Sunday, June 17, 2007

Define amnesty

Bush told the Associated Builders and Contractors on June 14th: “Amnesty is forgiveness with no penalty for people who have broken our laws to get here. In contrast, this bill requires illegal workers to pay a fine, to register with the government, to undergo background checks, to pay their back taxes, to hold down a steady job, and to learn English in a set period of time.”

This was the same Bush who removed the back taxes requirement from the Senate bill before they even got started. The Boston Globe reported the fact on May 19th. It even took McCain, one of the Grand Bargain Twelve, by surprise.

Here’s another gem from the article: “Laura Capps, a spokeswoman for (Sen. Ted) Kennedy,said a provision for requiring back taxes was in Kennedy’s original bill and that (Sec. Michael) Chertoff called for it to be removed. “Chertoff thought it would be too challenging to accurately determine the amount of an applicant’s back taxes,” she said.”

How about that. Bush out-liberaling the patron saint of liberals, Ted Kennedy!

What a sweet deal! I called the IRS to see if I could skip some of my taxes because they were too hard to figure. I was told NO.

Now, I have no idea where the bill stands in the area of back taxes. At one point they were looking for three of the last five years in back taxes. Bushes comments to the contractors is probably the latest pronouncement and it appears the taxes are required.

But watch the ball. Back taxes are a key element of Bushes definition of amnesty. He quietly took it out once and had Chertoff telling reporters, “You’ve got to pay your taxes.” But what he meant by that was future taxes.

Of course, the trick for Washington is to do a deal that is affordable for the illegals. You can easily price yourself out of the market and they will stay in the shadows. Oh, what a tangled web….

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