Ira Mehlman

However, Schumer’s seeming offer of political cover for Republicans is actually an ironclad guarantee that immigration laws will not be enforced for the next three years, plus the strong likelihood that the amnesty will be even bigger than one that would go into effect immediately. Just consider: If President Obama is refusing to enforce most immigration laws now, there is virtually no chance that he will enforce laws against people who are just marking time until 2017, when their amnesty kicks in. Illegal alien advocacy groups are vociferously demanding that the administration halt most deportations based on the mere possibility that Congress will grant amnesty. Such demands would only be amplified by the reality that Congress has already granted amnesty beginning in 2017.

Even if the three-year delay did not come with formal work authorization, it would certainly come with a de facto green light to work in the U.S. Congress cannot very well pass legislation essentially telling illegal aliens to hangout while President Obama serves out the rest of his term, and expect that the president will prevent them from working while they wait.

Nobody really knows for sure how many illegal aliens are here right now, but one thing is for certain: If Republicans accept Schumer’s offer the number will be much bigger in 2017. The plan essentially gives people all around the world three years to get here and acquire some doctored pay stubs or rent receipts to demonstrate that they were here before whatever cut-off date Congress writes into the final bill.

The GOP leadership’s response to Schumer should be obvious: Talk to us in 2017. Three years is an eternity and there is no reason for Congress in 2014 to set in stone an amnesty and massive increases in immigration that may make even less sense (if that is possible) three years from now. In the meantime, the current Congress should concentrate on getting President Obama to put down his pen and his phone and start enforcing the laws that have already been passed.

Ira Mehlman

Ira Mehlman is the Media Director of the Federation for American Immigration Reform.