Friday, December 16, 2005

House Votes to Build 700 Miles of Fence Along Border

By RACHEL L. SWARNS

WASHINGTON, Dec. 15 - House Republicans voted on Thursday night to toughen a border security bill by requiring the Department of Homeland Security to build five fences along 698 miles of the United States border with Mexico to block the flow of illegal immigrants and drugs into this country.

The amendment to the bill would require the construction of the fences along stretches of land in California, New Mexico, Texas and Arizona that have been deemed among the most porous corridors of the border.

The vote on the amendment was a victory for conservatives who had long sought to build such a fences along the Mexican border. But the vote was sharply assailed by Democrats, who compared the fences to the Berlin Wall in Germany. Twelve Republicans also voted against the amendment.

Representative David Dreier, Republican of California, hailed the fences as a necessary tool to ensure border security. Construction of the barriers is to include two layers of reinforced fencing, cameras, lighting and sensors near Tecate and Calexico on the California border; Columbus, N.M.; and El Paso, Del Rio, Eagle Pass, Laredo and Brownsville in Texas.
The border security bill, which cracks down on illegal immigration and now mandates the construction of the fences, is expected to pass the House on Friday.

"Border fences are a security tool with proven results," Mr. Dreier said. "This amendment allows us to target our federal resources where they are needed most: five specific border crossings with the highest number of immigrant deaths, instances of drug smuggling and illegal crossings.

The vote on the amendment came on a day when the tough border security bill survived an unexpected tactical challenge from several Republicans. The bill was criticized by some moderates because it does not grant millions of undocumented workers the right to work temporarily in the United States and by some conservatives who argued that the measure was not tough enough.

The unusual revolt highlighted the schism within the Republican Party over the volatile issue of immigration. Business leaders, traditional allies of the party, have lobbied fiercely against the bill, which contains strict employment verification requirements that many executives view as a burden.

Republican leaders stamped out the rebellion after an emergency meeting. But one Republican, Jim Kolbe of Arizona, said he and his allies would continue to try to stop the bill, which has been endorsed by the Republican leadership and some conservatives but attacked by business executives, church leaders and advocates for immigrants.

The bill would require mandatory detention of many immigrants, stiffen the penalties for employers who hire them and broaden the immigrant-smuggling statute to include employees of social service agencies and church groups who offer services to undocumented workers.
It would not create the temporary guest worker program that President Bush has urged to legalize the status of the 11 million illegal immigrants believed to be living in this country.
Seeking to sink the legislation, several Republicans took the tactical step on Thursday of voting against a rule that had to pass to allow the measure to go up for a vote. Some conservatives, who felt the bill was not tough enough, also voted against the rule.

"Unfortunately, the bill before us today does nothing to solve the real problems of immigration," Mr. Kolbe told lawmakers. "But we are going to go down this path, continue this charade, continue lying to the American people, continue pretending we are doing something to prevent illegal immigration."

In addition to Mr. Kolbe, six other Republicans voted against the rule: Representatives Fred Upton of Michigan, Christopher Shays of Connecticut, Jim Leach of Iowa, Heather A. Wilson of New Mexico, J.D. Hayworth of Arizona, and John Hostettler of Indiana.

Mr. Kolbe spoke as faxed letters from the United States Chamber of Commerce warned lawmakers that in its annual ratings of members of Congress, it would penalize any legislator who voted for the rule that would allow the measure to go to the floor for a vote.

By midafternoon, the party's leaders had beaten back the challenge, at least for the day. Representative F. James Sensenbrenner Jr., Republican of Wisconsin, sharply criticized those expressing support for what many conservatives describe as an amnesty for illegal immigrants.

"This bill doesn't give amnesty to illegal aliens and it shouldn't because that would reward someone for breaking our laws," said Mr. Sensenbrenner, who had introduced the border security bill.

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21 Comments:

At Fri Dec 16, 06:23:00 PM 2005, Blogger RWH said...

Appreciate the appearance on Fox today.

Another difference between the proposed fence and the old Berlin Wall is that ours would not have - as presently proposed - automatic machine guns to shoot people who try to cross, whereas the Berlin Wall did have those. That's quite an important difference, especially when the discussion gets into the question of whether we are being unfriendly; obviously, we are not anywhere near as unfriendly as we could be.

