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Lou Dobbs Tonight
Amnesty Deal: Pro-Illegal Alien Agreement; Bush Hails Immigration Deal; Gonzales Under Fire; Interview with Jon Kyl; Interview with Tony Snow.
Aired May 17, 2007 - 18:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
LOU DOBBS, HOST: Tonight, pro-illegal alien senators and the White House have reached a compromise to give amnesty to as many as 20 million illegal aliens. One of that deal's architects, Senator Jon Kyl, among our guests here tonight, as is White House Press Secretary Tony Snow.
And a leading opponent of that compromise, Congressman Ed Royce, also joins us here tonight. He calls that deal a straight out sellout.
Also, one in three Americans far from ethnic and racial minorities. Hispanics now the biggest minority in this country, with the fastest growth rate.
We'll have that special report on changing demographics.
And new pressure tonight on Attorney General Alberto Gonzales. Democrats call for a no-confidence vote on the attorney general. And the leading Republican in the Senate urges Gonzales to resign.
We'll have that story.
We'll also be joined by Bay Buchanan, who will tell us about her new book, "The Extreme Makeover of Hillary Rodham Clinton," and her views on today's so-called breakthrough compromise.
We'll have all of that, all the day's news, and a great deal more straight ahead here tonight.
ANNOUNCER: This is a special edition of LOU DOBBS TONIGHT, news, debate and opinion for Thursday, May 17th.
Live from New York, Lou Dobbs.
DOBBS: Good evening, everybody.
The pro-illegal alien and open borders lobby today winning what is an apparent major political victory. A bipartisan group of senators announcing a deal to give as many as 20 million illegal aliens amnesty.
Opponents say that agreement sells out American citizens and sells out national security. President Bush, however, insists the deal does not give amnesty, saying the agreement delivers an immigration system that, in his words, will be secure, productive orderly and fair.
Andrea Koppel has a report from Capitol Hill on the deal and the political battle that lies ahead.
Ed Henry reporting from the White House on what is apparently a rare political victory for this president.
And Lisa Sylvester reporting on how the amnesty deal could threaten our national sovereignty and security.
We turn first to Andrea Koppel on Capitol Hill -- Andrea.
ANDREA KOPPEL, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Lou, the deal reached today came after weeks of emotional negotiations on one of the most politically divisive issues in the nation.
SEN. EDWARD KENNEDY (D), MASSACHUSETTS: Politics is the art of the possible, and the agreement we just reached is the best possible chance we will have in years to secure our borders, bring millions of people out of the shadows, and into the sunshine of America.
KOPPEL (voice over): The compromise would give millions of illegal immigrants a chance to become citizens, a big victory for Democrats. But only those who arrived in the U.S. before January of this year could apply for a special visa.
They'll also have to pay a fine of $5,000. And heads of households will have to return to their home country within eight years to apply for a green card.
Another key issue, how to handle guest workers whose cheap labor is considered essential in the agriculture and service industries. Under the plan, before an estimated 400,000 new workers would be allowed in each year, enforcement would have to be in place, including training an additional 18,000 Border Patrol agents and building 370 miles of fencing along the U.S.-Mexico border.
Even though negotiations brought together the most liberal and the most conservative members of the Senate, some of whom voted against last year's immigration bill, both sides acknowledge this deal is a fragile one which opponents of compromise will try to tear apart.
SEN. DIANNE FEINSTEIN (D), CALIFORNIA: Please, please, please, don't let the good be -- the perfect be the enemy of the good.
KOPPEL: Already in the House, Republicans strongly opposed to offering illegal aliens a path to citizenship, what they call amnesty, said they'd vote against it.
REP. BRIAN BILBRAY (R), CALIFORNIA: I think the fact that they have to keep saying this is not amnesty, this is not amnesty, shows they really do know it is.
(END VIDEOTAPE) KOPPEL: Now, the first real test of this bill's staying power could come on Monday. That is when the Senate is supposed to have a vote to cut off debate. And Lou, it's unclear whether or not Democrats and some Republicans have the 60 votes necessary to do so -- Lou.
DOBBS: Cut off debate before they debate?
KOPPEL: Well, there will be a full day of debate I'm sure before the actual vote.
