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Thread: Senate Approves US-Mexico Border Fence Bill

  1. #1
    Repeatedly Redundant...Again
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    Default Senate Approves US-Mexico Border Fence Bill


    Kinda like closing the barn door after the cows got out, but I'll take it.
    Saturday, September 30, 2006

    Senate approves US-Mexico border fence bill

    Alexis Unkovic at 12:24 PM ET

    [JURIST] The US Senate [official website] passed the Secure Fence Act of 2006 [HR 6061 text, PDF] Friday by a vote of 80-19 [roll call], authorizing the construction of a 700-mile fence along the US-Mexico border [JURIST news archive]. President Bush is expected to sign the measure, designed to curb illegal immigration [JURIST news archive] into the United States. A key provision of the bill dictates that the US Department of Homeland Security [official website] must have "operational control" over US borders within 18 months in an effort to keep illegal substances and illegal immigrants from entering the US, while also providing for a study [JURIST report] to decide whether the government should also construct a fence along the Canadian border. A separate measure will fund construction and maintenance of the fence.

    The US House of Representatives [official website] passed [JURIST report] the border fence bill by a vote of 283-138 [roll call] September 15. The Mexican government has already expressed its opposition [JURIST report] to the scheme. AP has more. The Boston Globe has additional coverage.

  2. #2
    Repeatedly Redundant...Again
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    Default Re: Senate Approves US-Mexico Border Fence Bill

    President Bush needs to understand this 'border issue' has gone on far too long; the flood of illegal aliens needs to be stopped now.

    I'd like to see President Bush turn the Courier around, and send him back to Fox with the message that he can take the DP and shove it where the light doesn't shine.

    Fox needs to realize most Americans don't give a damn about what he wants.

    Oct. 3, 2006, 9:36AM

    Mexico implores Bush to veto border fence bill

    President likely to sign off despite the lack of plan to legalize migrants

    Copyright 2006
    Houston Chronicle Foreign Service

    MEXICO CITY - Mexico asked President Bush Monday to veto the proposed 700-mile border fence, saying it would endanger lives while doing little to halt illegal immigration.

    "The Mexican government strongly opposes the building of walls in the border area between Mexico and the United States," said Ruben Aguilar, spokesman for President Vicente Fox.

    He said Mexico's Foreign Ministry planned to send a diplomatic letter to Bush urging him to veto the bill, which passed overwhelmingly in the U.S. Senate on Friday.

    The Senate also approved the first $1.2 billion down payment on the fence, which some experts say could cost as much as $9 billion. The plan entails running a barrier along mostly rural sections of the California and Texas borders and along nearly the entire length of Arizona.

    Aguilar argued that the bill was a ploy to win votes ahead of the Nov. 7 congressional elections by exploiting Americans' security concerns.

    "In the current context, this is more a political response than a viable solution to the problem," he said.

    Bush has criticized the bill as shortsighted for not including provisions to legalize millions of undocumented migrants. But he has said he won't veto it.

    Mexican Foreign Minister Luis Ernesto Derbez acknowledged that there was only a slim chance Bush would change his mind.

    "I would say it is almost nil," he told a Mexican radio station. "What we want to do is simply make our position clear."

    At least one Mexican official sees a silver lining in the tougher U.S. immigration policies, however.

    Guillermo Ortiz, governor of the country's central bank, was quoted last week as saying that a longer fence "wouldn't be all bad." He told a Texas newspaper last week that more fences would force Mexico's government to create jobs at home, rather than relying on the demand for laborers in the United States.

    Fox has staked much of his six-year presidency on securing a comprehensive immigration reform in Washington that would include guest-worker permits — a focus once shared by Bush. But the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks shifted U.S. attention to the war on terror.

    Fox's successor, President-elect Felipe Calderon, has vowed to renew lobbying for immigration reform after he takes office Dec. 1. However, he also has said Mexico needs to do more to create jobs for its own workers.

    "Migration ... can't be reduced by decree or by physical obstacles," Calderon said Sunday night. "That only creates migrants willing to take ever-greater risks and in consequence, probably, will produce more unjust deaths along the border."

    Migrant deaths have nearly doubled in recent years, from 241 in 1999 to 472 in 2005, according to a study released in August by the U.S. Government Accountability Office. Increasingly, migrants are dying of dehydration or freezing in the Arizona desert, from 11 in 1998 to 216 last year.

    The study, commissioned by Senate majority leader Bill Frist, R-Tenn., linked the spike in mortality to the 1994 Southwest Border Strategy, which increased U.S. Border Patrol surveillance around border cities in Texas and California with the goal of pushing migrants to rural areas where they would be easier to spot and apprehend. The strategy wrongly assumed migrants wouldn't risk crossing the harsh terrain of the Arizona desert, where temperatures routinely reach 115 degrees.

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