Two Cheers for Sen. Harry Reid!

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Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has decided to add language to the Defense authorization bill that would give young illegal immigrants a path to citizenship if they have been in the United States for longer than five years. To qualify, they also must have come to the country before the age of 16 and have completed at least two years of college or two years in the military.

"We have large numbers of our military who are Hispanic," Reid said Tuesday in the Capitol. "I think it's really important that we move forward on this legislation . . . Kids who grew up as Americans should be able to get their green cards after they go to college or serve in the military."

More here.

I suspect that I dislike Harry Reid, a.k.a. "The Human Ambien," more than most people, but I like his pitch above. I don't like that he's attaching it to a defense authorization but that's how crap gets done in D.C.

And as a double mitzvah, the Mormon from Searchlight, Nevada is also pushing for a repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," one of the most misguided and useless policies in recent memory.

Illegal immigrants who show that they've come here to work or (god forbid!) serve in the military or even those who go to college should have a path to citizenship. The day the U.S. is deporting hard-working non-criminals is the day that we've jumped the shark as an "experiment" worth caring about.

Is Reid pandering in a desperate attempt to get reelected? You bet he is, but again, that's how stuff gets done in D.C. And I'd rather he pander on the side of the angels than what he did back in 1993, when he called illegals "free loaders and scam artists" and wanted to kick them way out of the country.

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  1. Just curious…are you telling me that illegal aliens without proper documentation are somehow getting into ther military? WTF, over?

    1. Given that the Selective Service requires that illegal aliens register for the draft, I would hope the military would be more than happy to have them show up voluntarily.

      1. I know, but am I the only person who finds this (and that) just slightly surreal> BTW…the Firesign theatre did an excellent “alien registration” spoof some years back. Wish I could remember the album.

        1. If the military does its background checks properly, then I don’t find it surreal. They are people who want to live in the US and serve in its military. Fine.

          In particular, I don’t find it as surreal as people whose families were imprisoned and their property confiscated when they were actually American citizens serving in the military in World War II.

          1. There’s actually a code used by the military to identify when foreign born service members aren’t supposed to see something. It’s call “NOFORN” which stands for “NO FOReign Nationals” and is attached to various items of low but still important National Security value.

            1. I’m not sure if you just misspoke, or if you have the wrong conception. As you say, NOFORN is for NO FOReign Nationals.

              US Citizens, regardless of foreign birth, are not Foreign Nationals. NOFORN does not apply to foreign born US citizens.

              NOFORN may also be attached to classified documents of very important national security value, to indicate that they cannot be shared with even our closest allies.

              1. The “NOFORN” can be found on Top Secret and all the way down to run of the mill paperwork. Yes, it applies to our allies BUT it also applies to foreign born service members who haven’t gotten citizenship yet! Who are quite common in the service!

                1. Yes, it applies to our allies BUT it also applies to foreign born service members who haven’t gotten citizenship yet!

                  Of course, because it applies to all foreign nationals. It doesn’t apply to foreign born US citizens, though, which is why the original post was misleading.

      2. Um, no. You have to be a US Citizen or a Permenant Resident Alien to serve in the US military (there have recently been programs to allow non-resident aliens to serve if they are in a critical skill, ie linguists or medical professional).

        Now, it is possible (probable) that an illegal immigrant has managed to join the military at some point in time via some form of fraud being conducted by the person or the recruiter.

    2. According to a military lawyer interviewed on NPR a while back, military recruiters are required to accept all qualified candidates. Immmigration status is nota disqualifier.

      Back in the days of the draft, all males between certain ages living in the US, regardless of immmigration status, had to be registered with the Selective Service System. Illegals were not excempt from being drafted.

    3. Illegals? Not really. MOST of the immigrants in the military are enlisted under various LEGAL provisions BUT there are SOME illegals in uniform. Before you go off half-cocked, keep in mind that foreign nationals CANNOT have ANY security clearance and are limited to mostly grunt work (infantry, clerical, logistics, etc.)

      Even in today’s shitty economy the military has a hard time meeting recruitment goals and immigrants are a good way to pad out the numbers especially since INS has been giving uniformed immigrants preference for years now.

      When I was in the Navy, I attended no less than a DOZEN citizenship ceremonies over ten years for my various buddies who had gotten fast tracked for being in uniform. Often they were more preferable to work with than a lot of our native born kids because these guys/gals fucking understood that putting your ass on the line for Uncle Sam in hopes of becoming a citizen was an opportunity that was way better than living in Kenya, Egypt, Venezuela, Tonga, Mexico, and the Philippines.

      I knew immigrant sailors from each of those countries and several from the Philippines. If the government were to stop letting Filipinos in, then the US Navy would grind to a fucking halt within a week!

