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  1. #1
    Administrator Jean's Avatar
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    Graham: Failed immigration bill helped border spending amend

    July 30. 2007 3:02PM

    Graham: Failed immigration bill helped border spending amendment

    By JIM DAVENPORT
    Associated Press Writer


    COLUMBIA, S.C. The contentious debate last month on a failed immigration overhaul plan was key to the Senate's approval of $3 billion that will tighten security along the nation's borders, U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham said Monday.

    The money will be used to hire border patrol agents, build fences in urban areas and erect observation towers, Graham said.

    "I think we're going to find more success that could not have been achieved without the prior debate," Graham said. "I took some political heat for being involved in that process, but here's where the political payoff is."

    Graham was booed in May at the state GOP convention as he justified the immigration overhaul. Republican challengers, citing Graham's position on immigration among other things, also have emerged to run against him in a primary.

    Graham said he was not worried about the challengers.

    "Our immigration system is fundamentally broken," Graham said. "We've made it harder, I think, over time, to walk away from the reform measures necessary to regain control of immigration because of this last debate."

    Graham will continue to push for votes on other pieces of the overhaul including:

    - A tougher visa law that cracks down on people who stay in the U.S. illegally.

    - A system keeping illegal immigrants from getting jobs and allowing more legal immigration for highly skilled and unskilled labor.

    - Some means of addressing the estimated 12 million people now in the nation illegally.

    Graham blamed presidential politics for the demise of the comprehensive immigration overhaul policy.

    The steadfast supporter of Republican presidential candidate Sen. John McCain said contenders from both parties refused to find middle ground.

    Graham and the Arizona senator argued during the immigration debate that the bill they pushed was the only way to attract bipartisan support.

    However, GOP Sen. Jim DeMint of South Carolina was sharply critical of the proposal and said it offered "amnesty" to many illegal immigrants. DeMint is one of the top supporters of former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney in early voting South Carolina.

    "I think the presidential politics made this harder to do," Graham said. "People running in the primaries wanted to, you know, not find a middle but I guess, you know, play to the right on the Republican side and to the left on the Democratic side."

    DeMint said the presidential campaigns were not a factor for him.

    DeMint said he is now working with McCain to limit spending in the Homeland Security budget. In the Senate, "you can disagree strongly one day, but need that person the next day," DeMint said.

    The border spending contained in the Homeland Security budget bill is far from a sure thing. President Bush has threatened to veto it because it spends $5 billion more than what he wanted.

    http://www.dailycomet.com/article/20070 ... /707300768
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  2. #2
    Senior Member zeezil's Avatar
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    Some means of addressing the estimated 12 million people now in the nation illegally.
    ...that would be Deportations not Amnesty , Mr. Graham.
    Join our efforts to Secure America's Borders and End Illegal Immigration by Joining ALIPAC's E-Mail Alerts network (CLICK HERE)

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