 
At Sun Dec 18, 10:40:00 AM 2005, Blogger playmind said...

Americain have begin to build a wall with the rest of the world and this wall is not taking place along the border but in their minds.

somoone from outside.

 
At Sun Dec 18, 02:51:00 PM 2005, Blogger robinguy13 said...

if you're trying to let freedom ring, shouldn't the mexican people fleeing oppresion by allowed freedom as well?

 
At Wed Dec 21, 01:15:00 AM 2005, Blogger vtwin0001 said...

I think they should stop the stupid fascist policy

It is NOT TRUE that thanks to the border between Mexico and US, ppl from terrorist nations get into US territory.

In case you haven't noticed, this last 4 yrs. (post 9/11) of government has been the government of FEAR, they control people by FEAR, with FEAR they take ppl liberties (Patriot act), now, they're ridiculizing the nation (yet again) with this stupid fence.

Why not start building another fence up north with Canada? -It's said that Al Qaeda's ppl got into US territory using the Canadian border, not the Mexican one.

This is just another rascist measure, and it DOES promote rascism.

 
At Thu Dec 22, 11:47:00 PM 2005, Blogger HappyStayAtHomeMom said...

To Playmind - The rest of the world has already had a wall up against us. No matter what we do we are wrong - to everyone else. So, why should we care what the rest of the world thinks about us? Let us defend ourselves and our beliefs and leave us alone. This is not high school. We don't care about being popular. We care about defending our families against people trying to run from the law. Most of the Mexicans coming into the US illegally are only coming in illegally, because they are not allowed to come in legally. And the reason for that is usually because there have warrants out for their arrest. Check it out for yourself.

To Robinguy - Mexicans can let freedom ring -if they do it legally!! Give me a break.

To Vtwin0001 - This doesn't promote racism -it promotes safety. I really just don't understand how people like you work. Is it that you just watch or read all the liberal media you can get. You must be brainwashed into being blind about the facts. What happens when people don't feel like obeying rules? Don't you think that's contagious? When they break the law to get into America, they have to break the everyday to stay in America. They have to scam to get car insurance. They have to scam to get mortgages. They have to scam in order to get their children into the school's that are being paid for by US citizens' tax money! They have to scam in order to work. They have to scam for healthcare. They have to be virtually ignored when they commit a crime, because no one knows the rules to deal with them.
What type of people would want to live like this? Why not just come here legally? If they come here as a criminal - they stay a criminal!

Defend Homeland.

If you don't like it here and you don't like the law - go somewhere else.

If you don't like our flag or our constitution - go somewhere else.

If you don't like that our country was founded on the Ten Commandments and don't like "In God we trust" or "One nation under God" - go somewhere else.

If you have a problem with Christmas - go somewhere else.

 
At Mon Jan 02, 06:37:00 PM 2006, Blogger pauljs75 said...

Isn't the old saying good fences make good neighbors? Anyhow for the fence to be effective, other reforms need to take place. The IRS and Social Security investigative services will need the manpower to ensure the employment laws have teeth.

Also I could see where a guest worker program might not be too bad, but all the costs associated with guest workers should be on the employer and NOT the taxpayer. (Employers of illegal immigrants should find themselves automatically enrolled in a guest worker sponsorship program.) If employers are made fully responsible for taking care of all costs of social services provided to "guest workers", then why not let such businesses have what they want. I'd like to see just how profitable such enterprises are once they take responsibility for their hiring decisions. It's due time for immigrant based corporate welfare to end.

If these measures are put in place properly, the typical motive for cheating the current immigration system will dry up. This alone makes the fence multitudes more effective as a national security device. Rather than preventing masses of the poor trying to find a way out of a problem their own countries are unwilling to solve, it will be those who choose to make incursions for more nefarious reasons.

Also before people argue about racism, they should see how fairly illegal immigrants going the other way are treated by our neighbors to the south. (Hmmm... Only being given bread and water? Having to work off the cost of detaining and deportation via forced labor or hope somebody pays to get you out, etc.) When will you shed a tear for them? Makes the waiting and relatively comfy ride home the U.S. provides pretty trivial in comparison.

