From the inside: The “abomination” of the Gang of Eight’s immigration bill
The proposed measure is poised to profoundly reorder our society, both economically and sociologically, and the Gang of Eight drops a bewilderingly complex 844-page bill with innumerable moving parts — a bill drafted behind closed doors on the rest of the Senate only 48 hours before the hearing. There was hardly time to absorb more than the title and preamble before the hearing, at a time when most of the nation and Congress were rightly occupied with the hunt for the surviving Boston Marathon bomber (indeed, the only other witness scheduled to testify was DHS secretary Janet Napolitano, who had to cancel due to the developments involving the imminent capture of the suspect).
My written testimony on the bill had to be submitted barely 24 hours after the bill was unveiled and less than 24 hours before the hearing itself. The hearing lasted two hours (in Washington, that’s quite short), with only one round of questioning by Senate Judiciary Committee members. After complaints about the limited hearing time, the committee hastily scheduled another hearing for today, this time involving 23 witnesses. A friend who will be testifying today tells me he was notified by the committee at the close of business Friday to appear this morning. He was still writing his testimony late last night. Obviously, the witnesses will be a blur, their testimonies will be general. No time for close questioning of the witnesses or engagement over the issues.
His conclusion is absolutely devastating:
Not to put too fine a point on it, but this process is an abomination. I’ve testified numerous times before the judiciary committee, including the confirmation hearings of the last four nominees to the Supreme Court. Never has the committee treated a matter of such magnitude so cavalierly. One member of the World’s Greatest Deliberative Body used his limited time on Friday to ask me just one urgent question — about my Wikipedia page.
Regardless of where you stand on the immigration debate, this should infuriate you. We Americans are being horribly served by this process.
Regardless of one’s views on the immigration bill itself – if you’ve had time to actually read and understand it – the points above are exactly correct. Senator Rubio ran against the establishment that created TARP and the stimulus and Obamacare…yet now he supports a process as non-transparent and convoluted.
Perhaps more importantly, the Senator is relying on straw man arguments to bolster his case. From A.J. Delgado at Mediaite:
According to Ralston, who attended the presser:
Rubio said he challenges opponents of the bill “to come up with an alternative. What’s their alternative? To leave things the way that they are? To round up 11 million people and send them back to the country of their birth. Then they should propose that.”
And there you have it: the argument against the non-existent opponent. Who among the immigration bill’s opponents has called for the rounding up and deportation of 11 million illegals? No one. So why does Rubio smear opponents with this unfair and untruthful charge? Conveniently, and not surprisingly, Rubio seeks to frame the issue in “You’re either with us or you’re in favor of rounding up and deporting 11 million illegals” terms, when one knows the senator is surely smart enough to know that is not the case. The truth is, there are a myriad of alternatives to this bill that do not include deportation, for instance:
1) We could simply limit the legalization to the DREAMers;
2) We could have a bill that provides border security and border enforcement before legalization;
3) We could have a bill that does not provide legalization to those who have already been deported…
Those are just three alternatives to the bill, out of dozens, that do not even remotely resemble round ups and deportations.
Here’s the thing: Tea Party activists understand that there is a wide variety of opinions and philosophies in politics. That’s why we’re involved – to sway public opinion and public policy. But without an open, transparent, and honest debate on the issues, the Washington establishment will simply continue to desecrate the Constitution and ruin the nation’s already-fragile fiscal and cultural foundations.