Resolution Against Amnesty Exposed
The Resolution Against Amnesty was adopted by ALEC's Criminal Justice Task Force at the States and Nation Policy Summit in December, 2007, approved by the ALEC Board of Directors in January, 2008. ALEC has attempted to distance itself from this piece of legislation after the launch of ALECexposed.org in 2011, but it has done nothing to get it repealed in the states where it previously pushed for it to be made into law.
CMD's Bill Summary
This Resolution, issued after the failure of George W. Bush's 2007 push for comprehensive immigration reform, makes a series of inaccurate assertions in its effort to oppose a path to citizenship, which ALEC brands "amnesty." The Resolution alleges "amnesty" would allow "illegal gang-members" and "terrorists" to become citizens, but no federal legislation under consideration would allow undocumented immigrants to adjust their status without a review of criminal history by immigration authorities. It also alleges that a fault of Comprehensive Immigration Reform or "amnesty" programs is that they do not require use of the "Basic Pilot Verification System," a system that is entirely unrelated to the issue of adjusting legal status and fraught with errors. The system had a 50% error rate for immigrants (denying employment to lawfully present non-citizens) and even had an error rate of 1% for U.S. citizens seeking employment (which, in a country with a population of 200 million, would deny 200,000 U.S. citizens the right to work). This Resolution makes baseless allegations about immigrants who adjust their status depending on social programs, while also claiming it would result in "increased cost in all areas of life for legal citizens." Unscrupulous employers would have a harder time under-paying and mistreating immigrant labor if laborers could more easily enforce safety and wage laws without risk of retaliation by employers due to their undocumented status.
ALEC Resolution Text
Requests that the United States Congress oppose any legislation supporting amnesty or the granting of lawful status to any person that has entered or remained in the United States illegally.
WHEREAS, amnesty was the failed solution of past federal legislation; and
WHEREAS, amnesty allows for increased cost in all areas of life for legal citizens; and
WHEREAS, amnesty rewards illegal aliens for breaking our laws; and
WHEREAS, amnesty would allow illegal-alien gang members, criminals, and terrorists to be eligible to become citizens of the United States; and
WHEREAS, amnesty would increase the poverty rate and allow more people to collect unemployment benefits; and
WHEREAS, amnesty would encourage millions more to fraudulently apply for amnesty; and
WHEREAS, amnesty actually serves to punish those foreign nationals that respect the law and seek to enter the country properly; and
WHEREAS, amnesty fails to require use of any verification system by employers such as the “Basic Pilot Verification System;” and
WHEREAS, amnesty would increase the number of people eligible for the already financially suffering Medicaid and Medicare systems; and
WHEREAS, amnesty would allow individuals to become eligible for Supplemental Social Security Income, which is currently in need of much reform; and
WHEREAS, it cost billions of dollars to educate illegal immigrants and the children of illegal immigrants with a cost of up to $8500 per child; and
WHEREAS, the cost of amnesty is estimated in the trillions and would add additional burden onto all State and federally funded programs;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the American Legislative Exchange Council urges the Congress of the United States to strongly oppose any legislation supporting amnesty or the granting of lawful status to any person that has entered or remained in the United States illegally.
Adopted by the Criminal Justice Task Force at the States and Nation Policy Summit, December 2007.
Approved by the ALEC Board of Directors January 2008.