American Renaissance

Illegal Alien Amnesty is Top Priority for Senate Leaders

Kennedy, Craig Promise Amnesty Amendment on Every Senate Bill

Federation for American Immigration Reform, Jun. 15

Senators Edward Kennedy (D-MA) and Larry Craig (R-ID) have vowed to enact an amnesty program for millions of illegal aliens, even if it means holding every other piece of Senate legislation hostage to accomplish it. The two senior legislators have promised to attach their Agricultural Jobs, Opportunity, Benefits and Security Act (AgJobs) to every Senate bill for the remainder of the year. Their first target is the Defense Authorization bill now being debated in the Senate.

The AgJobs bill would allow virtually every illegal alien who has worked in agriculture in the U.S. to gain legal residence for themselves and their families. Based on the language of the legislation, and past experience, millions more people would likely gain legal residence fraudulently. Among those who fraudulently gained amnesty under a similar agricultural worker provision of a 1986 law were two Egyptian terrorists and New York City taxicab drivers-Mahmud and Mohammed Abouhalima-who later participated in the 1993 World Trade Center bombings.

“Of all the concerns of the American people — winning the war against terrorism, affordable health care, improving education, soaring energy costs — Senators Kennedy and Craig have decided that amnesty for millions of immigration law breakers is the nation’s top priority,” said Dan Stein, executive director of FAIR.

The 1986 agricultural amnesty provision, which legalized 1.3 million people, was riddled with fraud. The current AgJobs legislation contains even fewer safeguards against fraud and the threat of terrorism. News of the all-out Kennedy-Craig amnesty push comes just days ahead of the arrest yesterday of a Somali political asylum recipient charged with conspiring to blow up an Ohio shopping mall. “Government authorities couldn’t weed a terrorist out of a much smaller number of asylum applicants. What confidence would the American people have that they’ll be able to detect terrorists among millions of amnesty applicants?” Stein questioned.

“It is shameful that while our nation is at war, and American soldiers are dying every single day to defeat the terrorists who threaten our security, that two senior members of the United States Senate would be willing to hold up resources for them in order to gain amnesty for illegal aliens,” Stein said. “While our young men and women are off fighting terrorism around the world, Kennedy and Craig have pulled out all the stops to enact legislation that will make it easy — and likely — that terrorists will be able to gain legal residence in the U.S.

“Attaching an illegal alien amnesty to other important legislation is not only unseemly and a threat to homeland security, it is ultimately a way for Congress to do the bidding of special interests without ever having to accept responsibility for their actions,” Stein concluded.