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  • Questions for Secretary Napolitano: Drug Cartels and Immigration

    DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano is tentatively scheduled to testify before the United States Senate Judiciary Committee about DHS immigration enforcement policies on May 6, 2009. Given Secretary Napolitano’s novel interpretations of federal law, the Heritage Foundation will be posting a series of questions (and suggested answers) for the Secretary.

    Question # 4: The Obama Administration has recently announced new efforts to tackle the drug cartel problem on the southern border. Will this new emphasis on drug cartels mean a lesser emphasis on the problem of illegal immigration and have the effect of curtailing immigration enforcement efforts?

    Approximately 11 million illegal aliens live in the United States. About 375,000 people enter the U.S. illegally through gaps in the southern border each year. Once in the U.S., illegal aliens often do not feed the tax system, but put a major strain on government services, such as for health care and education. Particularly hard-hit are state and local governments, which often bear the burden of footing the bill. Illegal aliens in California have cost the state between $9 billion and $38 billion in public services. The state of Texas has estimated that the bill for illegal immigrant hospital care was as much as $1.3 billion in 2006.

    The Pew Hispanic Center noted that the heightened enforcement incited worry among illegal immigrants and could have induced many to leave the country on their own. Most importantly, the study notes that, for the first time in decades, the number of incoming illegal immigrants is less than the number of immigrants entering the country as legal permanent residents.

    The increase in illegal immigrants, however, is not solely due to undocumented people crossing the border. A significant portion of illegal immigrants in the United States is comprised of individuals who entered the country with valid visas but failed to leave before their visas had expired. Overstays account for at least 31 percent of the illegal immigrants in the U.S. An aggressive interior enforcement policy is the only method capable of dealing with these illegal immigrants. Failure to do so – even if the border can be totally sealed (which it can’t) – will result in an increase in illegal immigrants who overstay their visa as the demand remains for a reduced supply, thereby driving the pay of that labor higher.

    DHS will continue to enforce America’s immigration laws and maintains controlling illegal immigration as one of its top priorities. DHS understands that doing something about illegal immigration is a fundamental part of tackling the drug cartel problems at the southern border. The same people who smuggle drugs into the United States are the same folks smuggling humans into the United States. You cannot tackle one without stopping the other.

    For more information on Heritage’s border security and immigration enforcement strategies please see, 15 Steps to Better Border Security: Reducing America’s Southern Exposure, as well as Next Steps for Immigration Reform and Workplace Enforcement.

    Posted in Security [slideshow_deploy]

    14 Responses to Questions for Secretary Napolitano: Drug Cartels and Immigration

    1. Brittancus says:

      Change nothing! ADD AMENDMENTS! Just rigidly enforce the 1986 Simpson/Mazzoli bill, the Immigration Reform & Control Act. Demand Politicians enforce the above and the E-Verify system mandated. The job magnet will disappear and Illegal Immigrants will go home, opening jobs for Americans. Too much to comment on, regarding the Illegal alien invasion and it's cultural, language, society and financial consequences. Find the ugly answers of taxes, costs, environment and OVERPOPULATION at these websites.

      If you really want to fight back? Locate these websites. VDARE, FAIRUS, JUDICIALWATCH, NUMBERSUSA, AMERICANPATROL, CAPSWEB & DARK SIDE OF ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION & ALIPAC are websites to read the truth, not open border lies. JOBS FOR AMERICANS NOT FOR CHEAP LABOR! NO MONEY FOR SANCTUARY STATES! DEMAND MORE INTENSE IMMIGRATION RAIDS! NO FREE RIDES FOR PREDATORY BUSINESSES! NO HIGHER EDUCATION FOR ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS!

    2. Zak, Utah says:

      I am an immigrant to this wonderful nation, I come from an island in the pacific toiled by hardships and never ending political unrests. I was fortunate to receive a student visa to study in the US. I’ve graduated with two Bachelor degrees and a Masters degree and I am licensed in my line of work. I am a permanent resident of the USA; I am working towards getting my Citizenship. I have a great job, I own a home and I pay my taxes.

