Sen. Bob Menendez and some others have floated trial balloons saying the Democrats "Plan B" for some sort of concession to the immigrant rights movement in the Reconciliation Bill is updating the "Registry Date."
|'Registry' allows immigrants to get legal status|
The measure was adopted in 1929, and it was meant to be, and essentially was, a statute of limitation on undocumented status. And over the decades, the date was updated several times ... until it stopped benefitting mostly Europeans.
So the last time the date was moved was as part of the misnamed Reagan "amnesty" of the mid-1980s; and to this day it remains set in 1972, a half-century ago.
The proposal being floated now is for making 2010 the cutoff. That would in theory benefit a majority of the undocumented, but would not begin to redress the harm of the two-decade bipartisan persecution and criminalization of immigrants.
There are hundreds of thousands, perhaps millions of families that have been divided by the Bush-Obama-Trump and now --let's be honest-- Biden criminalization and deportation madness. A registry date change simply ignores the reality of the need to redress that damage.
So welcome as legalization of some --even many-- among the undocumented would be, it is no substitute for a real change in policy.
The Democrat's somewhat disingenuous argument for saying a registry date change fits in a budget reconciliation bill would be that it just updates a deadline for filing a petition for adjusting your status, a mere technicality but --oh happy coincidence!-- it would mean gizillions of dollars flowing into the government because of the filing fee for that petition. So, you see, this is mostly a budgetary measure to raise funds for the feds, like, say, increasing the luxury tax on imported perfume.
The obvious retort is that although disguised as a mere technical change in a deadline, this is in fact a humongous shift in immigration policy. So nice try, but no cigar.
What else should be noted is that the option of updating the registry date has been open since forever to supposedly pro-immigrant Democrats (and yes, to Republicans, too, when there were still some pretending to be pro-immigrant), and they never seriously considered putting it into any piece of must-pass legislation until now, when --oh so conveniently-- the Democrats can shift the blame for it being thrown out on an obscure, unelected official, the Senate parliamentarian.
So until they prove otherwise, my response to the "Plan B" is that this is just one more three-card-monte con job and I say to Biden, Schumer, Pelosi and their ilk: you bastards, that is one more you owe us.