The immigration debate is between two points of view:
1. Secure Borders: This faction wants to use whatever means necessary to stop virtually all illegal border crossings before Congress considers any changes to immigration law.
2. “Comprehensive immigration reform.” This faction wants Congress to start, not with securing the borders but with another of its two thousand page monstrosities, making hundreds of changes to immigration law, including amnesty and citizenship for 12 million illegal aliens who are already here. Improved border security may or may not be a significant part of the package, to be rolled out along with all the other changes.
Most of the Democrat party majority is in the Comprehensive camp and have, since they became the majority in 2007 obstinately refused to harden the border. Their spokesmen insist that physical barriers are offensive. But physical barriers are well within the realm of possibility and, over the long run far cheaper than a permanent addition of tens of thousands of officers to the Border Patrol.
A double-layer fence that was built along part of the California border in the 90s appears to have reduced illegal border crossings in the San Diego area by 80%. It consists of two parallel fences, about 200 feet apart, with a road in between for patrol vehicles.
In 2006, legislation to build 700-miles of similar, double-layer fencing along the Southern border was enacted, with then-Senator Barack Obama voting yes. But when the Democrats took over in 2007 they killed the double-layer fence project. Today, only 34 of the originally budgeted 700 miles are fence protected.
Ten years ago Israel faced an even worse border security problem than America and solved it by building a sophisticated fence system similar to the illustration.
Before the Israeli fence was built scores of suicide bombers and terrorists had crossed the border and killed hundreds of Israelis every year. The fence reduced the violence by 95%.
But for now the entrenched political establishment is dead set against impenetrable barriers and won’t budge until forced to do so by overwhelming grass roots pressure and the loss of dozens of seats in Congress.