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When asked about figures released by the Pew Hispanic Center that demonstrated 14% of the nation’s construction workers are illegal aliens, Harry Reid responded, “That may be some place, but it’s not here in Nevada.” Reid is right. The number is much higher in Nevada. According to the same report, Nevada has the highest level of illegal aliens in the workforce at 12.2%—2.3% higher than the next highest state.
When asked to justify why he blocked Senator Jeff Session’s amendment to require government contracted construction workers to use E-verify to prevent the hiring of illegal aliens with taxpayer money, he replied: “That’s the reason we need to do comprehensive immigration reform. We cannot do it piecemeal.”
In other words: he refuses to enforce our immigration laws unless we pass amnesty.
Earlier in the year, Reid wrote a detailed outline with Senators Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Robert Menendez (D-NJ) of what they wanted “comprehensive immigration reform” to look like.
It isn’t pretty. The bill will gut enforcement, voiding all state and local laws such as the one just passed in Arizona. It will also greatly increase legal immigration levels—adding at least 550,000 permanent work visas and 3.4 million permanent family visas.
It will grant amnesty to every single illegal alien present in this country the day it is passed. Besides rewarding the lawbreakers who are already here, this will encourage additional illegal immigration as the bill is debated. The bill even allows illegal aliens with multiple criminal convictions to receive amnesty.
Needless to say, this is not the type of immigration reform that Americans want.
Harry Reid did not always support amnesty. In 1993, he introduced the Immigration Stabilization Act, and he reintroduced it the following year.
Upon introducing the bill, Reid said:
Our borders have overflowed with illegal immigrants placing tremendous burdens on our criminal justice system, schools and social programs… Our federal wallet is stretched to the limit by illegal aliens getting welfare, food stamps, medical care and other benefits often without paying any taxes.
While “comprehensive immigration reform” is now used as a euphemism for amnesty, Reid’s office called the bill “the first and only comprehensive immigration reform bill in Congress.”
And comprehensive it was.
Reid’s bill would have ended giving birthright citizenship to the children of illegal aliens, increased border security, created new sanctions against illegal aliens and their employers, and barred illegal aliens from receiving government benefits. Additionally, the bill reduced legal immigrant admissions by 500,000 people a year. It achieved this by eliminating the visa lottery, limiting work visas to truly skilled immigrants with advanced degrees and extraordinary abilities, and limiting family reunification to children and spouses.
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