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Current Proposals on the Illegal Immigration Problem

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Umass Lowell

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  1. Introduction
  2. House Bill 4437.
    1. Criminal penalties
    2. Increased security
    3. More law enforcement on employers
    4. Guest worker program
  3. Border patrol
  4. What the president and congress have proposed
  5. Sources

No one knows exactly how many illegal immigrants are in this country. Estimates range from 4 to 12 million people. The largest group of undocumented immigrants is Mexicans. Thousands of Mexicans, some with families, cross the border illegally in search of work. Typically an illegal will stay in the United States about six months working a low paying temporary job and then head back to Mexico.
The job of stopping the flow of illegals over the border belongs to the U.S. Border patrol. When illegals are caught, they are not brought to trial, but are usually detained and then bused back to the border. They usually reattempt the journey within days. This is called Catch and release. In the mid 90's the border patrol was beefed up near high population southern California cities and southern Arizona cities. This had the effect of slowing the tide of illegals but it is not known weather this slow was due to the increased border patrols or the recession of the economy. The events of 9/11 and the resulting War on Terror have brought the illegal immigrant issue to the foreground of many political debates. The USA patriot act of 2001 put the border patrol under the control of the department of homeland security and tripled the budget of the Canadian Border Patrol.

[...] Since he has taken office the following changes in illegal immigration have taken place. Funding for the border patrol has more then doubled from 4.6 Billion in 2001 to 10.4 billion this year. Border patrol agents have been increased from 9,000 to 12,000. By the end of 2008 the number of agents will have doubled since he took office. Thousands of National Guard troops have been sent to the border to help out the border patrol. The vehicles and barriers on the border have been upgraded including new fences as in the secure fence act. [...]

[...] The bill sets up a guest worker program that allows current undocumented to remain in the country and apply for permanent resident status after six years if they pay a $1,000 fine, pay any back taxes, have no criminal background and learn English and civics. This program allows 400,000 more guest workers to enter the country each year. Increased security. It doubles the number of border agents within five years. It creates a fleet of robotic vehicles, cameras and sensors to monitor the border. [...]

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