Hendricks County Flyer, Avon, IN

Commentary

May 13, 2013

A majority leader in training

(Continued)

The bill stipulates that we will establish a 90 percent effectiveness rate at catching people trying to cross the border in five years. If that goal isn’t achieved, then a bipartisan border commission swoops in to take charge and come up with its own report and recommendations. And if the commission fails to produce these recommendations within 180 days, well then, the bill demands that the Department of Homeland Security come up with yet another border-security plan!

Schumer’s genius is to have placated Rubio not just with promises, but with new versions of old promises. Rubio touts the bill’s mandate for the creation of an exit-entry tracking system, a key piece of the puzzle of controlling who comes here. Congress first mandated the creation of such a system in 1996.

It’s one thing for Congress to make earnest assurances about wonderful things that will occur in the future. It’s quite another for them to occur. In 2001, Congress congratulated itself for passing the No Child Left Behind Act that quite sincerely said all students — yes, all students — would achieve proficiency in reading and mathematics by the 2013-14 school year.

If the Gang of Eight bill becomes law, a natural political dynamic will take over. Denying any undocumented immigrant newly legal status will seem arbitrary and unfair, and so the notionally tough requirements for legal status will be only loosely applied. Pro-amnesty advocacy groups and the business lobby will work to undermine enforcement in the courts and in Congress. And the new argument against Republicans will become that they are alienating Latino voters by insisting on an inexcusably drawn-out process for formerly undocumented immigrants to get citizenship (and become voters).

No doubt, Chuck Schumer has already thought all this through. That’s why he’s Chuck Schumer.

(c) 2013 by King Features Syndicate

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