Border surge can be traced to pair of amnesty bills

Wednesday, March 24, 2021
Chad Groening (

CA farm workerThe surge of illegal immigrants on the border, and the chaos they have created, can be traced to Democrats and Republicans promising amnesty for millions of illegals, says an immigration watchdog.

Lawmakers in the U.S. House have rammed through two amnesty bills that would put up to five million illegal aliens on a path to U.S. citizenship, including so-called “Dreamers” and also farm workers.  

Both bills face an unknown fate in the divided Senate, where senators are expected to hear pleas to help the Dreamers and also hear pleas from Big Ag to support their farm workforce bill.

Ira Mehlman, a spokesman for the Federation for American Immigration Reform, or FAIR, says the first bill is the Orwellian-sounding “American Dream and Promise Act,” which he says helps people who are here illegally but were promised help by the Democratic Party.

“And continues to ignore,” he adds, “countless promises to the American public that we’re going to have secure borders, all kinds of things that the American public has been promised, over and over again.”


The second bill is the Farm Workforce Modernization Act, a bipartisan measure which would establish a path to legal status for immigrant farm workers through the H-2A guestworker program.

Thousands of U.S. farms rely on labor from Mexican and South American immigrants, both legal and illegal workers, who toil in backbreaking conditions.

Many are also exploited by their employers since they are working in the U.S. illegally.

The farmer workforce legislation was first introduced in the House last year, where it passed with bipartisan support, and earlier this month 24 Democrats and 20 Republicans re-introduced it. It passed 247-174, with 30 Republican lawmakers supporting it.

According to the Idaho Press newspaper, 34 agriculture-related groups in that agriculture-based state have supported the farm bill since it was introduced in 2019 by the state’s Republican congressman, Rep. Mike Simpson.

According to Mehlman, the farm bill ensures that U.S. agriculture will continue to use “low wage, stoop labor” when the rest of the world is moving toward mechanized harvesting.

"USA Border" sign“So there's obviously tremendous pressure from special interests,” he says, “but these are not priorities for the American public."

After the bill passed last week, an advocate for illegal immigrants told a CBS News affiliate that requiring employers to use e-verify harms farm workers who are in the country illegally.

“An e-verify system would be very punitive to workers that have been here undocumented looking for a better life,” the immigrant advocate, Edgar Franks, told KIMA.  

Mehlman predicts it all now comes down to the Senate.

"Unless [Senator] Chuck Schumer decides to scrap the cloture and allow a bill to come to the floor with less than sixty votes," he says, "it's not going to go anywhere in the Senate."

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