In an effort led by Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and Senators Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), and Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), Senate Democrats are moving towards an Amnesty bill without Republican support. A 26-page outline was circulated today, detailing an Amnesty plan that is similar to the one first released by Senators Schumer and Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) a few weeks ago.
The outline includes an Amnesty for the nation's 11-18 million illegal aliens, but only after the border has been secured. It calls for an increase in border patrol and immigration agents along with an entry/exit system.
Just like the Schumer/Graham outline, all workers would be required to carry a biometric identification card, and fines for employers who knowingly hire illegal aliens would increase by 300%.
Over the weekend, Sen. Graham threatened to remove himself from the bill's negotiations if Majority Leader Reid rushed an Amnesty bill in the aftermath of Arizona's new immigration enforcement bill. Sen. Graham also threatened to stop work on a bipartisan energy bill. Yesterday, during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, Graham said that Congress should wait until it can prove to Americans that the border is secure before moving ahead with an Amnesty bill.
Senate Democrats have also came under fire from Members in the House, where an Amnesty bill has already been written, and Members of the Hispanic and Black Caucuses. Rep. Luis Gutierrez, who crafted the House bill, said the Senate keeps bringing a banking reform bill to the floor that keeps failing vote after vote, but they won't try an Amnesty bill.
"That's what we expect from them on comprehensive immigration reform," Rep. Gutierrez said. "It is time for them to make their proposal clear."
Updated: Wed, Apr 28th 2010 @ 4:31pm EDT