Also why should the U.S. be a relief valve for countries that can't take responsibility for the welfare their own people? It's not fair and they need to learn to own up.

 
At Tue Jan 03, 09:02:00 PM 2006, Blogger ohiopatriot said...

The fence is a must, there are too many people crossing and creating a huge strain on our social system. People born here or here legally are being deprived of services and benefits they have worked for all their lives. I have nothing against people who want to come to this country legally, but if you break the law, you need to suffer the consequences.

 
At Tue Jan 17, 08:35:00 PM 2006, Blogger notshy said...

A fence is a long over due solution to our countries problem. Why can't we put the damn politics aside and do what is right for this country.
A fence would protect us all from more than just illegals coming into our country. But would protect us from terrorist as well. How can we truly feel secure with open borders.
Democrates and Republicans need to get real, stop arguing and vote to get it done....and done quickly.

 
At Thu Jan 19, 08:01:00 AM 2006, Blogger quicksgrl said...

With Illegal Immigration and Building a Fence on our National Borders, being the theme, I think that it is time for Every Red Blooded American to make a stand in Washington, D.C.. No less than 200,000 strong. We need to March on Washington and present them in force with petitions protesting everything from job loss and benefits to Social Security for those of us who have worked hard and now can't collect it! These people would rather give it to Illegals that didn't earn it along with welfare and food stamps and home owneship. We can't own property ion Mexico unless we are Mexican citizens and they have zero tolerance for illegal entry. Just ask people coming from Belize how they are treated by armed Mexican soldiers.

Since when does Vincente Fox dictate to our Congress and Senate? Who elected him president of the United States, while he is encouraging them to continue to illegally cross our borders and break every law on the books. I can speak from experience, I was injured by an Illegal and the police did nothing to take him to court or give me the right to a fair trial for his crime. I have nerve damage to my left arm and will probably have it for the rest of my life because of the fracture in my neck. Every last Illegal I was working with lied to protect him and deny me workmen's compensation! There are others just like me see Immigration'shumancost.org, there is a myriad of people, American citizens of every color who have been injured and crimes committed against them for the sake of diversity.

American taxpayers of every color that are here legally have been ignored for long enough! I am tired of being raped by a system that is supposed to be by us and for us not Big Business.

 
At Thu Jan 19, 08:08:00 AM 2006, Blogger quicksgrl said...

It is time for a March on Washington protesting Illegal Immigration. You cannot illegal cross the Mexican Borders nor can you own property there without being a Mexican citizen..Why is Vincente Fox encouraging them to come here illegally, purchase property and break our laws. Did you know they are using the 14th amendment to use anchor babies to stay? when were they brought here in chains or forced into labor? Slavery was abolished in 1865.

Taxpayers are tired of paying for people who have not earned the right to any of our gratuities!

 
At Thu Jan 19, 08:10:00 PM 2006, Blogger Lynn Harris said...

With the knowledge of the Mexican Military escorting drug runners across our border and miles into our country, while firing on and sometimes wounding our border patrol comming to light, maybe more people will see the need for this. I am infuriated to find out that this has been going on for years.

This is an invasion by anyone's definition. When a military force crosses borders and fires on the other side?

Thanks for what you do here, many are behind this, and as we spread the word, many more will be.

 
At Mon Jan 30, 09:32:00 PM 2006, Blogger vtwin0001 said...

HappyStayAtHomeMom:

Facts or inventions?

News might be created or exaggerated so people start to be afraid, afraid of doing anything.

Mexican people just come to the US because they feel their stupid government does not support them. Most of them are peasants, of course, low class.. however, how many of your upscale relatives were rich when arriving to the land of the free?
Why should any of your ancestors in the 18th ~ 20th century migrate to this country IF they weren't tired of stupid governments?

Mexican government is (believe it or not, a rich one) People that live over there are poor thanks to stupid representatives (senators and the like).
These peasants what they do is work the land, how, if you were like them, would yo do if for each bag filled with --let's say oranges-- they'll pay you 1 u.s. cent? Isn't that atrocious?
Even more ironic will be when you know they'll be building this wall and the people that will be building it will be Mexicans!

