I received the following E-mail from FAIR, the Federation for American Immigration Reform. Amnesty amendments have been slipped into the Iraq war funding bill that comes up before the Senate this week. Call your senator now to stop approval of this bill! (Writing or E-mailing will be too slow to be effective.) There’s a link at the end of the FAIR message you can use to easily obtain your senator’s phone number.
Federation for American Immigration Reform Action Alert
Amnesty Amendment Added to Iraqi War Funding Bill!
Call Your Senators Now!!
Late Thursday afternoon, the Senate Appropriations Committee attached
several immigration amendments – including an amnesty amendment – to the Iraq War Funding Bill. By doing so, members of the Senate Finance
Committee not only snuck controversial amendments into a bill that
funds our servicemen and women, but they chose to attach guest worker
amnesty provisions that the American people flatly rejected in 2007!
These amendments are designed to allow corporations to import hundreds of thousands of additional guest workers at a time when the U.S. economy is struggling.
The Iraq War Funding Bill could be on the Senate floor as early as
NEXT WEEK as Senators try to finish business before the Memorial Day
recess. FAIR is asking all members, activists, and friends to
call their Senators NOW and tell them you oppose these measures!
Two of the amendments adopted in the Senate Appropriations Committee were provisions rejected in last year’s Bush-Kennedy Amnesty Bill (S.1639). These include:
(1) The Feinstein AgJOBS Amendment. This amendment, authored by
Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), grants 5-year amnesty visas to 1.35
million illegal alien agricultural workers plus their families by
granting them “emergency worker status.” The amendment also:
* Grants work authorization to beneficiaries and their spouses;
* Grants travel authorization to beneficiaries and their families;
* Otherwise treats beneficiaries as green card holders (legal
permanent residents); and
* Prohibits beneficiaries from being prosecuted for social
security fraud and related identity theft crimes.
To qualify for the amnesty program, an illegal alien must show he or
she was employed at least 150 days or earned at least $7,000.00 in the
agricultural sector in the 48 months ending December 31, 2007.
The alien will then pay a fee of $250.00 and receive an identification
card evidencing his or her legal status.
(2) The Mikulski H-2B Amendment. This amendment, authored by Senator Barbara Mikulski (D-MD), will increase the number of unskilled H-2B guest workers by reinstating the returning worker exemption for a
period of three years. This exemption (which expired last year) allows
guest workers who entered the U.S. through the H-2B guest worker
program in the previous three years to return without counting towards
the 66,000 cap. This exemption could lead to exponential growth in the
H-2B program, potentially increasing the number of unskilled H-2B
guest workers by over 200,000 in just a few years.
But the Senate Appropriations Committee didn’t stop there! It adopted
two other immigration amendments intended to appease special interests and corporations. The Murray-Gregg Amendment, authored by Senators Patty Murray (D-WA) and Judd Gregg (R-NH), increases the number of employment-based green cards available for multinational executives and so-called “high-tech” workers by “recapturing” approximately 218,000 unused visas from as far back as 1994. The Leahy Amendment, authored by Judiciary Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-VT), extends the duration of a program that helps rich investors obtain green cards.
Please call your Senators NOW and tell them you are appalled that
these are the priorities of the United States Senate! Tell your
Senators that the only immigration legislation you want taken up in
Congress is true immigration reform legislation that restores common
sense to our system, secures our borders, and imposes tough sanctions
on employers who exploit cheap foreign labor.
To find the phone numbers of your Senators, click here.