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Hillary has her come-to-Jesus moment

By Michael Bates
web posted April 3, 2006

Today's reading is from the Book of Clinton, Chapter Two for the Price of One, Verse 2008.

"Thus saith the angel Hillary regarding the immigration bill passed by the House last December that would make it a felony to be in this country unlawfully:

'It is certainly not in keeping with my understanding of the Scriptures, because this bill would literally criminalize the Good Samaritan and probably even Jesus himself.'"

When the Clintons start sounding like Pat Robertson, the situation is grave. It was during the dark days of impeachment that Bill would orchestrate photo ops of him walking out of church lugging a book about the size of a laptop computer. Just so we wouldn't miss the point, he'd hold it so the words "Holy Bible" could be captured by the cameras.

Mrs. Clinton has dazzled us with her theological expertise before. In 1999 she said that at Christmas, "We are celebrating the birth of a homeless child." Those who actually read the Bible, rather than merely using it as a prop, know that Jesus wasn't homeless.

The Holy Family was traveling from their home in Nazareth and couldn't find a place to stay. The reason they were in Bethlehem was because the emperor had issued a decree that everyone had to return to his home town to be taxed, something with which Mrs. Clinton has considerable acquaintance.

But now she is invoking the name of Jesus to demonstrate her opposition to making it a felony to be in the United States illegally. Her ire is better directed at her Democratic House colleagues. They're the ones who kept the felony provision in the bill.
The legislation's chief sponsor, Wisconsin Republican James Sensenbrenner, acquiesced to Bush administration requests in December and introduced an amendment that would make unlawful presence here a misdemeanor rather than a felony.

When the Sensenbrenner amendment came to a vote, 191 House Democrats voted against it. Only eight favored it. By contrast, Republicans favored the amendment 156 to 65.

So why did Democrats, including many who are unyieldingly opposed to tightening criminal penalties, vote to keep it a felony? Congressman Sensenbrenner explained:

"Mr. Speaker, throughout this debate, both yesterday and today, my friends on the minority side have been doing their best to try to make this bill unworkable, one of which was their almost unanimous support for keeping the penalties for illegal presence in the United States as a felony. Let me tell you that even though my amendment to reduce those penalties was voted down largely by people on the other side of the aisle, when this bill gets to conference, those penalties will be made workable. You can count on that."

The Border Protection, Antiterrorism, and Illegal Immigration Control Act in its final form passed the House with the support of 36 Democrats. Had they switched the way they voted, the bill that "would literally criminalize the Good Samaritan and probably even Jesus himself" would have failed.

Mrs. Clinton's shift on the issue is noteworthy. It wasn't so long ago that she forcefully declared she was "adamantly opposed to illegal immigrants." But in a statement posted on her Senate Internet site earlier this month, illegal immigrants have miraculously been transformed into "undocumented workers."

A big problem with those undocumented workers is we don't know how many there are, who they are, where they are, or what their intentions are. Maybe they're here to earn money for their families. Or maybe they're here to kill Americans.
Even setting aside legitimate security concerns, the billions of dollars illegal immigrants cost us for medical care, education and other benefits are constantly increasing.

Talk of guest worker provisions makes no sense to me. A guest is someone you invite into your house, not someone who's invaded it.

We're told that many illegal immigrants are working at jobs that Americans won't do. Is that it, or is it that by being here they've driven wages down to a point where the jobs are undesirable, in comparison to welfare, to many citizens? Yet we don't see Congress demanding an examination of whether welfare benefits are too generous in some instances.

Politicians including Mrs. Clinton and the President use soaring rhetoric to acknowledge that immigrants have benefited the nation. Ignored is that usually those contributions were made by people who followed the rules and came in legally, not by individuals whose first act in the US was to break the law by entering. I see no reason to reward criminals with any form of amnesty.

Foreigners coming here used to adapt to American ways. They accepted our language and customs. They embraced our culture and values. That's not the way it is now. They march and demand we change to accommodate them.

Mrs. Clinton can contend a crackdown on illegal immigration conflicts with the Good Book, but there's one question I'd ask her:

How Christian is national suicide?

Mike Bates is the author of Right Angles and Other Obstinate Truths. This essay appeared in the March 30, 2006 Oak Lawn Reporter.

 

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