John Feehery: Speaking Engagements


Immigration Reform Compromise

Posted on April 29, 2010
The new law in Arizona should be seen less through the prism of politics or constitutional law and more through the lens of national psychology.  It really is a cri de coeur, or a cry from the heart.

The law may seem punitive or intrusive from the ACLU’s perspective.  But as I have said before, desperate times require desperate measures.

You only need to glance over the border and see the situation that is unfolding in Mexico to understand that the people of Arizona are panicking that the drug war, like a swarm of killer bees, is coming to a location near them.

Arizonans read stories like this and it makes them rightfully concerned:  “Gunmen killed more than 20 people -- eight in one slaying -- on Wednesday in one of the bloodiest days of the year. There were multiple shootings outside a nightclub, outside a convenience store and outside an elementary school as the violence flared up with fury. Juárez police reported shootings as the night wore on, but it was not immediately known how many were dead. One news outlet dubbed the event 'Black Wednesday.' More than 40 homicides have occurred since Monday despite a heavy presence of federal police and soldiers in the city.”

Democrats like to say that the crime rate in Arizona isn’t that bad.  Tell that to the 70% of the people of Arizona who support a law that is incredibly unpopular elsewhere in the country.  They think the crime situation is very bad and getting worse.  And they are right.

I am not an expert in immigration law, but here is the Feehery compromise on immigration reform:

  • Send the National Guard down to secure the border.

  • Send reinforcements to the Mexican government to help them wipe out the drug gangs.

  • Give all immigrants who have been in the U.S. for ten years (and can prove it) a quick path to citizenship.

  • Give all immigrants who have been here for 5 years (and can prove it) a chance to get citizenship if they go home first and apply.

  • Give all immigrants who have a PhD (especially in Physics, Math, or Engineering) and who have been here for 5 years, an even quicker and easier way to get citizenship.

  • Any immigrants who have felony convictions in the United States or are in any way associated with criminal gangs should be immediately deported.

  • All immigrants who apply for citizenship must pass a proficiency exam in English in order to get to qualify for it.

  • English should be recognized officially as the primary language of the United States.

  • The Farm worker program should be expanded and simplified (we can’t pick the crops without them).

We need to get moving on immigration reform.  We need to secure the border.  We need to help the Mexicans in their terrible war of attrition.  We need to make America safe again.  And we need to help the people of Arizona, not demonize them.