National Review's David Frum, like many conservatives, is open to discussing amnesty for illegals. Here's how he puts it:
I for one am absolutely open to considering an amnesty plan at any date after the FIFTH anniversary of the completion of border control measures, including an effective employment verification system.
I am open to an amnesty plan after the flow of new illegals has been halted and we have seen significant attrition from the existing illegal population.
I am open to amnesty after - and only after! - federal judges start assisting local law enforcement agencies that wish to enforce the law rather than forbidding them to do so.
I am open to amnesty after a US president demonstrates a willingness to respond with some modicum of respect to the immigration concerns of the American public - and is not looking for any transparent gimmick that will get him from here to the bill signing.
Hey, here's a thought: Why doesn't President Bush condemn the decision by federal judge Colleen McMahon to require the town of Mamoreneck, NY, to pay $550,000 to illegal aliens and create a center from which they may violate the immigration laws of the United States conveniently, publicly, and with impunity? If ever one legal case destroyed what little "confidence" remained in the seriousness of the US government on immigration, this was that case. And the president has said ... what exactly?
If we have learned anything from the hard experiences of the recent past it is that amnesty must be the last step in any intelligent program of immigration enforcement. When it is the first step, it rapidly becomes the only step - or rather, the first step to the next amnesty and the next after that.
We have learned, too, that the political leadership in Washington wants a radically different outcome to this immigration debate from that desired by the large majority of the American people.
Confidence? Well in the words of an expert on the subject (President Bush):
"Fool me once, shame on - shame on you. Fool me - you can't get fooled again."
Amnesty for illegals is not something most people reject out of hand, but they do reject an amnesty that doesn't secure our borders and which puts illegals on a path to citizenship. There's no reason why the American taxpayer should be saddled with the enormous expense that illegal immigrants will impose on our nation if they are entitled to the benefits of citizens. Indeed, it has been estimated by some to be in the hundreds of billions of dollars a year.
Politicians are learning that the times have changed. No longer can they do whatever they please without the American people knowing about it. With talk radio and the blogosphere they're under a magnifying glass and they don't like it. Too bad.RLC