      Now as an immigrant who waited in line and went through the ardent labor of getting my papers done, and in the correct manner, I feel lambasted when I see those that came into the country illegally trying to bypass the system already set in place. I feel my as if all those years of going about and filing the right way has all been wasted. Many more people outside of South and Central America are going about getting their papers the right way. I have many Japanese colleagues who graduate with Masters Degrees but are forced to go back to Japan because their papers aren’t in order. These are well educated and qualified individuals who deserve to stay here. Like me, they came here the right way, learned English, speak it flawlessly but have to leave because of immigration policy that do not support the intellectual but favor low cost labor.

      I feel that special interest groups cater only to their own needs and not think about others who walk the fine line and follow the letter of the law. If nothing is done to stop the inflow of under educated labor, we could we looking at providing for a lower class that will only strain social services and increase tax on the average Joe who works hard and pays their fair share of taxes.

    3. Bettybb, San Jose, C says:

      The Pew Hispanic Center estimates allmost all illegals are Hispanic.

      Why should Hispanics who are breaking the law be given preferential immigration treatment over people who are attempting to come to our country legally of all other races and ethnic groups?

      Why should Hispanic American families be given a greater right to family reunification in terms of number of family members allowed in, timing of arrival, and conditions of entry, over American families of all other races and ethnic groups?

      Illegal aliens commit crimes. Illegal entry is a crime. ID theft, document fraud, tax evasion are all felonies – Americans and legal immigrants spend a long time in jail for those crimes.

      Preferential immigration treatment for Hispanics is RACISM.

      No one in America should be above the law.

    4. American Patriot says:

      Why are youll showing this research???

      The Immigration Policy Center (IPC) has released a wide-ranging review of academic and government data that shows what legalizing undocumented immigrants would mean for the U.S. economy today. Legalizing undocumented workers would improve wages and working conditions for all workers, and increase tax revenues for cash-strapped federal, state, and local governments. (April 13, 2009)

      Washington, D.C. – The dollars and cents of immigration reform make a lot of sense for the beleaguered U.S. economy. The net economic gain would be $66 billion in new state and federal revenue, according to a new report.

      The review, from the nonpartisan Immigration Policy Center, notes that Florida is one of the states with the most to gain if undocumented workers were provided a pathway to legal status. About 500,000 immigrant workers would be affected.

      Economist David Kallick with the Fiscal Policy Institute contributed to the study. Right now, he explains, those billions of dollars are lining the pockets of employers – who hire folks in the underground economy and avoid contributing to payroll and other taxes.

      "The cost of the underground economy to taxpayers is pretty substantial. The idea is, bringing undocumented immigrants into the 'above-ground' economy and making sure that they pay taxes just like everyone else."

      Critics of reform accuse undocumented workers of "stealing" American jobs; some want to deport everyone who is in the U.S. illegally. Kallick argues that immigrants do not steal good-paying jobs, and more legal workers in the labor pool will help grow the entire economy.

      That's also the view of Esther Lopez, director of civil rights and community action for the United Food and Commercial Workers Union International. She says labor groups see that legalization is good for all workers, and she considers it an important step in rebuilding the middle class.

      "We need an immigration system that is part of our national economic recovery program. We need immigration reform that punishes employers who 'game' the system to drive down wages and working conditions."

    5. American Patriot says:

      Why are youll NOT showing this research???

      The Immigration Policy Center (IPC) has released a wide-ranging review of academic and government data that shows what legalizing undocumented immigrants would mean for the U.S. economy today. Legalizing undocumented workers would improve wages and working conditions for all workers, and increase tax revenues for cash-strapped federal, state, and local governments. (April 13, 2009)

      Washington, D.C. – The dollars and cents of immigration reform make a lot of sense for the beleaguered U.S. economy. The net economic gain would be $66 billion in new state and federal revenue, according to a new report.

      The review, from the nonpartisan Immigration Policy Center, notes that Florida is one of the states with the most to gain if undocumented workers were provided a pathway to legal status. About 500,000 immigrant workers would be affected.

