2006 May 17 Wednesday
Senate Amnesty Bill Gains Fence Provision

In exchange for an amnesty coupled with a huge increase in legal immigration the US Senate has agreed to fencing a limited portion of the US-Mexico border.

The measure calling for an additional 370 miles of fencing and 500 miles of vehicle barriers carried by 83 to 16. Since the House of Representatives has already approved some 700 miles of additional fencing, it is likely that whatever immigration legislation emerges from the full Congress will provide for extra barriers. The Senate fence measure was embodied in an amendment offered by Senator Jeff Sessions, Republican of Alabama, who borrowed from the poet Robert Frost. "Good fences make good neighbors," he said. "Fences don't make bad neighbors."

Senator Jeff Sessions (R AL) says the triple layer fence will cost $3.2 million per mile.

The fence would be built in areas "most often used by smugglers and illegal aliens," as determined by federal officials. Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., estimated the cost at roughly $3.2 million per mile, more than $900 million for 300 miles.

At that cost we could build a barrier fence along the entire US-Mexico border for about $6.2 billion dollars.

By comparison the private Minuteman border defense group thinks it can build its fence design for below $150 per foot. At 5280 feet per mile that works out to $792,000 per mile, about a quarter of the cost per mile for the federal project.

The folks at the Minuteman Civil Defense Corps are not impressed by Bush's token National Guard deployment to the border.

(PHOENIX, AZ) May 15, 2006 – News reports detailing President Bush’s gesture to “consider” sending the National Guard to the southern frontier reveal the plan to be nothing more than a political ploy. White House National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley on Sunday news shows explained the administration’s plan: "It's about assisting the civilian Border Patrol in doing their job, providing intelligence, providing support, logistics support and training and these sorts of things.”

Chris Simcox, President of the Minuteman Civil Defense Corps released the following statement:

“Sending unarmed troops to assist the Border Patrol with logistics consisting of paper-pushing and vehicle maintenance is exactly what Arizona Governor Janet Napolitano has done as a vacant political scheme during an election year. President Bush’s political maneuver will do nothing more than place career desk jockeys and support personnel in a very dangerous environment—and will greatly anger the American people. We do not take lightly those who try to take us for fools.

“President Bush must not continue to sacrifice America’s national security and public safety to demands by our ‘good friend and partner’ Vicente Fox, whose corrupt officials are in the pockets of international crime syndicates. We need U.S. troops on the ground now, actually standing guard over our embattled border. We have enough ‘intelligence’ already to know that the Mexican government is facilitating drug and human trafficking into this country and encouraging the hemisphere’s poor, by the millions, to pay not just coyotes, but Mexican police, military and bureaucrats, to sneak into this country illegally and send $50 billion per year back to Mexico.

“The perilous state of our national borders is well documented: Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff has admitted the federal government does not have operational control of our borders; border sheriffs have testified that international criminal cartels have turned their territory into a virtual war zone; border governors have declared states of emergency and deployed resources to protect their states and Border Patrol agents have said repeatedly they are undermanned, under-equipped and outgunned. To send unarmed troops to the border in a support role is a travesty—a gross dereliction of duty.

“Among various other excuses, the Bush administration will claim that the Posse Comitatus Act does not allow for troops at the border for ‘law enforcement’ purposes’—which might be relevant if the crisis before America were merely one of LAW ENFORCEMENT, rather than NATIONAL SECURITY. America is at war abroad, she is in peril at home with her own frontiers being breached by a flood of unidentified aliens entering illegally and clandestinely, and President Bush need only sign an Executive Order to begin the long overdue federal action to respond competently to the national security threat these incursions present to our nation.

“Instead he proposes to perhaps send some National Guard mechanics, to help patch up the holes shot in our Border Patrol jeeps by the Mexican Army.

“The Minutemen will continue to stand our posts and monitor activities on the ground until the border is truly and actually secured from foreign invasion.”

