20 Loopholes in the Senate Immigration Bill

Press Release of Senator Sessions

Sen. Sessions Releases List of 20 Loopholes in the Senate Immigration Bill

Monday, June 4, 2007
WASHINGTON – U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) released a list of 20 loopholes in the comprehensive immigration bill today which reveals that the bill is fatally flawed and will not establish a functioning immigration system in the future.

The list of loopholes includes flaws effecting border security, chain-migration and assimilation policies.  The list exposes the lack of serious attention given to ensuring that the legislation fixes America’s failed immigration system. 

“I am deeply concerned about the numerous loopholes we have found in this legislation. They are more than technical errors, but rather symptoms of a fundamentally flawed piece of legislation that stands no chance of actually fixing our broken immigration system,” Sessions said. “Many of the loopholes are indicative of a desire not to have the system work.”

For example, one loophole in the “enforcement trigger” fails to require the U.S. VISIT system – the biometric border check-in/check-out system established by Congress in 1996, but never implemented – to be fully functioning before new worker or amnesty programs begin. Without the system in place, the U.S. has no method of ensuring that workers and their families do not overstay their visas.

Below is a partial list of the 20 loopholes for the full list see

  •  Loophole 1 – Legal Status Before Enforcement: 

Amnesty benefits do not wait for the “enforcement trigger.”  After filing an application and waiting 24 hours, illegal aliens will receive full “probationary benefits,” complete with the ability to legally live and work in the U.S., travel outside of the U.S. and return, and their own social security card.  Astonishingly, if the trigger is never met and amnesty applications are therefore never “approved,” the probationary benefits granted to the illegal alien population never expire, and the new social security cards issued to the illegal alien population are not revoked.   [See pp. 1, 290-291, & 315].
 

  • Loophole 2 – U.S. VISIT Exit Not In Trigger:

The “enforcement trigger,” required to be met before the new temporary worker program begins, does not require that the exit portion of U.S. VISIT system – the biometric border check-in/check-out system first required by Congress in 1996 that is already well past its already postponed 2005 implementation due date – to be in place before new worker or amnesty programs begin.  Without the U.S. VISIT exit portion, the U.S. has no method to ensure that workers (or their visiting families) do not overstay their visas. Our current illegal population contains 4 to 5.5 million visa overstays, therefore, we know that the U.S. VISIT exit component is key to a successful new temporary worker program.  [See pp. 1-2].

  • Loophole 3 – Trigger Requires No More Agents, Beds, or Fencing Than Current Law:

The “enforcement trigger” does not require the Department of Homeland Security to have detention space sufficient to end “catch and release” at the border and in the interior.  Even after the adoption of amendment 1172, the trigger merely requires the addition of 4,000 detention beds, bringing DHS to a 31,500 bed capacity.  This is far short of the 43,000 beds required under current law to be in place by the end of 2007, or the additional 20,000 beds required later in the bill.  Additionally, the bill establishes a “catch, pay, and release” program.  This policy will benefit illegal aliens from countries other than Mexico that are caught at the border, then can post a $5,000 bond, be released and never show up for deportation hearings. Annual failure to appear rates for 2005 and 2006, caused in part by lack of detention space, doubled the 2004 rate (106,000 – 110,000 compared with 54,000).  Claims that the bill “expands fencing” are inaccurate.  The bill only requires 370 miles of fencing to be completed, while current law already mandates that more than 700 miles be constructed [See pp. 1-2, & 10-11, and EOIR’s FY2006 Statistical Yearbook, p. H2, and The Secure Fence Act of 2004].

  • Loophole 4 — Three Additional Years Worth of Illegal Aliens Granted Status, Treated Preferentially To Legal Filers:

Aliens who broke into the country illegally a mere 5 months ago, are treated better than foreign nationals who legally applied to come to the U.S. more than two years ago.  Aliens who can prove they were illegally in the U.S. on January 1, 2007, are immediately eligible to apply from inside the U.S. for amnesty benefits, while foreign nationals that filed applications to come to the U.S. after May 1, 2005 must start the application process over again from their home countries.  Last year’s bill required illegal aliens to have been here before January 7, 2004 to qualify for permanent legal status.  [See pp. 263, 282, & 306].