      Economist David Kallick with the Fiscal Policy Institute contributed to the study. Right now, he explains, those billions of dollars are lining the pockets of employers – who hire folks in the underground economy and avoid contributing to payroll and other taxes.

      "The cost of the underground economy to taxpayers is pretty substantial. The idea is, bringing undocumented immigrants into the 'above-ground' economy and making sure that they pay taxes just like everyone else."

      Critics of reform accuse undocumented workers of "stealing" American jobs; some want to deport everyone who is in the U.S. illegally. Kallick argues that immigrants do not steal good-paying jobs, and more legal workers in the labor pool will help grow the entire economy.

      That's also the view of Esther Lopez, director of civil rights and community action for the United Food and Commercial Workers Union International. She says labor groups see that legalization is good for all workers, and she considers it an important step in rebuilding the middle class.

      "We need an immigration system that is part of our national economic recovery program. We need immigration reform that punishes employers who 'game' the system to drive down wages and working conditions."

    6. David, Jackson, Ms says:

      Illegal immigration is having a huge negative impact on all Americans and there is no group or party in government willing to speak up or enforce laws on the books designed to address the issue for fear of potentially scaring away an entire race of voters. Both major parties take the votes of their "legal" constituency for granted in favor of wooing the overwhelming illegal population but, the truth of the matter is far worse. Many of our representatives in government are not at all concerned with the well being of any of their constituents, legal or illegal, but have been and remain solely in pursuit of power. The idea that we are represented by our elected officials has become a joke among career politicians. Our nation is under attack and the values and freedoms we hold dear are being used against us. Regardless of political affiliation the people of this nation MUST stand up and fight or we will find ourselves having nothing left worth fighting for. The saddest day in American history will be when there is no hope of a better life in this once great nation. I know I am preaching to the choir here but for GOD’s sake we must do more than disagree amongst ourselves. I am 27 years old and I choose this day to begin fighting for that in which I believe.

    7. Spiritof76, New Hamp says:

      To American Patriot,

      One fundamental requirement of our country is rule of law. Illegal entry is breaking the law. The federal government is required to enforce the law concerning illegal entry as it pertains to our national security. The economic benefit which is dubious at that can not trump deportation of those that had entered the country illegally. If we don't consider illegal entry as breaking the law, why do we have a legal process for entry into the country and requirements for citizenship?

      There is only one answer. Find them and deport them. Prosecute all the employers that provide employment to illegal aliens. They are aiding and abetting illegal activities. Let them all come through the front door as thousands of foreigners gain entry into this country.

      Let us not demagogue those that hold this view by calling them against immigration. There is and there must be a difference between illegal and legal immigration. We are for the latter kind.

    8. Delaware Bob, Smyrna says:

      There is no doubt that this illegal immigration has cost the American taxpayer BILLIONS over the years. Why has our Federal Government failed us so badly? What gave these ILLEGAL ALIENS the right to snub their nose at our laws? Yes, what right?

      I can't say the ILLEGAL ALIENS are completely to blame for the shape of our economy, but they are a BIG part of the problem. The ILLEGAL ALIENS send BILLIONS upon BILLIONS out of this Country every year, money we will NEVER see again. Does this help our economy?

      How about the BILLIONS the American taxpayers fork out for the ILLEGAL ALIEN BABIES, the schooling of them, the medical care and the list goes on, and on, and on.

      How about the MILLIONS upon MILLIONS paid to jail ILLEGAL ALIENS for the crimes, then the cost to deport them. Does this help our economy?

      Then you have these activist groups, the Catholic Church and the ACLU that want AMNESTY for these ILLEGAL ALIENS. It would be absolute suicide for this Country if AMNESTY were granted to the 20 million or so ILLEGAL ALIENS. We have more and more people out of work everyday and they want to add another 20 million to this Country? I say, "NO"!

      If AMNESTY were ever granted to these 12-20 million ILLEGAL ALIENS, you can bet big money that 3 years from now, there would be ANOTHER 3-5 million ILLEGAL ALIENS demonstrating on our soil for AMNESTY.

