The trouble with Zakaria’s column is that he doesn’t acknowledge the obvious: The 1986 Reagan amnesty failed to reduce illegal immigration. So did the six subsequent targeted amnesties, most recently the Section 245(i) rolling amnesty of 2000 that legalized nearly a million people. So have any number of sector-specific guest-worker programs adopted since the 1980s.
These facts, rather than a wave of hysteria, might have something to do with the “transformation” of the Republican Party on this issue. Maybe the consequences of the Senate bill will be different, but you don’t have to be Tom Tancredo to be skeptical.
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