Even more ironic will be when US Economy start to fall due to the "take the Mexican people out of our country" thing... can't you see that those "illegal" workers are the ones responsible for the cereal, the eggs the bacon or whatever you might be eating at your house?
They pay them very low wages in order to maintain very low prices ON THE FOOD WE BUY.
It's a win / win situation.
If you think that Mexican people are just gangs, robbers and assassins, I think you are terribly wrong.
Since immemorial times, there has been a lot of movement in that area, not because US was the US and Mexico, Mexico but because people tend to move for one place to the other, it's like if you live in NY and go to NJ! It's just about the same, and the people that live South of the border are one and the same kind of their counterparts in US (I'm talking about Mexican residents living there, in Mexico, like Tijuana and San Diego).
Fact is that 9/11 did change everything, but giving the back to -Not only Mexico, but Latin America, might be a bad decision for the country. Not only because they have the potential to create a better economy, but because the US will stop being influential in their economies -thus making this countries more potent (those countries have been since always with a foot on their throat thanks to US politics. This might change if a fence is built.

 
At Sat Feb 04, 05:07:00 AM 2006, Blogger Nimbvs said...

If only 500 years ago the Native Americans had built a fence...

 
At Thu Feb 09, 02:12:00 PM 2006, Blogger HappyStayAtHomeMom said...

vtwin0001:

You say Mexicans come here because their stupid government doesn't support them. Well by letting people in this country (illegally) to take advantage of all of the tax money Americans spend is pretty stupid, too. Right?
Secondly, I do not have any upscale relatives. We are middle to lower class financially. We all work our butts off to take care of our families and put them in school and pay for our car insurance, and mortgages, and taxes, etc... Which we are sharing with thousands of freeloading neighbors that do not have to pay toward any of those things. They break the law when they come here. And then they get to live without law with free schooling. I do have sympathy for ALL people. But, I don't care if rich people or poor people are coming here illegally - the fact is they are coming here ILLEGALLY. This is not the 18th century anymore. This is not the wild west, either. We have rules and laws that we all have to live by.

I understand that the Mexican government is corrupt. But if all Mexicans took the same energy and sacrifices that they take to leave the country and used them instead to make their country better, rise up and live for their own country, we wouldn't have to support them ALL. I understand that people are practically being treated like slaves, but do you really think that it is flattering to come here and work for what Americans say is "slave wages". You're probably right that if there was a fence built it would probaly be built by Mexicans. That's just one more reason why our government is also "stupid". Even our own government can't support American workers. They want the cheapest workers possible, because that means more money in their pockets.

I'm so sick of hearing that Mexicans are only taking jobs that Americans don't want. I know plenty of people who need jobs and would work doing anything anywhere. But how can they compete. Americans need to make enough money to live in America and pay American taxes. Mexicans will work for $5 an hour, or less. Why would an employer (one who also doesn't care about Americans) pay an American when he can buy himself an ILLEGAL Mexican for $5 an hour?

I do not think that Mexican people are just gangs, robbers and assassins. But if you want we can talk about MS-13.

If people want to move from one place to another, like you said- "it's like if you live in NY and go to NJ", I wouldn't have a problem. As long as they took the proper law-abiding steps to get here and paid their taxes.

Honestly 9/11 has nothing to do with this issue for me. This has been an increasing problem far longer than that.

We are really not turning our back on Mexicans- or anyone for that matter. We are just asking for people to obey the law.

Here is an anolagy that might make you think differently about it. Say you have a heard of cattle (I am not likening Mexicans to cattle) that are let out of the barn and asked to go to their food. The minute they leave the barn they scatter everywhere and are impossible to keep track of. Some cattle get lost and end up in someone elses farm, where they eat the food and take the shelter of their new neighbors. Some cattle deliberatly run, because they do not want to be caught - these are the cattle that like to destroy people grasslands and run into fences. Then, you also have a few cattle that will just stay still and wait for instruction from the farmer - they obey the rules and are much more suitable to be around other cattle- they also get to eat. Anyway, it would really be a shame if this farmer didn't have a fence to guide the cattle from the barn to their food. He could direct them the safest and easiest way. He would then also be able to manage the unruly cattle, take them out of the food line, and put them back in the barn.