DOBBS: A whole -- you know, this is -- you've got to love this. It doesn't seem to matter whether the Democrats lead Congress or the Republicans.
Here we are talking about one of the most -- one of the largest bills, if it approximates anything compared to the one last year, which not a single senator, as best we could determine, ever read, prepared to cut off debate by Monday and move ahead with a vote. I mean, that's just -- is that not a very least unseemly and irresponsible?
KOPPEL: There were a number of senators who said that they had -- that they weren't expecting a lot of members to read the bill, but one of the reasons they wanted to get it to them today, Lou, is so they would have several days in which they could go through it.
DOBBS: You know, I don't care what side of this debate anyone in this country -- any citizen is on. People have to be aghast that senators, U.S. senators would not even read the legislation that they are moving forward to a vote.
It's extraordinary. You may be somewhat (INAUDIBLE) to it covering the Hill, Andrea, but the rest of us are a little bit shocked by that behavior and conduct.
Andrea, thank you very much.
Andrea Koppel, as she sits there not saying a word.
President Bush today said he is anxious to sign that agreement into law as soon as possible. I imagine so. That deal a rare political victory for this president, struggling to assert his authority in this country and abroad.
Ed Henry reports now from the White House -- Ed.
ED HENRY, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Lou, you're right. This could be a rare legislative victory for this president.
As you know, much of the rest of his legislative agenda stalled on Capitol Hill right now before that Democratic Congress, and with so much bad news coming in from Iraq, the president went out to the south lawn today, was eager to trumpet this breakthrough. But this victory could also come with some political cost.
With critics calling it amnesty, the president in his remarks was trying to strike a very tough political balance.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The agreement reached today is one that will help enforce our borders. But equally importantly, it will treat people with respect. This is a bill where people who live here in our country will be treated without amnesty, but without animosity.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HENRY: But the president may be on a collision course with fellow conservatives in his party. Republican congressman Duncan Hunter just emerged from a meeting here with the president. As you know, his district in California is right on the U.S.-Mexico border, in San Diego.
Congressman Hunter told me he is making it clear to the White House he thinks this is a rotten deal.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. DUNCAN HUNTER (R), CALIFORNIA: Listen, we passed my bill in October that calls for 854 miles of border fence across Arizona, New Mexico and Texas. The Senate bill cuts my fence in half, literally takes it down to 370 miles.
That's going to do a lot to damage enforcement on the border. You have to have an enforceable border. The Senate bill takes us the wrong way.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HENRY: Now, Congressman Hunter also told me that he told the president that out of the 854 miles of fence along the U.S.-Mexico border that is supposed to be built, mandated in that law passed last year, only two miles have actually been built. Congressman Hunter said he told that to the president and the president seemed surprised -- Lou.
DOBBS: Surprised. Why would he be surprised?
HENRY: Well, certainly, he's been getting reports suggesting that they're making a lot of progress on that. And Duncan Hunter said he pressed him and said that he needs to check back into it because he doesn't think progress is being made -- Lou.
DOBBS: Well, one would think that if you're coming up about 852 miles short over the course of six months, not even by government standards would that be considered progress.
Ed Henry, thank you very much, reporting from the White House.
HENRY: Thank you.
DOBBS: There are rising concerns tonight that that amnesty compromise could threaten national sovereignty and security, as well, opening our borders, if it's possible, even further with Mexico and Canada. Those fears part of wider concerns the Bush administration is hell bent on creating a North American union without the consent of the American people, our Congress, or our neighbors to the north or south.
Lisa Sylvester reports.
LISA SYLVESTER, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): The faces were almost identical. The same crowd that pushed last year's immigration bill, Kennedy, McCain and Specter, were announcing a new bill. This time they had Republican Jon Kyl.
Like last year, they called it "fair legislation".
FEINSTEIN: This is a balanced bill, and I believe it is fair to the best interests of the United States of America.
SYLVESTER: Senators were congratulating each other on a bill that few have actually seen. The language was written by staffers in the dead of night. Lawmakers are expected to read, study the implications, and vote by next week.
JIM EDWARDS, NUMBERSUSA: There will be three days or so to review the language, and it will be very long, very loophole-ridden.
