Self-Deportation Is Back

...Romney idea revived

David Drucker, Roll Call (May 1, 2013)


The House immigration working group is mulling a proposal that involves “self-deportation” as part of a strategy to make a comprehensive overhaul acceptable to conservatives.

The concept was thrust into the national conversation by 2012 Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney. The former Massachusetts governor infamously suggested during the GOP primary campaign that illegal immigrants might leave the U.S. voluntarily — or “self-deport” — over time if the government eliminated incentives for them to stay, including the ability to find work. Romney was responding to a question about how to address the problem of undocumented residents short of forcible government roundups and deportations.

The remark was ridiculed by Democrats and later credited with costing Romney the Hispanic support he needed to run competitively against President Barack Obama. But the bipartisan House immigration working group is developing a proposal designed to make self-deportation an attractive option for undocumented immigrants as they navigate what would presumably be a completely new legal framework. The plan was detailed by a Republican congressional aide familiar with the House working group’s negotiations.

As I reported Monday, this new system would require illegal immigrants who want to legalize to plead guilty to breaking the law and accept a sentence of probation in federal court. The arduous path to citizenship also would mandate that newly legalized immigrants pay fines and back taxes. However, undocumented immigrants who either couldn’t afford or simply didn’t want to pay penalties that might run in the tens of thousands of dollars could avoid doing so.

(for more, please visit our friends at Roll Call)

1 May 2013 09:43am
Without the label self-deportation, isn't the goal to make getting jobs more difficult so fewer immigrants? A rose by any other name is still a rose.
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