      1. Or at the very least the officers would starve to death in their wardrooms.

  2. Oh, yeah…First!

  3. I don’t like that he’s attaching it to a defense authorization but that’s how crap gets done in D.C.

    The fact that this is how things get done in D.C. is in no small part why I intensely dislike Reid (and pretty much every one on of his colleagues).

    1. This.

      Vote out all incumbents, until these clowns get the message that
      “that’s not how crap gets done”.

    2. Yes. It’s also the reason we’re on an unsustainable course to economic collapse.

      I’m shocked that Nick would give a thumbs up to statist behavior, as statist is how things have been done for quite a while.

      The reason *DRINK* that Reid is behaving this way is that people are going to kick his ass out of office.

      Every politician should feel this way all the time.

      1. Every politician should feel this way all the time.

        They shouldn’t even get real offices anymore. We just build 600+ dunk tanks, one per elected representative. And then a big bin of softballs for tossin. Get dunked and you’re fired.

  4. I don’t care what it is, I don’t like when bills are attached to other bills.
    If everything was separate nothing would get done in DC… and that would be a good thing.

    1. “Wait a second, I want to tack on a rider to that bill – $30 million of taxpayer money to support the perverted arts.”

      1. If “support the perverted arts” translates to “send that money to Cyto”, you’ve got my full support….and I promise to put it to good use.

  5. We already fast track immigrants who serve in the military. What would this change?

    1. This would fast-track the ones who came here illegally and used falsified documentation to get into the military.

  6. Even in today’s shitty economy the military has a hard time meeting recruitment goals

    I keep getting mixed messages on this. Any good links?

    And why would spending two years in college somehow make you a better candidate for citizenship? If anything, marinating in Marxism-lite and crypto-anti-American ideologies for two years would seem to cut the other way.

    1. The military has not had a hard time meeting its recruiting targets since 2008, and it hasn’t missed a retention target in ages. Right now the Army has enough people in the pipeline it could cease recruiting operations for the next six months and not miss its mission.

      1. and not miss its mission.

        Which is….

      2. Only because we have been playing “push out the margins” since 2003 or so. Felony waivers are way up, the required ASVAB score is down, the maximum age for both enlistment and officer candidacy have gone up. education requirements have gone down, bonuses have gone up, and promotions of marginally qualified enlisted and officers is up.

        In other words, we have considerably weakened the force to “meet” the retention/recruiting goals. Also, at least on the Army Reserve side, we have lied to Congress more than once about our end-strength.

        1. And lest we forget, standards in general are down. People who I would not have recommend for Sergeant are receiving commissions, tattoos on the face and hands are not disqualifiers any longer (and what a shame, too, because there are some nasty hoodrats and PWT with trashy, trashy face tats), I have not seen anyone chaptered for APFT failure, ever, and “failures to adapt” are almost non-existent as well.

  7. My problem with this approach is the direct conflict with the last “amnesty” program. Remember how it was going to be really, really the last amnesty? Remember how everyone agreed that after this, there’s no more free passes if you are illegal? Remember how the language of the amnesty bill guaranteed that there would never be another amnesty? Apparently the “word” of the US government is worth jack shit.

    They’ve got this whole thing ass-backward. They need to reform immigration policy to allow more legal immigrants – now! Then the problem of illegal immigration magically vanishes. If you remove quotas completely, then there is no “jumping the line” advantage… the entire conflict goes away. Now all you have to do is make sure the welfare state can’t be overwhelmed. I think current immigration standards handle this as well, so that pretty much covers it. I don’t know why this bunch of ass-hats can’t understand such a simple equation. It is the same simple logic for handling the problem of drug and prostitution related crime… oh, wait…

    1. I don’t see how you can have a “final” amnesty until the barriers to legal entry have been significantly reduced.

  8. “This here is my finger-bangin’ finger. It ain’t cheatin’ if you just stick a finger in his ass. I mean ‘her’ ass. ‘Her.’… My wives are gonna kill me.”

  9. This is stupid. Everyone knows that our immigration system, you know, the one for people to immigrate and become citizens legally, could use some work. Streamlining and such. I’d be in favor of a pretty in-depth reworking of the system.

    But no, let’s not touch that. Instead, let’s just reward everyone who breaks the law to get in here. Yes, THAT will solve our illegal immigration problem.

    1. At least they have displayed some cleverness and initiative. 🙂

  10. Once again, for a fairly smart guy, Nick Gillespie races forward to display his idiocy.

    You cannot have open borders, though we should, until you end welfare redistribution (Medicare, Social Security, Medicaid, SNAP, TANF, Section 8).

    With open borders, it’s impossible to get a handle on the actuarial science needed to make socialist welfare schemes work.