SYLVESTER: Last year's Senate bill was more than 600 pages long. It included provisions that were not made public until after the vote.
One section called for a common security perimeter for North America, and to explore ways to waive visa requirements for Canada, Mexico and the United States. These are underlying provisions of a proposed North American union.
Representative Virgil Goode worries similar language may be in this year's bill.
REP. VIRGIL GOODE (R), VIRGINIA: It's a destruction of our sovereignty. We are turning over more to Canada and Mexico. And I do not like that.
SYLVESTER: One thing that is in this year's proposed legislation -- the Dream Act. That allows illegal aliens to receive in-state tuition, even though U.S. citizens who live out of state do not receive this benefit.
SYLVESTER: Many Republican lawmakers are just not happy with this bill. They haven't seen the final language yet, but they're worried that there may be other surprises in this bill. For example, last year, there was a section that, instead of giving local law enforcement more authority to enforce immigration law, actually weakened their authority -- Lou. DOBBS: Well, Lisa, Andrea Koppel in reporting on this was suitably constrained and tight-lipped as I suggested some of the -- it seems apparent mindlessness associated with this compromise as best we know some of the details. Of course, no one in the Senate or the House, for that matter, knows the full deal other than those people involved in the actual compromise.
What is there abroad on Capitol Hill that makes anyone in the Senate -- let's leave the White House aside for now -- but in the Senate or the House that thinks this is an appropriate way to do business? Not even including fellow senators or fellow congressmen and women in knowledge about legislation that they would like to move through, according to Senator Harry Reid, the snort leader, by the middle of next week.
SYLVESTER: I have heard, Lou, making rounds of calls today, words like "irresponsible," that this is not even practical. That you have got something that could be easily be a thousand pages that they are expected to vote on next week.
It's essentially asking Congress, members of the Senate, to sign their name to a bill that they have not had a chance to read.
DOBBS: Lisa, thank you very much.
Lisa Sylvester from Capitol Hill.
We have just received word that the president of the World Bank, Wolfowitz, has just announced that he will be resigning over the ethical questions arising in his role in raising the pay and perhaps certainly the profile of his girlfriend, who was also employed at the World Bank. Apparently, the World Bank and ultimately the White House saying that is something of a conflict of interest. And Mr. Wolfowitz apparently finally agreeing with that outcome.
I'm sure pending some sort of agreement on his separation package from the World Bank. But that just coming in now.
We'd like to hear what you think about today's compromise deal between the White House and senators on the so-called comprehensive immigration reform agreement.
Our poll question tonight is simply: Do you believe that our senators and congressmen should be required to certify under penalty of perjury that they and their staffs have read all legislation before being allowed to vote on it?
Now, this is a radical concept, I understand it. So we would like you to deliberate carefully over the implications of this question.
Yes or no? Cast your vote at loudobbs.com. We will have the results, whether surprising or predictable, passed on to all of our representatives on Capitol Hill.
More on the amnesty deal or comprehensive immigration reform deal coming up. One of the men playing an important role in the compromise, Senator Jon Kyl, he'll be joining us here.
We'll also be going to the White House for its point of view, and spokesman -- White House spokesman Tony Snow will join us.
And a leading opponent of this compromise, Congressman Ed Royce, joins us as well.
Also, rising pressure again on Attorney General Gonzales to resign his post not only from Democrats, but from leaders of his own party.
And we'll have a special report on the rapidly changing ethnic racial mix of this country as minorities in this country have now gone over the 100 million mark. What are the implications?
We'll have that story. Stay with us.
DOBBS: Senate leaders today met with White House officials trying to end the stalemate over the war funding legislation. The Senate passed legislation expressing support for our troops. Senate and House negotiators now will try to agree on a compromised funding bill. Congressional leaders hope to reach a final agreement on that before Memorial Day.
In Iraq, still no sign of our three missing soldiers who were abducted last Saturday. Six thousand of our troops and Iraqi troops searching for those soldiers south of Baghdad. Four American soldiers and an Iraqi translator were killed when those troops were abducted.
President Bush today met with his closest ally in the Iraq war, British Prime Minister Tony Blair. President Bush and the prime minister met at the White House for their last meeting before Blair steps down. Blair is resigning amid overwhelming opposition to his policies in Iraq.