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SENATE DEBATES IMMIGRATION DEAL (will vote on it before Memorial Day)

SENATE DEBATES IMMIGRATION DEAL

Do you support or oppose the negotiated deal to address the illegal immigrant situation. Which of the provisions listed by the Associated Press below do you agree with? Which do you oppose. Tell Congress and the President your views as there will be a vote before Memorial Day.

CURRENT ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS

  • They could come forward immediately and receive probationary legal status.
  • Bill creates a four-year, renewable “Z” visa for those present within the U.S. unlawfully before Jan. 1, 2007.
  • Undocumented immigrants may adjust status to lawful permanent residence once they pay $5,000 in fees and fines and their head of household returns to their home country.
  • People under age 30 who were brought to the U.S. as minors could receive their green cards after three years, rather than eight.
  • Undocumented farmworkers who can demonstrate they have worked 150 hours or three years in agriculture can apply for green cards.
  • No green cards for “Z” visa holders can be processed until “triggers” for border security and workplace enforcement have been met, estimated to take 18 months. Processing of green cards for holders of “Z” visas would begin after clearing an existing backlog, which is expected to take eight years.

BORDER SECURITY

  • Hire 18,000 new border patrol agents.
  • Erect 200 miles of vehicle barriers and 370 miles of fencing along the U.S.-Mexico border.
  • Erect 70 ground-based radar and camera towers along the southern border.
  • Deploy four unmanned aerial vehicles and supporting systems.
  • End the program in which illegal immigrants are released upon apprehension.
  • Provide for detaining up to 27,500 aliens per day on an annual basis.
  • Use secure and effective identification tools to prevent unauthorized work.

WORKPLACE ENFORCEMENT

  • Require employers to electronically verify new employees to prove identity and work eligibility.
  • Increase penalties for unlawful hiring, employment and record keeping violations.

GUEST WORKERS (requires border security measures to be in place first)

  • Create a new temporary guest worker program with two-year “Y visas,” initially capped at 400,000 per year with annual adjustments based on market fluctuations
  • Workers could renew the Y visa up to three times, but would be required to return home for a year in between each time. Those bringing dependents could obtain only one, nonrenewable two-year visa.
  • Families could accompany guest workers only if they could show proof of medical insurance and demonstrate that their wages were 150 percent above the poverty level.

FUTURE IMMIGRANTS

  • Spouses and minor children of U.S. citizens and permanent residents would be eligible for green cards based purely on their family connections, but other relatives such as adult children and siblings would not.
  • 380,000 visas a year would be awarded based on a point system, with about 50 percent based on employment criteria, 25 percent based on education, 15 percent on English proficiency and 10 percent on family connections.
  • Apply new limits to U.S. citizens seeking to bring foreign-born parents into the country.
  • Visas for parents of U.S. citizens would be capped annually at 40,000 and those for spouses and children at 87,000.

There is a lot of controversy regarding this subject so if you wish to voice your opinion here is a chance by clicking here and follow the instructions by entering either “support” or “oppose” in the subject and the message body.

Tip snares alleged child molester on FBI top 10 list (another one off the street)

POSTED: 12:57 p.m. EDT, May 13, 2007

vert1143goldbergfbi.jpgLOS ANGELES, California (CNN) — A tip from a Canadian resident ended Richard Steve Goldberg’s stint on the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted Fugitives list, and the alleged child molester is now awaiting extradition, the bureau said.

According to the Web site for the television show, “America’s Most Wanted,” Goldberg had been seeing a nonprofit counselor under the alias Terry Wayne Kearns. He allegedly told the counselor he was an American fugitive, but the charges against him were “trumped up,” the Web site said.

The counselor told a friend, who found Goldberg on the FBI Web site, according to “America’s Most Wanted.”

The 61-year-old former engineer had been on the run for six years after he was charged in 2001 with producing child pornography, two counts of possessing child pornography and six counts of performing lewd acts on a child, the FBI said. He also faces unlawful flight charges.

