In an uncharacteristically realistic response to President Bush, Senate leaders agreed to start the ball rolling again on a major immigration reform bill. Pigeon-holed since early June, the comprehensive immigration bill received a $4.4 billion prod yesterday when President Bush called for immediate fiscal commitment to secure the US – Mexico border.

Two of the major contributors to illegal immigration are the ease of passage our southern border allows and the opportunity for employment and increased quality of life. Seeking to address these issues, the bill’s current form calls for exponentially increased border security and severe crackdowns on companies found to employ illegal aliens. So far, so good, but many in Congress are against other portions of the proposed legislation.

House Speaker, Nancy Pelosi, and other liberals are concerned about provisions concerning family considerations in deciding who can immigrate. On the other side of the aisles, many conservatives are concerned with proposed guest worker visas which would engender legal status to many currently illegal residents.

None of these partisans take the time to adequately address the tremendous drain placed on our public education facilities that are required to provide “Free, appropriate public education” to any students who happen to be in the classroom, regardless of whether they speak English. Nor do they tackle the Emergency Room crisis facing nearly every American city with a substantial immigrant population.

Our legislators should take a cue from American History and consider what happened the last time a large immigrant population came to this continent and refused to speak the language. That population was from Europe and we just about annihilated the Native Americans.

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