      An end MUST come to this illegal immigration. The perfect tool we have so far is E-Verify. It MUST be used by ALL businesses and Government Social Services. EVERY employee must be checked! If they are illegal, they are to be dismissed!

      I also believe it is time for all 50 States to pass a State law, like Arizona, Oklahoma, Mississippi, Missouri, South Carolina and a few others. It is time for these ILLEGAL ALIENS to go back to their home Country and get out of this Country. The problems they are causing will not go away until the ILLEGAL ALIENS are out of this Country.

      The bottom line is that no ILLEGAL ALIEN has a right to be in this Country.

    9. frank kinney howell says:

      how does one know just how many illegal come into country? does are wonderful no security goverment keep records of the thousands of innocent victims from illegal invaders! CRIME! like rape! murder! kidnappings? path to citizenship? health care? social security? employment? american privilege just flat out given to unknown invaders the same privileges of real american citizens? cost let them pay taxes to cover their expense please! hindus? muslims? communist? i swear to tell the truth the whole truth so help me god? who! what! where! our privileges? thats real smart! multi culture of chaos and ghetto boom towns? poverty! all this and much more for culture change for cheap labor and profits only by our wonderful thoughtful ones minds in washington DC" home to one of ten people have aids today! we lose gain nothing from amnesty period. INDEPENDENT truth justice and a american culture orderly way period. AMEN.

    10. Maggie Wahington says:

      Just one question – why? Whenever politics favor those who break the law, there's a reason. We (citizens) should be pushing for an answer to that question rather than only focusing on the results of the open door policy of our goverment. Why? Who's driving this? Who will benefit from amnesty? Who is no longer in favor of a diversified America? With millions and millions of Hispanics who do not practic birth control who have become dependent upon our social programs to raise their children, just why is trend toward a Latino America (do the math) being tolerated. Trust me if the color of the skin were different (white) and millions of white people who did not practice birth control was flooding this country, all people of color would begin a revolution to stop it. Why are our politicians almost designing a Latino America?

    11. ImWatchingU says:

      This heated discussion continues to go but the basic premise is the law is the law! Right? The Administration may have their own agenda's on this subject but the current laws are enforcable. Enter illegal, not leave within your Visa time, and failure to pay taxes are all federal crimes and more than covered.

      Lock down the current jobs and pressure employers. Finish the Southern Wall. Fire Napolitano.

    12. viola says:

      It a shame that our own American politicians tend to make up so many excuses for illegal aliens in America, just not caring at all how illegal immigration is killing America! all of these people plus the illegal aliens, and all of their advocates wants to just throw illegal aliens on top of the American citizens,just push Americans in the back,leaving them second in line to every thing,at the same time they tend to cry about a stupid path to citizenship, which is another amnesty, regardless how they reword it.

      A path to citizenship will be another disaster, just like the amnesty in 1986, it will cause more illegal aliens to find their way in America, just crying marching and protesting up and down the streets of America, demanding amnesty, path to citizenship, again they will spit and walk all over American citizens as if they do not exist.

      Our own politician are just given America to illegal aliens, look at our birthright laws, it is a wide open law that allows them to have millions of their children granted American citizenship, this is a sneaky amnesty, think about it, this it self is ruining America,millions of mothers are having their children born here many of them as soon as they cross the borders, just for the sake of making their children instant American citizens,so that them their selves can stay in America,to make it much easier for them to get all the freebies, amnesty, a path to citizenship, if our politician were to grant them one,their American children can help them win, a stupid path to citizenship, because our weak politician are to lenient when it comes to their children, and do they know this!! this allows them to just play on this by continuing to abuse our birthright law. they are stupid not to stop this birthright law to any illegal alien.

      Illegal aliens are also using our birthright laws to multiply themselves, just really pushing their race to become over populated at a very fast pace, they believe that Americans have stop having babies, and they still are making babies, this is not fair to America that the Hispanic race is becoming over populated, because of the help of amnesties, a path to citizenship, and their children getting granted American citizenship by the millions! Why do our own politicians insist on just giving America to Mexico!! Why are they forcing Americans to live in legal and illegal aliens Mexico in our country America?? if this were to happen America will be lost,Americans will have no respect for this new found Mexico in America, rather they realize it or not, they really need to open their eyes and smell the coffee!!

