Border security ‘compromise’ far short of solution
It was called a border security compromise.
But the bill signed by President Donald Trump Friday seemed to have a lot more give on his side than by Democratic lawmakers.
In the end, Trump has gotten enough funding to construct another 55 miles of wall, which is an absolutely necessary at stretches of our nation’s southern border. But even that carries unrealistic restrictions with it that ignore the realities outlined by professionals working on the border.
He is hoping a national emergency declaration and accessing of existing funds for more border security construction will make up for some of the lopsided compromise.
Trump’s opponents are promising legal challenges to block these moves.
The real losers in all of this wrangling are the American people, those who want to legally immigrate here with the correct intention and those here illegally who are stuck in limbo from a broken immigration system.
All of them would benefit from an immigration system that works on a number of levels.
Corrective measures – many of which have been backed by Democrats in the past – would:
• Better secure unprotected parts of the southern border in a variety of ways.
• Allow spread-too-thin border agents to better channel their efforts at ports of entry and other areas where illegal drug trade and human trafficking are a daily routine.
• Beef up the legal apparatus to more quickly process legal immigrants and those legitimately seeking asylum in this country.
• Give a better path to citizenship for those here illegally who have the right intentions when it comes to assimilating in this country.
The shame of this is that lawmakers more interested in sabotaging than improving the immigration system missed a golden opportunity at overdue reform that would have been good for all parties impacted by the immigration puzzle.
Trump’s emergency declaration was his only means left to seek a fit for all those stubborn puzzle pieces.
While immediate legal action was promised to block the emergency declaration, the claims of a brand new precedent being set would seem to be inaccurate. President Clinton used the emergency declaration 17 times during his eight years. President Obama used the emergency declaration 12 times in his eight years. This is Trump’s second usage of the declaration in 26 months in office.
We can argue semantics, but Trump is hardly breaking new ground with an emergency declaration.
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi never miss an opportunity to poke holes in Trump’s assertions of a humanitarian crisis and Friday was no exception.
If they are so certain of its nonexistence, they should have no problem going to the border themselves and observing the chain of caravans and daily chaos that they are promoting.
As we track several caravans triggered by a weak immigration system and several thousand people attempting to negotiate our border without going through a process, not to mention illegal drug trade and human trafficking, words like national emergency and humanitarian crisis certainly seem like the correct description for the situation.