A group of swing-voting Senators has drafted an immigration proposal which recycles the failed “trigger” scheme from the disastrous Gang of Eight amnesty plan which eventually loosed Donald Trump on Washington.
The bill has been developed for introduction in the Senate’s immigration debate, starting Monday, by a group of GOP and Democratic Senators.
The proposal is just grandstanding, said one source, because it does not try to meet three of President Donald Trump four requirements, which were laid out in his State of the Union speech. “If they wanted a bill, they would be working with the President,” said the source.
The trigger in the 2013 plan was intended to mute public opposition to the bill’s huge amnesty for all illegals in the United States. It allowed Senators to say that the final parts of the amnesty would be withheld until government officials certified the border security met supposedly strict criteria outlined in the Senates amnesty bill.
But the 2013 trigger was a fake because the criteria were so vague they could not have stopped the political and business pressure to complete the amnesty.
The trigger was also a political failure because it could not save the unpopular amnesty bill from being buried by the House in June 2014.
Also, while the trigger helped the amnesty bill pass the Senate 68-32, the amnesty debate prompted a populist reaction in the GOP. That reaction helped flip nine Democratic seats to the GOP the next November, and helped Trump win election as President in November 2016. It also left Sen. Chuck Schumer as Minority Leader in 2017, not Majority Leader.
The new trigger is included in the group’s draft amnesty for roughly 3 million young illegals, which is wrapped up in a few token offsets. Those offsets include just $1 billion for border security — despite Trump’s request for $25 billion — plus the promise of a GAO study on security, plus the “trigger.”
The swing-voting Senators are being led by Maine Sen. Susan Collins. She’s pushing for more legal immigration even though her home state is losing investment and residents to other warmer states where the annual wave of 1 million legal immigrant workers and consumers mostly choose to live. Only 95 of 690,000 DACA illegals are based in Maine according to 2017 data.
On February 8, Collins told reporters:
There will probably be more than one [bill proposed], but it’s too early to tell right now … There’s still a lot of discussion going on.
Collins has closeted herself with other swinging Senators, such as GOP Sens. Lindsey Graham, Lisa Murkowski, Mike Rounds, Cory Gardner, James Lankford and retiring Jeff Flake.
They are meeting with Democrats who are facing tough election battles this year, including Sens. Joe Manchin of West Virginia, Claire McCaskill of Missouri, and Bill Nelson from Florida. Those Democrats are reluctant to vote for an amnesty that will be used against them in the November election — especially if the House prevents a political payoff by deep-sixing the amnesty as it did in 2014.
The group describes itself as the “Common Sense Caucus.”
The caucus also includes Sen. Marco Rubio, whose lost his presidential chance in 2016 when he accepted the 2012 invitation to join the Gang of Eight, at the request of Graham and Schumer.
GOP Sen. Thom Tillis, a strong advocate for outsourcing white-collar jobs, told reporters Thursday the group of swing-voting Senators would authorize only $2.5 billion, but would also include a promise to spend another $22.5 billion.
According to the Washington Times, Tillis “said there appears to be consensus on the 1.8 million number, and said they are willing to authorize up to $25 billion for fencing — though they’ll only allocate $2.5 billion to $5 billion in real money.”
Flake is also developing a fallback anesty plan if the first amnesty is rejected. According to Politico, he “is preparing a fallback measure that would extend Obama-era legal protections for young undocumented immigrants paired with some border security funding if Congress fails to come up with a broader agreement on so-called Dreamers.”
According to Politico, Flake said that multiple Democratic Senators prefer keeping the immigration issue boiling up to election day:
“A lot of Democrats, a lot of the base, from what I hear, is just saying: ‘Forget it. Wait for the midterms,’” Flake said. “It’s not as if we hold all the cards here as Republicans.”
In contrast, business groups, Democrats, and the establishment media tout misleading, industry-funded “Nation of Immigrants” polls which pressure Americans to say they welcome migrants, including the roughly 3 million ‘dreamer’ illegals.
The alternative “priority or fairness” polls — plus the 2016 election — show that voters in the polling booth put a much higher priority on helping their families, neighbors, and fellow nationals get decent jobs in a high-tech, high-immigration, low-wage economy.