Immigration Reform the Bush Administration Term Paper

Excerpt from Term Paper :

These groups believe that the program is giving blanket amnesty and encouraging more illegal immigration.

President Bush denies that the program promotes amnesty. "I oppose amnesty, placing undocumented workers on the automatic path to citizenship," he said (FOX, 2004). "Granting amnesty encourages violation of our laws and perpetuates illegal immigration. America is a welcoming country, but citizenship must not be the automatic reward for violating the laws of America."

While the Constitution at first glance seems to oppose immigration reform, in fact it facilitates reform and even mandates it (Masugi, 2005). The Constitution states that all persons be counted, and illegal immigrants count as persons. This idea is supported by the example of the great American dilemma in which "other persons" -slaves - were counted as three-fifths of persons, therefore increasing the power of the slave states in the House of Representatives. Slavery, one of the biggest tragedies of American history, warns of the injustice of illegal immigration. In today's day and age, American companies welcome the wealth brought about by cheap labor to adherence to self-government. For these reasons, it appears that the Constitution supports immigration reform.

In 1907, Theodore Roosevelt supported immigration (Masugi, 2005): "In the first place we should insist that if the immigrant who comes here in good faith becomes an American and assimilates himself to us, he shall be treated on an exact equality with everyone else, for it is an outrage to discriminate against any such man because of creed, or birthplace, or origin." The framers of the Constitution believed that immigrants should be supported as long as they adopt American civic values and the American heritage as their own.

While both sides of this debate have valid points, my opinion is that current immigration laws fail to adequately address immigration problems. This creates problems for immigrants and their families, who are forced to live "underground." National security is also a priority, and it is important that all people living in the U.S. are accounted for and protected by basic rights and protections offered by the Constitution.

References

FOX News. (January 7, 2004). Bush Calls for Overhaul of U.S. Immigration System. Retrieved from the Internet at http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,107644,00.html.

Masugi, Ken. (October 31, 2005). Prop. 77's immigration angle: Illegal immigrants distort the value of voters in districts where they live.

Freedom Communications, Inc.

The White House. (January, 2004). Fact Sheet: Fair and Secure Immigration Reform. Retrieved from the Internet at http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2004/01/20040107-1.html.

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