In one of my other classes we are discussing a particular bill that I found to be pretty interesting The bill has to do with illegal immigrants and making them into criminals.
The Sensenbrenner bill was introduced by James Sensenbrenner, a conservative republican from Milwaukee, on December 6, 2005. The bill stated that any illegal immigrant living becomes a felon or for others to hire or assist such undocumented immigrant. It was created to be a Anti-Terrorism bill but I think it affected the wrong people and the terrorism prevention idea was more of a front to get tougher on illegal immigrants mostly from Mexico.
This bill on top of others have been targeted at illegal immigrants and to speed up deportation and made it even harder to become a legal immigrant. A severe downside of the Sensenbrenner bill is that it would make the illegal immigrants into felons which means that they would be sent to prison to serve time and the United States already has a problem with overcrowding. On top of the issue of overcrowding the court systems are already backed up and this would cause it to get even worse. I think a better solution needs to be found because this would cause more harm than good. Things like the DREAM Act do more good because it actually works with the person instead of against them.
Doing some research online I have found provisions included in the bill:
· Requires up to 700 miles (1120 km) of fence along the US-Mexican border at points with the highest number of illegal border crossings. (House Amendment 648, authored by Duncan Hunter (R-CA52)
· Requires the federal government to take custody of illegal aliens detained by local authorities. This would end the practice of "catch and release", where federal officials sometimes instruct local law enforcement to release detained illegal aliens because resources to prosecute them are not available. It also reimburses local agencies in the 29 counties along the border for costs related to detaining illegal aliens. (Section 607)
· Mandates employers to verify workers' legal status through electronic means, phased in over several years. Also requires reports to be sent to Congress one and two years after implementation to ensure that it is being used. (Title VII)
· Requires the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to report to Congress on the number of Other Than Mexicans (OTMs) apprehended and deported and the number of those from states that sponsor terrorism. (Section 409)
· Formalizes Congressional condemnation of rapes by smugglers along the border and urges Mexico to take immediate action to prevent them. (House Amendment 647, authored by Ginny Brown-Waite)
· Requires all illegal aliens, before being deported, to pay a fine of $3,000 if they agree to leave voluntarily but do not adhere to the terms of their agreement. The grace period for voluntary departure is shortened to 60 days.
· Requires DHS to conduct a study on the potential for border fencing on the US-Canada border.
· Sets the minimum sentence for fraudulent documents at 10 years, fines, or both, with tougher sentencing in cases of aiding drug trafficking and terrorism.
· Establishes a Fraudulent Documents Center within DHS.
· Increases penalties for aggravated felonies and various frauds, including marriage fraud and document fraud.
· Establishes an 18-month deadline for DHS to control the border, with a progress report due one year after enactment of the legislation.
· Requires criminal record, terrorist watch list clearance, and fraudulent document checks for any illegal immigrant before being granted legal immigration status.
· Reimburses states for aiding in immigration enforcement.
· Causes housing of a removed alien to become a felony and sets the minimum prison sentence to three years.
· Allows deportation of any illegal alien convicted of driving under the influence (DUI).
· Adds and human smuggling to the money-laundering statute.
· Increases penalties for employing illegal workers to $7,500 for first time offenses, $15,000 for second offenses, and $40,000 for all subsequent offenses.
· Prohibits accepting immigrants from any country which delays or refuses to accept its citizens who are deported from the United States (Section 404)
Do you think the Sensenbrenner bill is structured more towards anti-terrorism or the removal of illegal immigrants in the United States?