At what cost?

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Senators have been inundated with calls, letters and e-mails from constituents vehemently opposed to President Bush's flawed immigration bill.

But as evidenced by Tuesday's 64-35 roll call vote to resume debate on the bill, a majority in the Senate still has not gotten the message.

Georgia's senators, Johnny Isakson and Saxby Chambliss, have rightly gauged the wishes of their state's citizens. So has South Carolina's Jim DeMint. All of them voted against resurrecting debate on this bill.

South Carolina senior senator Lindsey Graham, however, voted for it - and by doing so has repudiated the will of his Republican constituents.

If Graham can be drenched by waves of criticism and still not divorce himself from this immigration bill, what else could possibly get his attention? Flashing neon signs? Billboards? Skywriting? After all, there's no point in being subtle. Few things these days lack more subtlety than the nationwide mandate to scrap this wrongheaded immigration plan and engage in genuine, commonsense reform based on enforcing the laws we have.

What misguided senators should realize is the true scope of financial ruin that will come with the passage of this bill. The Heritage Foundation has conducted exhaustive research on what Americans can expect with Bush's so-called immigration reform, and the findings are positively chilling.

First, consider that low-skilled immigrants are expected to take in an average of $3 in government services and benefits for every $1 they would pay in taxes. That adds up to a net $89 billion burden to U.S. taxpayers every year.

Then take into account that the average low-skilled immigrant family gets $10,500 a year in means-tested welfare. Over a lifetime, that's about a half-million dollars. Per family.

And let's not split hairs here. The immigration bill in question clearly allows for amnesty. Bill supporters say it isn't amnesty in the purest sense of the word because it requires illegals to pay a fine and admit wrongdoing to obtain temporary legal status.

But what possible incentive would illegals have to get this status? They're already in this country, and apparently had no compunctions about breaking the law to get here. They already have what they wanted, and they don't mind being squatters. Any government hoop they would have to jump through to get any level of legal status likely would be viewed as a needless hassle.

So consider this calculation: Heritage projects that, when recipients reach retirement age, taxpayers' cost of amnesty alone will be $2.6 trillion. To put that in perspective, compare that number to $2.8 trillion - that's the total spending listed in President Bush's fiscal year 2007 budget.

The illegal immigration problem is more than a matter of people coming across the border and taking our jobs. This is about financial sanity. And the Senate's current ill-aimed attempt at badly needed immigration reform is far from it.

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patriciathomas
42
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patriciathomas 06/28/07 - 05:52 am
0
0
The letters and e-mails to

The letters and e-mails to the senators shouldn't stop until the vote on the bill is taken. Sen. Graham needs to read the excellent political cartoon today.

pofwe
5
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pofwe 06/28/07 - 06:21 am
0
0
I don't think Senator Graham

I don't think Senator Graham plans to run for Senator next time. He ain't stupid, yet he fails to listen to his constituants. He must think that we don't matter or he wants out anyway.

johnsmith
9
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johnsmith 06/28/07 - 07:49 am
0
0
Well, as I informed Senator

Well, as I informed Senator Graham in my email to him yesterday (funny how "immigration" was not an option on the menu of topics), I'm pleased that he let us know where he stands. It will give me great pleasure to commit time and funds to his primary opponent.

LaTwon
1
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LaTwon 06/28/07 - 08:00 am
0
0
and if we win this battle we

and if we win this battle we should take on the tax system next.

AlvKel7
0
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AlvKel7 06/28/07 - 08:02 am
0
0
You are upset at Senator

You are upset at Senator Graham,he is following the lead of President Bush, are you upset at him.

t of i
25
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t of i 06/28/07 - 09:08 am
0
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johnsmith, it is in the menu

johnsmith, it is in the menu of topics under "border control and immigration."

DrGunby68
1
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DrGunby68 06/28/07 - 09:44 am
0
0
Who picks all those peaches

Who picks all those peaches in GA & SC. I may be behind the times and a machine does it by now, but just asking?

ldsmith
0
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ldsmith 06/28/07 - 10:27 am
0
0
Yes, AlvKel7, many

Yes, AlvKel7, many conservatives are upset with President Bush on this issue and have not agreed on other issues as well. His nomination of Harriet Myers and his failure to reign in government spending are two that quickly come to mind. I'm personally not too keen on how cozy he has been with Mr. Kennedy from Massachusetts either. However, most of us admire his firm stance on the war on terror and are thankful for the tax cuts that have given us a thriving economy. We are also glad to have Justice Alito and Chief Justice Roberts serving on the Supreme Court. I do not know what President Bush is thinking on this one. Being the former governor of Texas, I would think he would have a different perspecitve on illegals. I do not regret voting for him; I am quite sure I would be much less pleased with the policies of Gore and Kerry.

johnsmith
9
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johnsmith 06/28/07 - 10:38 am
0
0
Even MORE upset with

Even MORE upset with President Bush than I am with Graham...he was supposed to uphold the rule of law. Then again, other than supreme court justices and the war on terror, I don't see eye to eye with this president on much of anything...

