The Hill reports that “Instead of pushing for comprehensive reform,” [some pro-immigration groups] “will focus on smaller proposals that could have more bipartisan support.”
“Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s plan to move energy legislation in July has cast a pall over the chances of comprehensive immigration reform.”
Energy legislation is, no doubt, more-significant than immigration legislation as the 111th Congress unfolds. Indeed, there may be no greater moral responsibility humanity has ever faced than the fight ensure the future of our human species on this planet.
However, it’s important to note two things about Harry Reid’s move away from comprehensive immigration reform in light of the mid-term elections coming up in November:
- Energy legislation connects lawmakers on both sides of the isle with some of the deepest-pocketed campaign contributors operating on Capitol Hill.
- Only the enforcement side of immigration reform connects lawmakers with the various unions, defense contractors, and homeland security contractors that can swell their campaign coffers in any significant way.
Regarding the second point, last week the president approved the deployment of 1,200 National Guardsmen to the border at an estimated cost of $500 million. Additionally, The Hill reports that “Predator B aerial drones, which have proved successful fighting insurgents in Afghanistan, were deployed this week along the border between Texas and Mexico.”
“It is estimated to cost between $20 million and $30 million to set up a Predator drone in Corpus Christi to focus on the Texas border.”
Note that our military escalation at the border comes at a time when “violent crimes reported in Arizona dropped by nearly 1,500 reported incidents between 2005 and 2008. Reported property crimes also fell, from about 287,000 reported incidents to 279,000 in the same period. These decreases are accentuated by the fact that Arizona’s population grew by 600,000 between 2005 and 2008.” (hat-tip: National Immigration Forum)
The implication here is twofold, and severe:
1. We are wasting money.
2. The militarization hysteria Senators John McCain and John Kyle have fomented may be baseless.
Do you live on or near the border? Is the situation a war zone, as many of our lawmakers would have us believe? How has the military buildup effected you? Help be our eyes and ears in the region in what is increasingly becoming a crisis obscured — an perhaps, created — by partisan politics.
Webmaster’s Note: The militarization of the border will become an increasingly salient topic especially in light of the fatal shooting of a Mexican teen by the U.S. Border Patrol. Democracy Now! had a pretty good segment about the shooting of 15-year-old Sergio Adrian Hernandez Huereka: