RUSH: I have an immigration stack today that we’re going to be spending a lot of time on. I’m going to answer questions. I have a lot of people upset that I didn’t fully answer the question from the woman that called yesterday from Flint, wondering why can’t the oil companies just ‘be fair’ and lower their profits a little bit so as to help us all out. I’m going to answer that in great detail here from a number of different points of view, contexts, or what have you. I have lots of other interesting things that are all over the board here today. The immigration bill, I guess, is the thing. This is I think D-Day for it as of now. The AP has a story: ‘A bipartisanship group of senators, scrambling with White House officials to reach an elusive agreement to fortify the border and grant quick legal status to millions of illegal immigrants living in the US. Senator Kennedy, the Democrats’ lead negotiator, called Thursday D-Day in the talks, saying it was likely the last chance for a compromise before Senators scattered for a three-day weekend. If no deal emerges, Senate Democrats were to vote Monday evening to bring up an immigration measure that passed last year over the objections of most Republicans who have said they will block it. It would be a highly partisan start to the immigration debate, divides the two parties,’ and so forth and so on. Dingy Harry, the Senate majority leader, said that he wants to complete a bill before Memorial Day, and President Bush says he wants to sign one by summer’s end.
This bill is worse than doing nothing. We’re back to the same old thing, and this is one of the things about Washington that’s very frustrating. ‘There has to be a bill. Congress has to do something. We must get something.’ No, Congress doesn’t have to do anything. The immigration circumstance right now is bad enough. This bill is going to make it much, much worse. What’s happening now is in order to get a bill; in order to be able to say they’ve moved forward on immigration. In order to be able to say that something’s ‘been done,’ the Republicans are in the process, along with the White House, of backing off some of their original demands in this. The Bush administration, trying to win this immigration agreement with the Democrats, is now backing away from safeguards which are designed to target businesses that hire illegal aliens and to prevent a repeat of the rampant fraud that resulted from the ’86 amnesty. This is what Tony Snow was talking about with us on the program yesterday. They were going to enforce this. We talked to him yesterday and asked him, ‘How are you gonna enforce this? The power of the law itself is not going to force these illegals to show up, sign up, and pay their fines.’
‘We’re going to have businesses do that. We’re going to have businesses that hire illegals find out about them and we’re going to check on the illegals before they get on the path to citizenship.’
That’s the stuff that now the Republicans are expecting to throw out in order to get Democrat support. Republicans, according to the Washington Times, ‘are pleading with the Bush administration to hold firm on these safeguards, arguing that otherwise any new guest worker program will be unworkable. John Cornyn said, ‘We need their help on that,” meaning the White House. ‘Democrats say Republicans are asking for too many restrictions and checks on illegal aliens before they can get on the path to citizenship, and object to restrictions on future guest workers… Twenty years after the 1986 amnesty, which legalized 2.7 million illegal aliens, lawsuits are still pending from some who were denied. And one in four of those granted legal status submitted fraudulent applications, according to the Center for Immigration Studies. Federal law also prevents the Social Security Administration or the Internal Revenue Service from sharing information about illegal aliens,’ sort of like we couldn’t share information on terrorists during the Clinton years between the FBI and the CIA because they would take everything to grand juries where evidence was presented, and, of course, it’s private.
So some of the things that we were told yesterday that were in here to safeguard, are already being relaxed. The Republicans and the White House are threatening. The Democrats argue that removing confidentiality and sharing information could deter illegal aliens from coming forward to join the legalization program. The Democrats are basically saying, ‘If you investigate fraud via information sharing, then the illegals may not come forward.’ I’ll tell you what, let’s make an exception for fraud, then. Let’s just make an exception for fraud. We’re doing everything else in this bill that’s cockamamie and out of the world, so let’s just excuse the fraud that exists here. We’re already excusing the illegal status. It’s like I said yesterday, the thing about this that just doesn’t make any sense is that we’re treating the illegals as though we are doing something wrong, as though we’ve been bad and we’re guilty of something. We want them to forgive us! Folks, I’m going to tell you something. If this happens, I’ve already told you that I think, as we sit here today, there is an 80% that Hillary Clinton will be the next president of the United States. If this happens, if this immigration bill goes through as the latest reports indicate that it might, we are doomed in ’08. We are doomed because this would just be the next and maybe the last straw as far as the Republican base is concerned in being able to trust Republicans that it elects to represent them because there’s not much of that happening in this particular area.
RUSH: Kate O’Beirne, National Review Online, is calling the latest incarnation of this immigration bill, ‘faith-based immigration reform,’ which is a great line, because what’s going to happen here, all of these protections that are ostensibly built in, they’re probably going to be removed. I asked Tony Snow yesterday, ‘What about these fines?’ I can just see it happening now, after this bill passes — if it does; you don’t know what’s going to happen in the House, and it may be stalled in the Senate for a while. It depends on whether the Republicans, enough of them, can raise enough ruckus in there to get the minority leader, Mitch McConnell, to demand a full and open debate on this thing, which is not happening. It’s 600 pages long.