Carleton Duvall
6305
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Carleton Duvall 06/28/07 - 10:46 am
0
0
To the best of my knowledge,

To the best of my knowledge, Dr. Gumby, a machine has not been developed that is gentle enough to pick peaches. If you will drive to Trenton where there are a number of peach orchards you will see many itinerant workers( mostly Latinos) hand picking the crops

Carleton Duvall
6305
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Carleton Duvall 06/28/07 - 10:48 am
0
0
As a afterthought, I know of

As a afterthought, I know of no group that has been more abused than Itinerant workers because many of them are illegals and cannot protest these abuses to the authorities

DrGunby68
1
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DrGunby68 06/28/07 - 10:57 am
0
0
Thx Scoob...I don't like to

Thx Scoob...I don't like to "boil things down" to their fundamental premise, but I LOVE PEACHES. How much are they gonna cost when either one group ships the undocumented workers home or another group makes them legal and they have to receive "real" pay and benefits. What about my Vidalia onions? I like to eat and I would swear that my wife and I have seen our grocery bill go up 50 bucks a week this year. What is the solution. Will the conservatives agree to operate on the principle that the rising tide floats all boats, but some boats are a yachts at sea and some are dingys in that funky lake off Gordon Hwy. Capitalism requires a lower class. Admit that we exploit workers. Don't care what color they are or where they are from, we just do it.

Carleton Duvall
6305
Points
Carleton Duvall 06/28/07 - 11:04 am
0
0
I am not going to get into a

I am not going to get into a political debate with you, Dr. Gumby. You are much too learned for me. I just wanted to provide you with the info. you requested. I will make this one observation. You are correct, this country does abuse the weak and it is not make it right just because it makes our fruit cheaper.

ldsmith
0
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ldsmith 06/28/07 - 11:14 am
0
0
johnsmith, your areas of

johnsmith, your areas of agreement with this President are not minimal. They are two of the most important issues of our times.

jack
10
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jack 06/28/07 - 11:19 am
0
0
This "bill" (it ain't even in

This "bill" (it ain't even in legislative format) will force those peach growers spoken of here to increase hourly wages for these people, If higher wages were paid to Americans, I don't beleive hiring illegals would be necessary. Grahamnesty is gone next election if I and other South Carolinins wil see to it. I will vote for a conservative Democrat (if there is such a thing) before I vote for Grahamnesty again..

DrGunby68
1
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DrGunby68 06/28/07 - 11:33 am
0
0
But Scoob, what will I do.

But Scoob, what will I do. PT and Khannnnn !! and the other conservatives won't play with me. How dare I interject logic and reason into our political machine. I don't always agree with the Dems either. They do lots of inadvisable stuff also. My SC peaches are 3.00# here in NC. It's nuts...

Carleton Duvall
6305
Points
Carleton Duvall 06/28/07 - 11:40 am
0
0
Either pay the price, Dr

Either pay the price, Dr Gumby or eat cake. On a serious note I would like to point out that the price of peches this year is high because of the terrible freeze that we had the first week in April.

Carleton Duvall
6305
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Carleton Duvall 06/28/07 - 12:02 pm
0
0
Okay, DR Gumby, you want to

Okay, DR Gumby, you want to debate so I will start. My program for the illegals would be. (1) Secure the border with a fence even God couldn't get over (2) Give the illegals already in this country 90 days to register( 3) Set stiff penalties for hiring unregistered immigrants (4) Deport all immigrants who commit felonies after they serve their prison term.( 5) give illegals 1 year to be able to speak conversational English

DrGunby68
1
Points
DrGunby68 06/28/07 - 12:11 pm
0
0
Ok, we agree on all that

Ok, we agree on all that except number 1 & 5 in part. Put in provisions to make the learning mostly subsidized and make tamper proof documents that are linked to a real time tamper proof computer registration system. Bring our soldiers home and put them on the border and use some fencing (it really does make for good neighbors). There we go. A bipartisan bill that is better than what they're doing in Washington...problem solved...LOL...BTW I don't like cake.

shepster
0
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shepster 06/28/07 - 12:21 pm
0
0
DrGunby.., why SOME fencing?

