Big corporations are eager to have their inexpensively produced Mexican or Chinese products delivered in the United States by Mexican drivers because they are paid 33 percent to 40 percent less than U.S. truckers. As Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-Calif., said, "Commercial interests are being pushed ahead of the safety and security interests of the American people."
Only 1 percent to 2 percent of trucks coming across the border are inspected. The smugglers of illegal drugs, products and people can merely consider it a cost of doing business when so few illegal loads will be caught.
The problem is not only the increased wear and tear on U.S. highways that U.S. taxpayers will subsidize, and not only the crowding of U.S. roads that will make driving less pleasant, but it's worry about safety. Anyone who does much driving on U.S. highways knows how crowded with big rigs those highways are.
The other Dubai Ports/Harriet Miers moment will be Sept 14, the first anniversary of the overwhelming, 283-138 passage in the House of the Secure Fence Act. The Senate subsequently passed it 80-19, and President Bush signed it into law on Oct. 26 in front of TV cameras.
This law ordered the government to build an 854-mile fence along our U.S.-Mexico border. After one year, the Bush administration has built only 18 miles. This failure - or refusal - to obey the law makes us believe that Bush and Secretary of Homeland Security Michael Chertoff do not intend to build the fence, and is a prime example of why the U.S. people don't trust their government. The government could hire eight construction firms to simultaneously build 100 miles of the fence and offer a bonus for the company that first completes its 100 miles.
The only rational explanation for the president's stubborn determination to override the wishes of the American people by opening up all our roads to Mexican trucks is that this is an essential part of his plan for the economic integration of the United States into a North American Community. The only rational explanation of Bush's refusal to build the fence is that he has no intention of stopping the flow of illegal immigrants across our southern border.
Phyllis Schlafly is a national leader of the pro-family movement, a nationally syndicated columnist and author of Feminist Fantasies.
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