A fence is just a way to show there are certain areas we do not want people to get lost. We need to be able to manage everyone coming in. They need to get the proper paperwork. If all of Latin America wants to take that personally, I cannot help that.

As far as American Indians go - they should've built a fence. But now we have to.

P.S. Amen to Quicksgrl!

 
At Thu Mar 23, 12:15:00 AM 2006, Blogger shamlin said...

A cross between R2D2 and a jeep, the United States military’s unmanned robotic warrior can maneuver desert terrains with only a computer to guide it. These sophisticated computer driven vehicles can be programmed to patrol a storage area or perform reconnaissance missions. Eventually these autonomous lethal warriors will fight and apprehend enemy combatants because they can differentiate or detect color, heat and texture.

Spy satellites have been circling the globe for the last decade. Digital imaging now allows a casual user on a website to zoom in and see ground objects, while military users deploy more sophisticated imaging to monitor cargo or troop movement. Using infrared heat lights, anything that emits infrared heat can be visible at night making 24 by 7 aerial surveillance a reality. Robotics, satellites and imaging technologies are deployable at any point on earth and can be monitored remotely from command stations.

There are several proposals in Congress now to wall various lengths of our southern border between the U.S. and Mexico ranging from a 14 mile wall at San Diego to a 2000 mile wall along most of the California and Arizona border. The construction of such a wall will take years and the wall will still need electronic devices to monitor those who would scale it or dig under it. We also have a border with Canada. Will we need another wall for the Canadian border?

I question the use of low-tech solutions such as border walls to solve sophisticated problems like immigration. We need to spend our tax dollars segregating those who simply want to work here from those who are already here and want to kill us. We should collect taxes from those working here and prosecute terrorists. How will a wall serve us in such pursuits?

Using technology, the U.S. will once again become a showcase for its scientific expertise. We will attract the best and brightest students into the study of science. Just as we ventured into space in the last century with federal dollars, our 2001 tax dollars should be spent on technology to make us safer.

A wall is a visceral reaction to an unchecked immigration policy. Scientific technology can help us create rational enforcement and detection policies and the United States will maintain its lead in technological innovation.

 
At Thu Mar 30, 12:33:00 AM 2006, Blogger wlf said...

Enough with this racists BS, 80% of the illegal drugs that come into the US cross the Mexican border according to the DEA. In 1939 Italian Gen. Graziani built a barb wire wall on the Libyan Egyptian border, 15 ft. high, 150 ft. deep and 500 miles long, into the desert to keep guns, supplies and men from the Libyan ( I guess we would call them "insurgents" today). The wall stopped about 95% of the "insurgents" supplies and Gen. Graziani was able to defeat them. JUST think wouldn’t it be nice to stop 95% of the 80% of the illegal drugs entering the US?? To all you OPEN BORDER people the easiest way to solve the problem is for Mexico to annex the US as part of Mexico. BUT then I do not think any of you would enjoy earning $5 a day and like livening in a cardboard shack. Yes, I know there are not many Americans who want to be forced to learn how to speak Spanish. OR the US could annex Mexico then EVERYONE is a US citizen and the standard of living in Mexico goes up 100% overnight. Personally I would just be happy with stopping the illegal drugs.

 
At Mon Apr 03, 12:40:00 AM 2006, Blogger peta said...

To: HappyStayAtHomeMom-

I'm not sure where in the U.S. you live, but where I'm from, undocumented workers (including my family members) pay taxes that they never recover at the end of the year and make between $12 and $18 an hour at various jobs that provide a year-around income. Not to mention all of the money they pay into social security that they will never see again because if you are undocumented, on a work permit, or a permanent resident, you can't ever receive social security benefits. I guess that the belief that undocumented workers don't pay taxes and make miserable wages is a fallicy here in the Midwest. Here we live quite well and are making a future for ourselves that wouldn't have been possible in Mexico. Maybe you should move if you have to work so hard to put food on the table for your family in your area of the country. I am thankful for all of the opportunities that this country grants those that happened to have been born by chance in a country with fewer opportunities. People do not choose where they are born and it is not fair to punish them for it. For those that have never experienced the immigration process, it is next to impossible to gain legal entrance to the United States if you are a Latin American, even if you are educated. I feel sorry for those that feel such anger and hatred toward people they know nothing about. Peace be with you.