DrGunby.., why SOME fencing? From where I sit, that doesn't make much sense. Building a COMPLETE wall is wrong or bad because....?

Carleton Duvall
6305
Points
Carleton Duvall 06/28/07 - 12:22 pm
0
0
You Dr Gumby, I don't care

You Dr Gumby, I don't care how we secure our border as long as it is done on a permanent basis. The problem that I see on putting our troops there is that it is not necessarily permanent. A wall is.
I agree with your tamper proof document idea. That would be a given. I do not agree with subsidizing their English education but that could be negotiable. I guess my main concern is to stop the flow. The ones here are here because we let them in. We need to accommodate the ones who are willing to assimilate into out culture as your and my ancestors did.

Carleton Duvall
6305
Points
Carleton Duvall 06/28/07 - 12:23 pm
0
0
And, oh, Dr Gumby ,I bet you

And, oh, Dr Gumby ,I bet you would love my rum cake.

shivas
2
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shivas 06/28/07 - 01:57 pm
0
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Failure of immigration reform

Failure of immigration reform is just another in a long-line of Republican boondoggles. The upcoming Democratic presidential victory will finally put us back on the right track.

johnsmith
9
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johnsmith 06/28/07 - 02:12 pm
0
0
ldsmith, I agree. Those are

ldsmith, I agree. Those are not minimal areas of disagreement, and since they involve actual survival, I held my nose and voted twice for Bush. I would *happily* have voted for Liebermann on either occasion (heck, if I'm going to vote for someone who will increase spending and promote the entitlement society, it might as well be someone who would be good at it and get credit for it!), but the democrats never gave me that option. I insist that both Gore and Kerry were actually jokes that the Democrats tried to play on us..."Hey, let's see if they'll vote for THIS guy!"

Carleton Duvall
6305
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Carleton Duvall 06/28/07 - 02:13 pm
0
0
This is not a partisan issue.

This is not a partisan issue. This is a home security issue. I don't see Democrats or Republicans taking it seriously. Look at who is supporting this bill. Members of both parties are led by Kennedy and Bush.

sconservative
61
Points
sconservative 06/28/07 - 02:20 pm
0
0
The liberals (mostly

The liberals (mostly Democrats and RINOs) are being modern-day Robin [robbing?] Hoods. They want to take from the rich and give to the poor and build a mini-socialist country with themselves in power. The reason they can is that Bill Gates has only 1 vote, and each of the millions of aliens (and recipients of transfer payments) will have 1 vote. I bet that one of the first documents they get will be a Voter Registration Card! The fact that it will help to bankrupt the country is a moot point since the New Deal Social Security and Great Society Medicare/Medicaid/Welfare and Compassionate Conservative Medicare Drug programs will do that this century anyway. Enforcing the current law and passing a clean law that anchor babies do not get instant citizenship under the 14 Amendment (1868; for slaves and their families) will solve most of the problems. If the benefits dry up, then the wetbacks will go home.

sconservative
61
Points
sconservative 06/28/07 - 02:28 pm
0
0
I totally agree that Jim

I totally agree that Jim DeMint should become South Carolina's senior Senator in 2008. He actually represents South Carolina. Lindsey has higher goals for himself.

johnsmith
9
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johnsmith 06/28/07 - 03:34 pm
0
0
Seems to me that you could

Seems to me that you could propose one bill that does nothing but build a border fence. Might take, what? 2 pages to describe what's required? Then go one by one down the list of issues in the same way. Want to up the number of LEGAL immigrants permitted each year? Great idea! Should take all of a morning to debate and give it a yes/no vote. Y asi' sucesivamente... In other words, REALLY do what Reid CLAIMED he did, and allow some honest debate on each issue separately, because each of these is a separate issue...

Carleton Duvall
6305
Points
Carleton Duvall 06/28/07 - 03:43 pm
0
0
I agree, johnsmith. The wall,

I agree, johnsmith. The wall, or uncuttable fence, should be the first priority. I will have no confidence that either party is serious until that is done.

t of i
25
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t of i 06/28/07 - 07:46 pm
0
0
DrGumby68. There were

DrGumby68. There were itenerant workers picking peaches in SC long before hordes of illegal latinos came to this country. The industry thrived. By the way, what does the 68 stand for?

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