But all these fines, I’m just going to predict to you right now that it will not be long — if this thing passes that, after awhile — people will say, ‘These fines are just too oppressive. We can’t treat these poor people this way! They’re just coming here to better their lives. We have no business!’
Well, you wrote the law!
‘I know, but we’re rethinking it now.’
This is the way it’s going to happen. This really roils the Democrats and some of the Republicans in the White House who support it, but it’s an amnesty bill. That’s the end result of it. They can argue the finer points of the definition of the term, but I don’t know. We’re doomed here, folks, if this goes through as is, because the base is a significant number and will remember this, and say, ‘We just can’t trust Republicans. There’s no reason to elect ’em.’
RUSH: Well, here it is, the AP just has the flash news alert: ‘A bipartisan group of senators and the White House have reached agreement on an immigration bill to provide quick legal status to millions of illegal immigrants.’ That’s the only detail I have now, but that’s pretty much all we need. Now, it has to go over to the House, and remember it was the House that killed this in August. Well, we don’t control the House anymore, folks! Elections have consequences. The Democrats run the House of Representatives, and who knows what will happen there. They might rubber stamp this bill, or they might have their own version, go to conference or what have you, but the Senate wanted to get this done before their Memorial Day recess. I don’t know when the House is going to take it up. The president wants it on his desk to sign by August or some such thing. Everybody is hoping that we’ll forget about this in November of ’08. Anybody that ends up supporting this, it’s going to be very, very difficult for me to support. This is a bad deal. It’s unfortunate. We just have to see what the next stage of this is and how it develops.
RUSH: Henry in Warren, Michigan, it’s nice to have you on the program, sir. Hello.
CALLER: Rush, it’s a great honor and pleasure to be on the radio with you, and thank you for taking the call.
RUSH: Thank you, sir.
CALLER: First of all — and four quick points. I’m a listener since ’88 when you were still on only two hours, and I remember one of your first calls. We had an unemployed and depressed black man that the next day called and you had a guy offer him a job. Do you remember that one particular call?
RUSH: Yes, well, maybe not that one specific but that’s happened a lot of times with this program.
CALLER: That’s what got me to listening to you, in August of ’88 when you first started.
RUSH: Yeah, that’s right. That’s when it all started. History was made that day.
CALLER: I’ll tell you what, I don’t have an older brother but in many respects I look to you as my older brother — and kind of like you listen to your dad, I kind of listened to you and grew more conservative as I’ve taken on a lot of ideas that you brought up. I’m drinking coffee out of a super soaker-induced Rush mug, if you remember those.
CALLER: What I wanted to say is this. I fear today the country, the US, is going to go 100% socialist from a political standpoint because of the floodgates. Because you import a mind-set, and that’s what they’ve actually done now with this law. If it actually gets signed by Bush, I think economically we’re going to be like Europe.
RUSH: You’re talking about the immigration bill?
RUSH: Okay. So we’re importing socialism?
CALLER: In effect, we’re giving the last vestiges of a 50-50 country. It’s now going to split. It’s going to turn over to the socialist side.
RUSH: Yeah, but we’re also exporting a lot of liberalism and screwing up the countries we’re competing with out there.
CALLER: Well, I don’t know about that.
RUSH: Yes, we are. We’ve been doing it for a long time. Wait ’til the Chinese get their own version of the NAGs. That’s going to happen.
CALLER: Okay. Last real quick point, I think I’m having a Reagan moment. Remember when Reagan said that he didn’t leave the Democratic Party, the Democratic Party left him? I had that same moment. The GOP has just left us and they’re going to hear silence on voting day because a lot of us who volunteered on the last couple of elections, that wrote checks and are voting Republican are just going to wave at the guys coming to the door and say, ‘Go somewhere else. No GOP lives here.’ I’m very disappointed.
RUSH: Not only that, if this goes through as is, the Republican Party in ’08 could well be doomed, but so could we as a country. I have this great fear that the first thing that’s going to go by the wayside in this immigration bill is the whole concept of border security, the signs are there. The fence is only going to be so big. They’ll do cursory roundups and tell us the big numbers, but it’s going to be easier for malcontents — I’m not talking about Mexicans; I’m talking about terrorists to get in here — with the relaxation here with loss of incentive to control the border, to get it. They even have a definition of legal and illegal, I don’t know. I’m troubled by it. But I don’t think the country’s finished yet because I don’t think the American people are going to put up with the country being finished, and I know that I as host am not going to put up with the country being finished, because there’s nowhere else I want to live. So we’re going to do everything we can to save the country, and I think we will. But you can do that a lot of ways other than just voting for people. You have a lot more power in your life than just who you vote for, because you can’t win every election. If you start losing them, and you get bent out of shape over losing every election, you’re defining your life by that — and there’s much, much more to life than who wins and loses elections, believe me. That’s why my success is not defined by who wins elections. It never has been, nor is it my objective.