 
At Fri Apr 07, 09:07:00 PM 2006, Blogger mk said...

Out of all the postings that I have read the one that least makes sense is happytostayathomemom these are all of the fears in general that hve no basis and have proven to be unfounded..you said they can't get visas b/c the "reason for that is usually because there have warrants out for their arrest",where do you get your ideas...the reasong they can't get visas is for lack of money and a whole list of other reasons least of which is a criminal background if you remember first they have to go trough their gevernment to even apply for entry into the U.S and money is first on the list which if they had they wouldn't want to come in the first place...You said "our country was founded on the Ten Commandments and don't like "In God we trust" or "One nation under God" - go somewhere else."...really what world do you live in because In my world and church I attend this government has long ago abandoned any semblence of the basis of the Ten Commandments or any following of christianity...I totally agree with peta All of the immigrants I know don't live on our healthcare, don't qualify for food stamps and even if the get them Which I Don't agree with anyway all of the money that they have never claimed with taxes and the social security they will never claim they have still overpaid....There is a solution and a fence is a good idea for security reasons, but becomming racist against a general group that we are all decendents of is just plain backtracking

 
At Mon May 01, 11:01:00 AM 2006, Blogger Osageguy said...

To those who oppose a 'secure' border, which includes a wall or fence; What part of ILLEGAL dont you understand? When in the very beginning of your existance in OUR country you break the law, how do you expect LEGAL AMERICANS to feel about it? It may very well be difficult to enter our country in a legal fashion. Most things worth having are difficult to obtain. True born and bred Americans will NOT EVER approve of anyone coming into our country in an illegal fashion. I know and am aware of many people from Mexico who contribute to our country in a positive way, and who are of LEGAL status. I commend them. In my view they are welcome to be my neighbors. But to those who come to America illegally, and to those who support this illegal 'cause', I have no use for your kind. We 'AMERICANS' need to let the companies and business officals who support this kind of action how we feel. I am aware of many companies who are closing for the so called 'day without immigrants' or granting those 'employees' some kind of grace. These companies need to feel the wrath of US, who purchase the products they produce. Tyson and Cargill are two such companies. Americans, do your homework. Let these companies know how you feel. Write your state Reps, and let them know how you feel. I am American. I fly an American flag. I am a veteran of the USAF. AND, I VOTE.

 
At Wed May 10, 01:04:00 AM 2006, Blogger RUSSSS said...

WE NEED A WALL WITH PILLINGS 20 FEET DOWN,OR MORE,NAT. GUARD&NAT. GUARD OPERATIONS,RIFLE&ARTILLERY RANGES,BALLONS WITH,WHATEVER /HOW EVER THEY WERE GOING TO USE THEM,SONARS,RADARS,ETC. UNTILL A REAL WALL AS PER IS BUILT,NOT A ''FENCE'',ALLL THIS WILL KEEP ''THEM AT BAY UNTILL A WALL IS BUILT ,WE HAVE QUITE PROBLEM HERE IN ALASKA WITH ''THEM'' ALSO WITH THE PROMISE OF BIG WAGES WITH THE OIL,LOW POPULATION,ANWR/GASLINE-BUILD THAT DAM WALL NOW

 
At Wed May 10, 01:07:00 AM 2006, Blogger RUSSSS said...

WE NEED A WALL WITH PILLINGS 20 FEET DOWN,OR MORE,NAT. GUARD&NAT. GUARD OPERATIONS,RIFLE&ARTILLERY RANGES,BALLONS WITH,WHATEVER /HOW EVER THEY WERE GOING TO USE THEM,SONARS,RADARS,ETC. UNTILL A REAL WALL AS PER IS BUILT,NOT A ''FENCE'',ALLL THIS WILL KEEP ''THEM AT BAY UNTILL A WALL IS BUILT ,WE HAVE QUITE PROBLEM HERE IN ALASKA WITH ''THEM'' ALSO WITH THE PROMISE OF BIG WAGES WITH THE OIL,LOW POPULATION,ANWR/GASLINE-BUILD THAT DAM WALL NOW-SEMPER FI

 

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