There are a number of problems with Thom Hartmann’s assertions, not the least being that approximately half of illegal aliens are not here because they overstayed their visas. Although he is correct in asserting that this group constitutes a growing portion of the illegal immigrant population living here, even if-like most things touching upon an activity that is illegal-accounting for specific sub-groups within this demographic cohort-much less pinpointing how they came here with any specificity-is nearly impossible.
Putting aside that cavil, much of his monologue correctly identifies the fatal flaws of past amnesties such as the Simpson-Mazzoli Act, which served as the predicate for the disastrous amnesty proposals now being crafted on Capitol Hill and promoted by the White House. It should come as no surprise that the authors of the law which opened the spigot of illegal immigration during the Reagan administration also support these ill-conceived plans.
The fact that Republican officeholders have served as one of the chief impediments to immigration enforcement is an uncomfortable yet inexorable truth. As Roy Beck explained in painstaking detail during his speech to the Penn Club earlier this year, the main reason E-Verify-which the Obama administration had signaled it might eventually support-was not implemented on a federal level during the last session of Congress was due to obstructionism on the part of House Republican leaders such as Speaker Boehner and powerful committee chairman such as Fred Upton.
It’s something to keep in mind the next time you watch John Boehner punish wayward House conservatives for daring to stand up for principle, even as he schemes with like-minded confidence men in Washington intent upon continuing the strip-mining of American citizenship.