Authorities in Long Beach, California, say Goldberg engaged in sexual acts with girls younger than 10 for five months in 2001. Authorities also allege they found images of the sex acts on Goldberg’s computer, a federal crime.

“Goldberg gained the trust of [neighborhood] parents and then befriended their children. He entertained the girls by allowing them to play with his pets, watch television and use his computer to play games. Some of these girls also took short trips with him,” according to the June 2002 FBI news release announcing Goldberg’s inclusion on the most-wanted list.

The president of a gun club in Long Beach, California, Goldberg was considered armed and dangerous, according to the FBI.

Goldberg was captured in Montreal, Quebec, early Saturday after the tip from Canada, said Long Beach Police Chief Anthony Batts and J. Stephen Tidwell, assistant FBI director in Los Angeles.

Royal Canadian Mounted Police and the Montreal Police Service arrested Goldberg without incident for violating Canadian immigration laws, the statement said.

Canadian authorities are holding Goldberg on the immigration violation. He is scheduled to be in court Monday.

Goldberg is expected to be extradited to the United States to face the California and federal charges, Tidwell and Batts said.

A reward of up to $100,000 had been offered for information leading directly to Goldberg’s arrest. The FBI news release did not mention the reward.

Information source: CNN.com

Torn From Parents, a Top Speller Vents His Anger

This is a two part story as it originates in May of 2006 to the current article.  To post both articles in their entirety would have been too long, however I did include a snippet of the original at the bottom of this current one for those who are interested to follow the story from beginning. 

To me, I just don’t understand the process as this family was honest and followed the correct procedure for applying for political asylum yet was denied.  Would they be here today if they had not followed the legal route?? 

By KIRK JOHNSON
Published: May 6, 2007

Kunal Sah and parentsGREEN RIVER, Utah — Great spellers come in all types, from egotistical showoffs to loners who find sanctuary in the forest of words.

Kunal Sah, a 13-year-old eighth-grader, is an angry speller. He lives with his uncle and aunt at the Ramada Limited Motel in this tough former railroad town in eastern Utah. Kunal is making himself into a great speller by way of unhappiness and the immense pressure he feels to reunite his family, which was blown across two continents when his parents were sent back to India last year after being denied political asylum.

He said he cried every day after his parents left, then as the spelling bee season started and he began winning — ultimately reaching the regional competition and becoming one of three students from Utah who will be going to Washington at the end of this month for the Scripps National Spelling Bee — he began to put his frustration into words. Capturing the spotlight at the bee, he said, could draw attention to his parents’ case.

The Indian news media have already taken notice. An article in March in The Indian Express, an English-language daily newspaper, tried to capture the family’s mix of pride and pain under the headline: “Spelling bee whiz in U.S. motel room, parents in Bihar Village.”

“What I want to do is win the nationals, and, if I do, then there is a chance that my mom and dad will have a better chance of coming back,” Kunal said, sitting on his bed in a room stuffed to the ceiling with sprachgefühl, a word he was stumped by in a spelling bee last year. It means things that are linguistically appropriate or intuitive. Everything in Kunal’s room, from his dictionaries to his spelling trophies, is linguistically appropriate. “The anger is pushing me,” he said. “The anger is just telling me that yes, this year I have to win.”

An immigrationlawyer working on the Sahs’ behalf, Steven R. Lawrence Jr., said he believed the Sahs might yet be able to return, perhaps on a visa for people who own businesses in the United States. But their case is exceedingly complicated and even Mr. Lawrence acknowledges that a reunion in America is not likely anytime soon.

Mr. Sah, who was born in India, came to the United States in 1990 and shortly before his entry visa expired the next year he applied for political asylum, saying that if he was forced to return to his home province in southeastern India he would be targeted by Muslims because of his involvement in a group called Vishwa Hindu Parishad, which he described as committed to Hindu nationalism.

Mr. Sah acknowledged in his application that he had been active in organizing a campaign against Babri Mosque, in northern India, because it was “built on our sacred land” and that he “actively participated” in riots intended to demolish it.