President Bush also facing powerful opposition, of course, to his conduct of this war. President Bush, however, of course, is not required to step down for another two years almost.
President Bush tonight also facing a rising possibility that his attorney general, Alberto Gonzales, may be forced to resign just when it appeared he had weathered the storm. Gonzales under new pressure to quit not only from Democrats, but also from leaders of his own party.
Kelli Arena reports from Washington.
KELLI ARENA, CNN JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT (voice over): If you thought it couldn't get any worse for Alberto Gonzales, it just did. Senate Democrats say they will schedule a no-confidence vote on the attorney general.
SEN. CHARLES SCHUMER (D), JUDICIARY COMMITTEE: His credibility is shot. Any faith that he can manage on run the department is gone.
ARENA: The latest problem, it seems the Justice Department considered more prosecutors for dismissal than they ever let on. As first reported in "The Washington Post," records show there were 26 prosecutors named as possible candidates for dismissal. Many of them well respected.
In the end, only a handful were let go, but lawmakers say it's still not clear how those decisions were made.
SCHUMER: It just shows a department that has run amuck, where virtually no one is in charge. It's sort of like one of those bumper cars just going from wall to wall without direction.
ARENA: And senators are still reeling from shocking testimony this week from former deputy attorney general James Comey. He described how Gonzales, as White House counsel, trying to bully his predecessor, John Ashcroft, into approving the controversial NSA surveillance program while Ashcroft lay sick in a hospital bed.
Two more Republicans called for Gonzales to resign, Senators Chuck Hagel and Norm Coleman, and the tone on Capitol Hill changed dramatically.
SEN. ARLEN SPECTER (R-PA), RANKING MEMBER, JUDICIARY COMMITTEE: I have a sense that when we finish our investigation, we may have a conclusion of the tenure of the attorney general.
ARENA: Justice officials would not comment specifically on the call for a no-confidence vote, but instead they said the attorney general remains focused on doing the job that the American people expect -- Lou.
DOBBS: Kelli, thank you very much.
Kelli Arena from Washington.
Also in Washington, as we have reported at the beginning of this broadcast, World Bank president Paul Wolfowitz has tendered his resignation. The World Bank saying Wolfowitz will step down at the end of next month.
Wolfowitz, of course, has been facing strong criticism over a possible conflict of interest and his ethics and the way he handled the career of his girlfriend, also a World Bank employee who enjoyed significant pay increases.
Coming up here next, more on the Senate's deal, compromise, whatever you want to call it, on comprehensive immigration reform. We'll be going to the White House for White House spokesman Tony Snow's views.
We'll hear from one of the key senators in this compromise, Republican senator Jon Kyl. We'll also be talking with a vocal opponent, Congressman Ed Royce, who calls it a sellout.
There's a dramatic shift tonight in the makeup of this country. We'll be telling you about the fastest-growing ethnic group in the nation. What does it portend, if anything?
Stay with us. We'll be right back.
DOBBS: Minorities for the first time make up one third of this country's population. The fastest growing ethnic group, Hispanic- White. And as Christine Romans reports, that makes up for a huge shift in the makeup of the population of this country, a new generation gap where older Americans are majority white, younger Americans minority, and primarily Hispanic.
CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): It's being called America's new generation gap. According to the Census Bureau, the large majority of people in America over the age of 60 are non- Hispanic white, and a fast-growing proportion of young people are minority. Hispanics are the largest and fastest growing minority group.
WILLIAM BUTZ, POPULATION REFERENCE BUREAU: The parents and grandparents in America are predominantly more than half non-Hispanic white people. And people who were born in this country. The children in this country now are increasingly not born in this country and, in particular, minorities.
ROMANS: Butz says it is a natural result of a generation now of generous U.S. immigration policy for Hispanics and Asians in particular. The Census Bureau says America's minority population of 100 million last year is larger than the entire population of this country in 1910.
Today, 66 percent are white; 14.8 percent Hispanic; 13.4 percent black; and almost 5 percent Asian. In these states and the District of Columbia, minority groups make up more than half of the population. So-called majority-minority states. But it is the growth in the Hispanic population demographers find most remarkable.