    When Nick Gillespie champions the plight of illegal aliens, er immigrants, he turns into an idiot, instantly.

    Is Nick a secret operative of totalitarian socialism?

    1. With open borders, it’s impossible to get a handle on the actuarial science needed to make socialist welfare schemes work.

      Do the state of the borders really matter? That “science” will never work, no matter what.

    2. You cannot have open borders, though we should, until you end welfare redistribution (Medicare, Social Security, Medicaid, SNAP, TANF, Section 8).

      …unless you make immigrants ineligible for welfare redistribution.

      Sorry the solution is so easy.

      1. Pretty sure most welfare programs are technically not allowed to be used by illegal immigrants. Yet it happens anyway.

  11. The first comment here is the most important one. I am not saying that some illegal immigrants have not lied their way into the armed forces. It is possible. But it has to be a miniscule number and the reason Reid included that is to score political points. As to people that are working here, paying taxes, and want to stay here, I agree they should be given that opportunity. However, you have to stop the illegal immigration first. Or else we will be paying for the social services of many millions who are not paying taxes, or who are here just temporarily.

    1. However, you have to stop the illegal immigration first. Or else we will be paying for the social services of many millions who are not paying taxes, or who are here just temporarily.

      Alternatively, we can stop paying for social services for immigrants. Then we don’t care whether they are legal or illegal.

      Indeed, since illegal immigrants and short-term legal immigrants don’t get targeted social services, it will be easier to legalize them all once we get rid of social services for medium- and long-term legal immigrants too.

  12. Two considerations this article overlooks:
    1. Service in the Military has always been a “path to citizenship”.
    2. One billion illegals is too large a number to absorb. What is the appropriate number? Apologists for illegal immigrants like to avoid this issue because it raises practical questions of overloaded infrastructure and collapse of social services.

    1. One billion illegals is too large a number to absorb.

      That’s a relief.

      I was afraid you’d say that a number a fiftieth of that was too much to absorb. But the way you put it, the US has nothing to worry about.

    2. One billion illegals is too large a number to absorb. What is the appropriate number? Apologists for illegal immigrants like to avoid this issue

      OK, a billion is too many. Now you call me when that happens, mkay?

      1. Maybe we should be proactive just this once.

  13. How many of you would want to serve next to someone in the military that was only there to get their citizenship? Not to say that is not commendable but I would not want that if I was a volunteer military member.

    I find it very disturbing that we are going out of our way to try and figure out how to help people who’s first act in coming to America was breaking our laws. I guess crime does pay after all.

  14. You are only allowed to enlist in the US military if you are a citizen or hold a residency card (i.e. green card). The only exceptions to this are a very limited number of personnel brought in via special recruiting due to their skill set (usally language). All of whom are carefully cleared and screened.

    Illegal aliens are not allowed to join the military.

    Period.

    Lying about your immigration status to a military recruiter for the purpose of joining the US armed forces is a felony offense.

    The lawyer interviewed on NPR was talking out of his ass.

  15. Everyone is focused on the miltrary part – what about the only needing 2 years of college? This is basically amnesty. Sorry just because they “show up to work” whatever that means. (why else would they come here except to make money).
    I still don’t see why they get preference over people who go though the right channels to get here. Immigrant is great, and yes the system sucks but that’s what the system is. You shouldn’t be given an advantage for cheat/breaking the system. Sorry.

    “give young illegal immigrants a path to citizenship if they have been in the United States for longer than five years. To qualify, they also must have come to the country before the age of 16 and have completed at least two years of college or two years in the military.”

  16. “give young illegal immigrants a path to citizenship if they have been in the United States for longer than five years. To qualify, they also must have come to the country before the age of 16 and have completed at least two years of college”

    And what does this path to cotizenship entail? Is it less onerous than the regular version of first getting a green card and then getting the citizenship?

  17. Remind me again why I should cheer having to provide 2 years of college instruction to someone who wasn’t entitled to the primary education they received at my expense. This is just more “open-borders” bullshit from Nick Gillespie. When he, and the rest of the “citizen-of-the-world” crowd, steps up to pay the bill, then I’ll cheer.

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  19. I am a naturalized citizen who went through the long and painful legal immigration process to become a permanent resident and then a citizen and am familiar with the immigration system (alas).

    As many above have pointed out, the US military does not allow illegal immigrants to enlist. The military provision of this bill is a red herring, since almost no illegals will be allowed to join the US military. Instead, the two years of college – possibly at taxpayer expense – will be used to legalize a large number of illegal aliens. Which will then set a precedent and create an avenue for the continuing illegal immigration of large numbers of illegal alien minors.

    What a wonderful way to run a country’s immigration system! Burden the law abiding and reward the law breakers whose first act in coming to the US was to break its laws.

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