      Our politicians need to see that this was all a plan by illegal aliens and all their advocates, it is not fair that our politicians are going to allow illegal aliens wrongdoings,all their plots and plans, schemes and scams, in America win them a path to citizenship, Our politician can deport 20-40 millions of them, if they really want too, if they stop trying to attach them to our birthright laws, because the birthright laws tend to make it difficult to deport them, because of the birth of their instant American children, there should be no such thing of their American born children, this stupid birthright law to them should stop immediately, it is poison to America!!!! A path to citizenship for illegal aliens will not make America better, it will make it much worse.

      Americans need politicians, lawmakers who will be totally fair to their own citizens,who are strong,and do not shut them out, they are so sick and tired of hearing illegal aliens, all their advocates, and our own politicians saying that illegal aliens are doing jobs that Americans do not want to do! that is so ridiculous, Americans are so confuse of why our politicians allow illegal aliens wrongdoings in America go this far, when they could had stop the invasion of illegal aliens years ago and why they had allow illegal aliens to effect the American citizens, why did they just give our employment, schools and colleges to illegal aliens, these politicians do not want to really stop our employment to illegal aliens, or anything else for that matter! they are not even trying, especially when it is already in their faces, that is enforcement of our immigration laws America already have.

      Our politicians have allow illegal aliens to just jump in front of the line to millions of our employment, and other things. while millions of American are unemployed! they haven't stop this yet, they want to stop workplace raids now, and call it un-American, they want no E-verify, because it keeps them from finding out that millions of employers have illegal aliens in their employment with false social security numbers, or they are scare to separate illegal aliens from their children, when all they need to do, is make them take their children with them when deported. It is funny how they try so much not to hurt illegal aliens and their so call American children, and at the same time do not give a darn about hurting the poor and middle class American citizens and their children, who are legal citizens here, these are also the American citizens who had voted for them.

      If Arizona can find away to enforce their immigration laws, so can the rest of America!!

    13. Carol,AZ says:

      FIRE HER ALONG WITH

      JOHN MORTON

      ERIC HOLDER

      AND IMPEACH POTUS .

      THIS IS ABSTRUCTION OF JUSTICE TO EVERY LEGAL AMERICAN HERE.

    14. Fred Young, Laguna H says:

      DHS Janet Napolitano, Are you willing to do what ever it takes to Stop ALL Cross Border Crime? Read on.

      An idea crossed my mind a while back which, if implemented, will virtually stop all cross border criminal activities (both directions). I have discussed this solution with peers, colleagues, friends and family, and all agree it is a solution that, although costly and immense in scope, is viable and sustainable. I contacted many media sources and government officials without much response and thought you might be interested in reading about this solution and perhaps sharing your thoughts about it with me.

      This solution won’t be easy to accomplish (things worthwhile rarely are). Difficult, yes; impossible, no. We have the technology and the ability and, it will take time and a great deal of money to accomplish. Even so, there could be dramatic immediate results if done right. The cost will be high, yes, but what price do you put on the thousands of lives that could potentially be spared?

      This project, if undertaken, will provide jobs for thousands upon thousands of workers at all levels on both sides of the border for many years to come during the establishing stage and thousands during the operational stage.

      Imagine, a solution that not only stops practically all cross border crime, but one that creates thousands of jobs, stops the need for drug cartels to battle for turf killing innocent citizens, elected officials and themselves, while humanely stopping illegal immigration, reducing to a trickle trafficking of all kinds and, if done right, would reduce pollution, provide a reduction of cost for transportation of goods and create a functional and useful barrier instead of an ugly, ineffective fence.

      This solution, which I call The "Grand" (taken from the Rio Grande) Canal is a functional canal extending from the Gulf of Mexico to the Pacific Ocean along the US/Mexican border following, for a large portion, the Rio Grande.

      Think about it.

      Fred Young

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