The Associated Press reports today that President Barack Obama's push to grant amnesty to illegal immigrants could cost $585 million. The plan would require creating several hundred more federal government positions just to process the large number of requests from illegal immigrants. While some of the cost would be offset by a $465 "paperwork fee", this is still a huge undertaking by the federal government.
There are several requirements under the new program; "Under the new program, which President Barack Obama announced last month, eligible immigrants must have arrived in the U.S. before their 16th birthday, are 30 or younger, have been living here at least five years, are in school or graduated or served in the military. They also must not have a criminal record or otherwise pose a safety threat. They can apply to stay in the country and be granted a work permit for two years, but they would not be granted citizenship." ~Associate Press
Some of these regulations will be impossible to actually enforce. While it may be easy to prove American criminal records, their age, school and military status, proving how long an illegal immigrant has been here or when they arrived will be nearly impossible. Since illegal immigrants don't have social security numbers, work under the table, and use cash to pay rent, it can be hard to prove when they arrived in the United States.
While many democrats have been pushing for amnesty for sometime, there are still people who strongly oppose this move. People who oppose the amnesty policy cite reasons such as the fact they are already criminals for illegally crossing the border, the weak economy not providing enough jobs for current citizens, and even wondering why these immigrants get special treatment when others have gone through the full process to earn citizenship. Some will call this a "race" issue, but there are people of all ethnicity's, including Hispanics, that oppose this new program.
It can be understandable why people want to come to the United States, and easy to feel sympathy for those who lived in the conditions of some of the countries illegal immigrants come from, but is granting amnesty the answer to these problems? Several polls show that this kind of program is not what the majority of Americans want. In a Rasmussen poll 63% said border control was more important than legalizing the immigrants, and only 27% put amnesty ahead of border security. Another poll shows that 67% of voters believe that immigration laws should be enforced. A third poll even shows that 67% see illegal immigration as a strain on the federal budget with only 23% saying that it is not.
It seems safe to say, that at least according to the data, Americans do not want to simply grant amnesty to illegal immigrants. Many Americans understand that by simply allowing people to cross our border is a threat to national security. With the horrors of the cartels in Mexico spilling onto US soil, and the threat of terrorism ever present, border security is something that Americans find to be important. There are many ways to earn citizenship, but breaking the law should not be considered one of them. We should feel for the children involved that have no say, but that does not excuse the actions of the parents.
Associated Press article: http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/ap-exclusive-internal-document-sh...
Immigration facts: http://www.fairus.org/facts/illegal-immigration-and-amnesty-polls