Imigration Reform: 14th Amendment Attacked While Borders Not SecuredBy Mark Wilson on December 26, 2010, 8:15 am
Immigration reform being the most recent argument among the nation’s leaders, the opposition managed to shoot down the DREAM Act down just before they adjourned for their holiday vacations. But this isn’t he only things that legislators, and now state Attorney Generals, are trying to improve the immigration laws in the U.S.
The Argument Over The 14th Amendment
At the heart of the debate on birthright citizenship is a dispute over the interpretation of the 14th Amendment to the Constitution, which states, “All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside.” The amendment, ratified in 1868, was intended to ensure that children of freed slaves were granted U.S. citizenship. But legal scholars believe the chances that the issue will be taken up by the Supreme Court are slim.
Arizona Will Have Company, If It Goes Anywhere
Incoming Arizona State Senate President Russell Pearce, R-Mesa, is scheduled to join with lawmakers from 15 other states in unveiling a template for legislation addressing birthright citizenship. At that same time, though, Arizonans have been hit hard by the recession. The state’s economy is stagnant. State Sen. Frank Antenori, R-Tucson, sees stimulating the economy as a higher priority than pushing legislation on the 14th Amendment. The state’s budget deficit of at least $825 million this year represents 9.7% of their total.
Still, there are federal lawmakers that are saying that they will not consider any immigration legislation until our borders are made more secure. And this needs to happen. Recently audit results were released that gave our border security very poor marks. They found that CBP remains unprepared to fully implement the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative, which officially took effect in June 2009 and requires all travelers, including U.S. citizens, to carry passports or one of a handful of other forms of secure ID. Most ashamedly, after the first eight months that the requirements took effect, more than 2.3 million travelers failed to provide proper paperwork at U.S. land ports of entry.