This week: Immigration bill stalls; G8 Summit calls

By The News Jun 08, 2007

This week seems to have been unproductive for national and global policy makers involved with president Bush and his policies. In the Senate, the "comprehensive" immigration bill being debated has faced calls to limit discussion and also derailment by Republicans who want to sharpen the bill’s noose around immigrant rights. Also this week, In Germany, leaders met for the G8 Summit. Thursday, president Bush slapped down Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel’s plan to put the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions on a time line. While this was yet another clear presidential act of mass incomprehension, it’s not so clear with the immigration bill Bush backs. The problems brewing over immigration might actually result in the squandering of the bill–which may be the best thing that happened to it. The New York Times reported:

Senator Dianne Feinstein, the California Democrat, who is a co-author of the bill, said talk show hosts were partly responsible for derailing it. "I’ve listened to talk show hosts drumming up the opposition by using this word amnesty over and over and over again," Mrs. Feinstein said. In 15 years in the Senate, she added, "I’ve never received more hate or more racist phone calls and threats." Speaking at the site of the Group of 8 summit in Heiligendamm, Germany, Dan Barlett, the White House counselor, called for action to move the bill forward. “The best way to proceed is for Republicans and Democrats to come together and vote on this legislation and then we can move it into the House of Representatives,” Mr. Bartlett said. Mr. Bush had been a strong proponent of the sweeping immigration overhaul that crumbled in the Senate on Thursday night, leaving the future of one of the administration’s chief domestic priorities in serious doubt.

The bill–which promises to overhaul the immigration system by installing a perpetual guest-worker program, a line of barbed fencing along the U.S.-Mexico border, a merit-based immigration policy, and the legalization of 12 million illegal immigrants through a complex labyrinth of bureaucracy–has yet to prove itself as a bill for the people. The bill is better off completely re-written or stalled.