Rand Paul was ready. He wanted to sign on to Marco Rubio and the Gang of Eight’s immigration reform proposal. He sees immigration reform as a desperately needed and desperately wanted objective in today’s America.
When it became obvious that the bill the Gang of Eight was getting ready to propose would not be good enough to sign onto, he proposed an amendment that, by most accounts, would close the worrisome loopholes and make the bill something conservatives could vote for. The Democrats, a few RINO’s, and two conservatives (Rubio and Flake) who had gotten in too deep voted to scrap the amendment. Once the Democrats had done away with Paul’s “Trust but Verify” Amendment, the Junior Senator from Kentucky knew he would not be able to support the measure.
Candy Crowley of CNN tried to make Senator Paul’s objections seem trivial in light of the money being spent on the bill, knowing full well that many of the provisions wouldn’t kick in for years, and that other provisions could simply be killed by the Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano. However, Paul avoided the trap and responded with logic:
“It may, but we’ve thrown a lot of money at a lot of problems in our country,” Paul said. “To me, what really tells me that they’re serious is letting Congress vote on whether the border is secure. If the people in the country want to be assured that we will not get another 10 million people to come here illegally over the next decade, they have to believe that they get a vote through their Congress.”
The latest news from the capitol has us reliving the Obamacare debacle, where our Representatives were being asked to vote on legislation they hadn’t even read. Well, it’s happening again: “I can’t tell you I’ll read every word,”said Democrat Senator Ben Cardin. “The Maryland senator added that he “already read a great part of the bill,” and will “closely scrutinize” any changes to border security.”
Senator Ted Cruz of Texas is equally miffed that the bill is being rushed along.
“Americans – including myself, my fellow senators and our staffs – are still trying to figure out exactly what is in the new Schumer-Corker-Hoeven “deal.”
Sound familiar? Pass it to find out what’s in it? Reminiscent of Obamacare, the lengthy amendment to replace the Gang of 8’s original bill was crafted behind closed doors and introduced late on Friday, after many members had left town. In the 2007 immigration debate, close to 50 amendments were considered. But this year, we have only debated 9 – with some of us being completely shut out.“
Even the famous Bob Woodward of Watergate fame is surprised by the lack of review the bill has gotten. “When you pass complicated legislation and no one has really read the bill…the outcome is absurd.”
The truth of the matter is that it may not matter anymore– the Senate has taken too long to realistically get the reform passed in time for the House to get it, debate it, and vote on it. It’s very likely that we will see this very debate rise up again next year, and consume a lot of our political conversation yet again.
The question is, will the process be handled better in 2014 than it has been in 2013? For everyone’s sake, I hope so.
The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by EagleRising.com