Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act of 2011: new amnesty push from Leahy, Menendez, Durbin, Reid, Schumer, Kerry, Gillibrand

Yesterday the U.S. Senators listed in the title introduced the Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act of 2011, this year's version of a major amnesty bill. Links to descriptions of the bill are here or see this or this.

1. The description of the bill sounds highly similar to other, failed amnesties, and this will probably suffer the same fate. However, just because it isn't overly likely to pass doesn't mean it shouldn't be opposed. How to do that below, and note that opposing the bill would serve other aims such as discrediting politicians who promote other, unrelated issues.

2. Those involved so far are Sens. Pat Leahy, Bob Menendez, Dick Durbin, Harry Reid, Charles Schumer, John Kerry, and Kirsten Gillibrand. See each of their names for background on them relating to immigration.

3. For the general downsides of comprehensive immigration reform no matter the specific details of the current bill, see that link. The CIRA2011 also includes the AgJobs bill and the anti-American DREAM Act. The latter would allow the illegal aliens covered by it to take college educations away from some U.S. citizens.

4. Opposing the bill should be easy, but recent experience shows otherwise. In December of last year, the DREAM Act failed but it also wasn't that strongly opposed. For instance, the teapartiers barely opposed it, and rightwing bloggers almost completely ignored it. The loudest possible opponents to amnesty are corrupt or incompetent. If the stars align for Leahy and friends, and if the likely opponents are distracted with some meaningless scandal or similar, who knows what might happen.

5. The easiest, most effective way to oppose the bill is to use the question authority plan to discredit those behind the bill. For instance, recruit a smart, experienced lawyer to go to a public appearance by Durbin and "cross-examine" him about the impacts of the DREAM Act on video. Or, have a lawyer "cross-examine" Menendez about how long it would take to do FBI-quality background checks on 10 million people, or about all the many other downsides of amnesty in general. See the bad questions posts for examples of what not to do, but what will probably happen. If you can't help organize an effort to have lawyers or similar question politicians, then at the least you can promote that plan and promote the use of tough questions rather than bad questions.