue and make it his own. A full and reasoned program will galvanize national support and unite the nation behind tough measures to enforce our laws and maximize opportunities for those who already live here legally.


Establish a legal guest-worker program. Nobody can deny the manifest need of Americans - both individuals and businesses - for the work that currently illegal immigrants provide. They would not be coming if they did not have access to jobs, and there would be no work if there were no demand.

Bush's current program for legal guest workers is a good one and should be adopted in the context of broader immigration reform. But the plan should include a track to citizenship for these workers, providing certain criteria - such as English fluency, English literacy and no arrest record - to let them earn the right to become American citizens.

A guest-worker program will end the leper colony within our borders of disenfranchised, invisible illegals who have no rights and no responsibilities.

Morris can't be serious. The President's current proposal would legalize illegals if, in addition to being an illegal, they could show that they illegally took employment here. Most Americans know that legalizing illegals is amnesty, as much as Beltway-types might imagine otherwise. There are two reasons the President has been unable to make the immigration issue his own: America doesn't want another amnesty for illegals, and the President has been less than diligent in seeking the resources necessary to enforce the immigration laws that are currently on the books.

There is a fundamental immorality to guest worker amnesties: they reward illegals at the expense of potential guest workers who haven't broken our laws. Illegals would be legalized because they've cheated to get jobs for which non-illegals would never be able to compete.

Morris obviously hasn't read the Bush Amnesty, because it already has provisions for illegals to become American citizens:

Some temporary workers will make the decision to pursue American citizenship. Those who make this choice will be allowed to apply in the normal way.They will not be given unfair advantage over people who have followed legal procedures from the start. I oppose amnesty, placing undocumented workers on the automatic path to citizenship. Granting amnesty encourages the violation of our laws, and perpetuates illegal immigration. America is a welcoming country, but citizenship must not be the automatic reward for violating the laws of America. (Applause.)

About the only honest thing the President said here is that his plan would allow legalized illegals to apply for citizenship down the road. Amnesty isn't defined by an "automatic path to citizenship;" the Reagan Amnesty had no "automatic path" either.

The President's plan would clearly reward illegals at the expense of those who haven't broken our laws. Compounding this injustice, giving them amnesty in a guest worker program carries over to the citizenship, because they'll already be in line before those who haven't cheated are legally admitted.

To legalize illegals is to tell hard-working, family-centered applicants who play by the rules that they are chumps. Rewarding illegals doesn't honor hard work or family values, it honors cheating.

Also blogging on this nonsense from Dick Morris are Lonewacko, A Certain Slant of Light, and Gus Van Horn.