To the editor:
More than 100 Ohio groups presented House Speaker John Boehner's office with a letter outlining serious concerns about the so-called amnesty bill that recently passed in the Senate.
Pointing to numerous polls that indicate immigration reform is a low priority with the American people, these conservative groups are asking Boehner to send a strong message that the Senate version of the bill is dead on arrival.
The letter to Boehner says, "The major problem with the 1986 Immigration Reform legislation passed under Reagan was that Congress promised border security after they gave amnesty. They never fulfilled their promise. Americans never got border security. We are going down this same road again. This makes no sense considering 66 percent of likely voters, according to a May 7 Rasmussen poll, say that border security must come before amnesty."
The Boehner letter suggests that the House of Representatives has an opportunity to get it right this time by passing a stand-alone border security bill before working on other parts of the bill. If all stakeholders are truly interested in the well being of people "living in the shadows," it makes sense to secure the border first so as not to repeat the 1986 amnesty disaster that resulted in 11 million illegal immigrants in the U.S. today.
The American people are watching and there is every reason to believe that border security comes first with the vast majority. This Ohio conservative coalition is putting the speaker on notice to focus on real border security that has true verification by local border patrols and sheriffs, not the Homeland Security Department. Border security must be solid and verifiable or no bill should be passed.