There are significant unreported loopholes and exceptions in the immigration-reform bill that could allow illegal immigrants to achieve permanent status before the border security portions of the legislation are executed, WND has learned.
One of the key selling points repeatedly cited by the bill’s “Gang of Eight” sponsors has been that illegal aliens will not be eligible for permanency until after the border-security provisions of the legislation are implemented.
However, a WND review of the latest text of the bill, with the new Republican “border surge” amendment included, finds multiple possibilities for full immigration reform before the required border arrangements are in place.
Further, even the new border amendment leaves the possibility of gaps in the proposed pedestrian fence to be constructed along the border with Mexico.
The updated bill calls for over $40 billion in new border security provisions, including the stationing of 38,405 U.S. Border Patrol agents along the southern border as well as the construction of a 700-mile pedestrian fence along the 1,954 mile border.
The new Republican amendment to the bill contains a laundry list of new surveillance equipment to be installed, from cameras to seismic instruments, plus the construction of new integrated watch towers.
However, the bill contains language that would allow illegal aliens to achieve permanent status after 10 years before any or all of the new border security requirements are fulfilled.
The bill specifically states the “Secretary shall permit registered provisional immigrants to apply for an adjustment to lawful permanent resident status” after 10 years following the bill’s passage if litigation or a force majeure have prevented the fulfillment of the border security requirements, the implementation of a work visa program or electronic exit system.
Further, illegal immigrants can receive permanent resident status if the border requirements, the work visa program or the new electronic exit system has been declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court.
In one of many possible future scenarios, if claims are brought to district courts that tie up construction of the border fence, illegal aliens still can achieve permanent status after 10 years.
In another scenario, the Supreme Court can declare surveillance techniques or any of the border control methods required by the bill to be unconstitutional, and illegal aliens could still become permanent residents.
Further, there seem to be loopholes in the requirements for the 700-mile border fence.
A new border security strategy committee will determine the route of the fence.
According to the text of the bill, the fence is to be built on “nontribal” lands, meaning lands owned by Indian tribes may not require a fence.
There seems to also be loopholes if any sections of the fence interfere with the environment, culture, commerce or quality of life of local residents.
States the bill: “In implementing the Southern Border Fencing Strategy required by this subsection, the Secretary shall consult with the Secretary of the Interior, the Secretary of Agriculture, States, local governments, Indian tribes, and property owners in the United States to minimize the impact on the environment, culture, commerce, and quality of life for the communities and residents located near the sites at which such fencing is to be constructed.”