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Goodlatte Attacked by Far Right Over "Amnesty": Good News for CIR? By Roger Algase

Rating: 2 votes, 5.00 average.
My September 25 post painted a rather gloomy picture for the future of any proposal to legalize 11 million people in the House. I questioned whether Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) the powerful House Judiciary Committee Chairman, has any real intention of agreeing to legalization for anyone beyond the DREAMer's, or even all of those.

However, members of the far right wing anti-immigrant lobby have a different take on Goodlatte's intentions. They don't trust him to kill CIR. Instead, they are attacking him for allegedly supporting their two favorite bogeymen, "amnesty" and "open borders".

A headline on the site Right Side News (www.rightsidenews.com) for September 25 screams:

"House Judiciary Chairman Supports Citizenship for ALL Illegal Aliens"

The reasoning, if it can be called that, behind this strange interpretation of what Goodlatte has actually been saying is that granting citizenship to newly legalized immigrants through "regular channels" could lead to all 11 million currently unauthorized immigrants becoming citizens one day.

Forget about the fact that Goodlatte has never stated that he supports legalization for 11 million people. Forget that only a small percentage of legalized immigrants (if legalization were to become reality for anyone besides DREAMers) would be eligible for green cards citizenship through marriage to US citizens (or LPR's), or employer sponsorship, which are the only "regular channels" available for all practical purposes.

Right Side News explains its thinking as follows:

"While strikingly similar to the Senate Gang of Eight plan, Goodlatte called his plan a 'major solution' and said amnesty [sic] would 'help our country solve a very serious problem of not knowing who is here...'"

Right Side News continues:

"Though he says it is not a 'special path', Goodlatte's amnesty plan skirts federal law to give illegal aliens [sic] eventual citizenship."

The fact that Goodlatte is being attacked from the far right for being "pro-amnesty" may be the best news yet for the chances of immigration reform.

In the meantime, the Senate CIR bill, S. 744. is under attack from some House Democrats for not going far enough on reform.

In her September 25 Politico article House Democrats question immigration plan, Seung Min Kim writes that there is objection on the Democratic side to the Senate bill's elimination of the Africa-friendly Diversity Visa program and of eligibility for US citizens to sponsor their siblings for green cards.

These concerns are well taken. The only possible reason for eliminating these two programs is to make it harder for black and Latino immigrants to obtain green cards.

But would bringing these issues up now do anything to help CIR pass in the House, where immigration reform is already on life support? More likely, this would only lead to the Democrats being blamed for the failure of CIR, if House Republicans are successful in killing it.


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Updated 09-26-2013 at 02:34 AM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

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