In 1992, after Mr. Sah had immigrated to the United States, Hindu extremists destroyed the mosque.

In denying him haven, immigration officials noted that Mr. Sah “had participated in the persecution of non-Hindus and thus was ineligible for asylum.”

The town of Green River played a role in the making of Kunal the speller. He grew up here, three hours southeast of Salt Lake City, after his family came in 1997 from California, where he was born, an American citizen. For the only boy of Indian heritage in a town of about 900 people, that might be lonely enough. But Kanhai and Sarita Sah were strivers, bent on upward mobility, willing to work harder than the competition, trading up to a larger motel, the Ramada, after five years in town.

Some people admitted that they did not like Kanhai, or Ken, as he was known, although they say they admire the son’s accomplishments.

“I really believe it was just the personality people didn’t like,” Amy Wilmarth, the manager of the Green River Coffee Company, said of Mr. Sah. “He probably has quite a bit of arrogance, along with rudeness.”

On a busy summer night, there may be 2,000 travelers in Green River’s 600-odd rooms. Most are only stopping long enough to catch up on sleep, food and fuel. The town sits midway between Denver and Las Vegas, with few lodging choices for 100 miles in any direction.

And every now and then, people here say, some of those visitors do not like seeing a dark-skinned face at the Ramada. So Kunal’s family members rarely sit at the front desk, only coming out when the front bell is pushed. By the time someone has come that far, they say, and perhaps smelled the Indian cooking, they are more likely to stay.

Other motel operators are well aware that some travelers are racist or anti-immigrant. “A lot of them will come down to me because they won’t stay there,” said Cynthia Powell, manager of the Rodeway Inn.

Kunal’s uncle, Dharm Chandra Prasad, who came to Utah three years ago after receiving a degree in business in England, said that jealousy over the family’s success, combined with the ethnic and cultural differences — much of the town is Mormon — created resentment.

“When you will go up, everybody will try to pull your leg down,” Mr. Prasad said at the motel on a recent morning. He said his brother was pressed to become a Mormon. “He said, Why we should change our religion?” Mr. Prasad said. “The god is one, same god yours, you call Jesus, we call a different word.”

What makes everything go behind the Ramada’s walls, and inside Kunal, is a work ethic.

Sitting on the couch in the living room of the apartment he shares with his uncle and his aunt, Jyothie, Kunal pointed across the room to the sneakers he was given as a reward from his parents. The kind of sneakers that lots of American children get just for asking. If he could work through 5,000 words in one day, his father promised, he would get the shoes. Kunal delivered in 16 hours.

Wherever the burning desire came from, it has manifested itself in the embrace of language. There are friendly words, Kunal said, and stranded, orphan sorts of words, which are the hardest because they lack linguistic relatives that can provide clues to their spelling patterns.

Last year, Kunal made a friend at his first national spelling bee, where he was eliminated early on. The friend is Yeeva Cheng, 14, a champion speller from Cherryville, N.C. The two study over the Internet, lobbing pronunciations back and forth.

One recent night they kept at it until 4 a.m., and Kunal smiled when he told the story. No anger now, just a 13-year-old like any other.

Information source: The New York Times

Forced to leave: Sah family from Green River told to return to India by July 1, 2006

By PATSY STODDARD
Editor – May 16, 2006

Below is a snippet from the original article published on May 26, 2006 in which Ken Sah tells his story of how he came to America and his dreams and the process he endured in having his dreams shattered. 

You can read the full story at  “Emery County Progress”

“Ken Sah is from the country of India and has been in America for 16 years. He came to the United States as a student in 1990. He studied and graduated with a degree in aviation-engineering from Oakland, Calif.

Sah said, I looked at America as the land of opportunity. I liked it here. I liked the history of the country. I decided to stay. I applied for an asylum in 1991 while still in college. I was already married to my wife Sarita, but there were those that said if I married an American I could stay. But, I couldn’t do that because I was already married. It took 10 years before I had a court hearing. What can you do? In 10 years time I had to work and earn a living. We worked hard night and day until I had $100,000 saved to put on a down payment on a motel in Green River”