Senators John McCain and Ted Kennedy have introduced the "Open Borders, Open Wallets" bill, informally known as the "2005 Secure America and Orderly Immigration Act".
Do I really need to provide details, aren't the involvement of those two senators enough?
Anyway, their cohorts are Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-IL), Jeff Flake (R-AZ), and Jim Kolbe (R-AZ). This is a massive amnesty program that could lead to not only transforming the 10 to 20 million illegal aliens in the U.S. into citizens, but will most assuredly lead to millions more illegal aliens coming here to take advantage of this and future amnesties. As can be expected, Kennedy specifically denies that this is an "amnesty", but any difference between SAOIA and amnesty is purely semantic. Expect semantics - or, more properly, doublespeak - to be a major part of the debate on this bill.
...If recent history is an accurate guide, and I believe it is, this so-called guest worker notion would only encourage a new wave of illegal aliens and make America's uncontrolled and unacceptable immigration debacle even worse than it is now.
This legislation is a bad idea not only because it creates a transparent path to amnesty, but also because it would reduce work opportunities, depress wages, and lower worker protection for Americans. Further, it would be impossible to administer and even more unlikely to be enforced...
The National Restaurant Association's press release is here. It includes a statement from "Lee Culpepper, the Association's senior vice president of Government Affairs and Public Policy and Chairman of the National Immigration Forum." The page "Organizations Supporting Amnesty for Illegal Aliens" contains a 2002 quote from Culpepper, which sounds similar to something you've probably heard many times from a "conservative":
...we believe that our nation's immigration policy should not only secure our borders, but also match willing employers with willing employees...
In an interesting twist, the Laborers' International Union issued a statement favoring the bill, but moderately opposing its guest worker provisions:
"In light of abuses that have historically occurred with guest worker programs, we believe the provisions in this bill for H5A visas should be improved to ensure that workers have legal recourse against unscrupulous employers and so that U.S. workers are protected from employers whose sole purpose in hiring H5A visa holders is to undercut existing workplace standards," [Terence M. O'Sullivan, General President of the Laborers' Union] said.
"According to the preliminary information that we have, this initiative...supports substantive elements and distinct aspects of the migratory problem that reflect a serious interest and a political determination to adopt a balanced and integral focus on the treatment of the migratory issue and to tackle the issue of security from a wider context."
With friends like these, should we really trust anything from Kennedy or McCain?