Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Americans Ahead of the Curve

It seems as though the marches yesterday had the desired effect and are putting pressure on the Senate to pass compassionate immigration legislation.

Pressure needs to be maintained on the officials that seem to think that kicking people out of the country is a smart thing to do. Pressure needs to be kept on people who are foolish enough to think that the economy of this country isn't propped up on the backs of the very same immigrants they are villifying.

I read this article in the Post and it was reassuring to see this piece:

But amid partisan finger-pointing, the Senate left town Friday for a two-week recess, having failed to pass a bipartisan immigration compromise that appeared to have the support of a clear majority of the Senate. The deal also appears to have overwhelming support among voters. A new Washington Post-ABC News poll found that 63 percent of those surveyed backed letting immigrants who have lived in the country a certain number of years apply for legal status and eventually become citizens.

In contrast, only 14 percent favored a plan to let illegal immigrants work for a limited number of years before having to return to their home countries -- an alternative pushed by Sens. John Cornyn (R-Tex.) and Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.). An additional 20 percent said illegal immigrants should be declared felons and offered no temporary work program, a stand that corresponds with the legislation approved by the House.

It seems as though Americans are ahead of the curve on this issue and the reason the Senate doesn't want to vote on it is becuase the know it.

According to this poll, 63% of Americans are in favor of the slightly compromised version of the legislation that went through the judiciary committee.

The thing that worries me about these numbers though is the last one. 20 percent said illegal immigrants should be declared felons and kicked out of the country. This is insane. Madness. Lunacy. The part about this that's worse is that, that means only 20% actually support the version of the legislation that passed through the House.

Things are very confusing. Aren't elected representatives supposed to "represent" their constituents?

I would advise calling your congressmen and senators and tell them how you feel about Immigration. Write them. Let them know... I do. All the time. I'm sick of getting form letters from Orrin Hatch telling me how nice it is to hear my opinion and how saddened he is that our opinions differ on "this issue" and that he hopes to find common ground with me on other issues.

Here's a copy of the note I sent him today. If I get another form response, I'll post it here as well.
Senator Hatch,

I've been keeping a close eye on the Immigration debate and I can't help but notice that you voted against the version of the bill (drafted by Senators Kennedy and McCain) that went through the Judiciary Committee, of which you are a member. I find it odd that you do this for a couple of reasons. First, the measure has the support of a majority of Americans, including some in your contituency. Second, it's the most humane legislation to be proposed yet. Being a good Christian, I'm sure you're interested in treating the least among us, whether they are from this country or not, with the utmost respect and care. Third, the bill, although you've called it amnesty, is not "amnesty." I would advise you read the editorial in the New York Times that appeared on March 29, 2006 on the opinions page entitled, "It's Not Amnesty." It would be quite enlightening and explain the falsehood of the argument you've been stumping with lately.

I would hope that your Christian ideals prevail and you switch positions on this issue. As one of your constituents, it would cause me great sadness to know that the men representing me in the Senate lack compassion and understanding on the complex issue of immigration.

I would love to hear back from you, maybe not another form letter, but with a public response explaining why you've decided to change your position on this issue.

Thank You

Bryan Young

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