A formidable barrier would reduce the number of soldiers or Border Patrolmen needed per mile.

Update: If you want to contact your US Senators to express your displeasure at their plan to deluge the United States with tens of millions of immigrants in the next 20 years then you can find the web sites of each US Senator in this list. Similarly, you can find contact information for your US House Representative here.

Share |      By Randall Parker at 2006 May 17 10:27 PM  Immigration Border Barrier

John S Bolton said at May 18, 2006 2:42 AM:

Mexico-firsters in high places are getting rattled, and being shown defiance, and made to hear the command of the nation to defend against this foreign aggression.
Would Bush rather be impeached, than give to the majority the defense of the borders which they have every right to insist upon?
Rove is sounding the alarm that the president, and other top officials are at high risk of impeachment, if the democrats come back in to their committee chairmanships.
Are we to rally to their defense, and go all out for the republican candidates this year; when they will not defend us from foreign aggression?
When they continue to put Mexican interests ahead of the obligation to go to the defense of our fellow citizen, such as the net taxpayer, when he is attacked by foreign hostiles running loose here?
It is actually the congress and the White House which must now give abundantly, and most emphatically on those issues where opinion elites differ most dramatically from the majority. Not only the illegal alien, but the UN, must take a hard fall.

delen said at May 18, 2006 6:44 AM:

Must kinda' sting when the Sensenbruner bait and switch bites ya' in the butt. BTW was he sober when came up with the felons idea?
And if the UN is so bad why don't we simply drop out, after all we are the only country in that unholy cabal that matters and it would not operate without us. Make it campaign issue, how much money are those ingrates sucking from us yearly?

Devils' Advocate said at May 18, 2006 7:21 AM:

$3.2 million per mile? Hey, got to keep the taxpayer's money rolling into Halliburton's coffers.

Andal said at May 18, 2006 9:08 AM:

Look, you're just going to have to get over the brown people being in this country.

The president and his corporate buddies need the cheap labor.

So be a good patriot and shut up.

(Vicente) Fox Hound said at May 18, 2006 9:21 AM:

Does anyone want to go to amazon.com and send Bush and all these limp-wristed politicians a copy of The Camp of Saints?

Randall Parker said at May 18, 2006 4:50 PM:

John Bolton,

This whole thing ultimately is going to be decided by how far the American people turn against immigration. The trends in the polls are in a very favorable direction for immigration restrictionists. Our elites are mostly traitors. But the talk show hosts are definitely turning against immigration. The public is. I'm optimistic. Though the demographic damage already done is quite large.

Dave said at May 18, 2006 7:04 PM:

Randall, if both your main parties want the same thing how can you turn it around? sorry I don't know much about the American system, but it doesnt seem like you have much choices to stop what is going on?

CS said at May 19, 2006 1:00 AM:

Vote in primaries for restrictionist Republicans. Promise to turf out individual Congresscritters who vote for amnesty, regardless of how bad their opponents may be.

John S Bolton said at May 19, 2006 2:02 AM:

So the government admits they can build a border defense for $3 million a mile, $6 billion total. Isn't that less than what it costs federally to keep border hospitals open, over the term of the amortization period for the fencing?

John S Bolton said at May 20, 2006 12:19 AM:

If there are over 100,000 illegal aliens in federal prisons, at $30,000+ per year; this would be over $3 billion a year, to be saved, not long after such a fence was completed. They turn over at some rate, and come mainly overland from the countries to the south. The governemtn can't make a better investment than that, unless it were to deport illegals or untenable permanent residents, of foreign origin.
Is anyone surprised that democratic legislators are now saying that opposition to rewarding of illegal immigration is racism?
Hopefully this will get publicized; that the illegal-immigrationists and mass immigrationists, and amnesty-mongers, have no rational arguments for their cause.
If they had one, such as that current immigration cohorts were net taxpayers, wouldn't they tell us that, rather than that loyalty to our fellow Americans is racism?

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