ROY TEIXEIRA, CENTURY FOUNDATION: About half of the population growth in the United States is attributable to the grown in the Hispanic population. But because Hispanics tend to be younger, and in particular because many of them tend not to be citizens, only about a quarter of the growth in eligible voters comes from Hispanics.
ROMANS: But he says that may change. Naturalization rates among Hispanic immigrants are rising.
(END VIDEOTAPE) ROMANS: The Census, as a rule, counts everyone and doesn't ask about immigration status. But demographers say any amnesty with a pathway to citizenship will likely increase the rate of naturalization of Hispanics in the U.S. And therefore, their power, as well, in the electorate -- Lou.
DOBBS: And it fascinates me, because the way the Census Bureau does it, Hispanic-white, Hispanic-black. When, in point in fact, Hispanic isn't a race at all. And if they want to describe them as some part of a racial minority, Hispanic-black, Hispanic-white, it is -- it's an interesting turn and suggestive of a thinking that comes out of the '60s and '70s bureaucratic minds and political minds.
Christine, thanks very much.
Time now for some of your thoughts.
Tom in Texas said, "Lou, I'm damn mad. This Senate and administration have betrayed America and the American citizen with this sorry immigration bill. They, along with their corporate bosses should be tried for treason."
And Roger in Iowa, "The American worker got sold out two times in a week. They were sold out once on trade, and then on immigration by Democrats in Congress. I voted Democrat all my life. Not anymore."
And Martin in Florida, "Hey, Lou. Just heard about the new immigration bill." Well, it's just a compromise, actually. Not yet a bill.
"I thought I voted for a representative, not a comedian, because this is a joke and the joke is on the voter. I guess there will be a lot of one-term Democrats. I for one will make sure of that."
We'll have more of your thoughts coming up here later in the broadcast, and a few dealing my discussions with the leaders of the Southern Poverty Law Center last night. I think you will enjoy that. You may find some of them a little annoying.
Coming up here next, a number of senators agreeing on a compromise for illegal immigration reform. Reform they call it. One of the key figures in that compromise is Senator Jon Kyl, the highly respected senator from Arizona.
White House Press secretary Tony Snow joins us, as well.
And, an outspoken opponent of the deal, Congressman Ed Royce, he calls it a sellout.
And outrage as the federal government spends a million dollars on a NASCAR sponsorship deal. What for? Why, to recruit Border Patrol agents.
Imagine that. And Senator Hillary Clinton wants to be president. But is she telling the whole truth? We'll be joined by Bay Buchanan, author of the new book "The Extreme Makeover of Hillary Rodham Clinton".
We'll also be talking about that comprehensive immigration reform compromise.
Stay with us. We'll be right back.
DOBBS: One of the key lawmakers in the compromise over comprehensive immigration that was announced today is Senator Jon Kyl of Arizona. Senator Kyl, one of the senators announcing the deal at a Capitol Hill news conference today. Let's hear what some of those senators had to say.
SEN. ARLEN SPECTER, (R) PA: Immigration has become a third rail in American politics.
SEN. KEN SALAZAR, (D) CO: We have had broken borders in this country for 20 years.
SEN. EDWARD KENNEDY, (D) MA: Year after year, we have had broken borders.
SEN. JOHNNY ISAKSON, (R) GA: We have got to fix our broken border.
SEN. MEL MARTINEZ, (R) FL: Some will call this amnesty.
SPECTER: It is not amnesty.
SEN. JOHN MCCAIN, (R) AZ: We are not going to repeat the 1986 amnesty.
SEN. JON KYL, (R) AZ: No one gets 100 percent of what they want.
SEN. DIANNE FEINSTEIN, (D) CA: The ag jobs bill is part of this bill.
SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM, (R) SC: Ag jobs, we hope, to be in.
FEINSTEIN: Is in.
GRAHAM: Is in. OK.
MARTINEZ: It's a very, very complicated piece of legislation.
SEN. SAXBY CHAMBLISS, (R) GA: We still have some language to work out on ag jobs.
MCCAIN: But this is what the legislative process is all about.
ISAKSON: The pressure is on us.
KYL: It is not perfect.
GRAHAM: This is what my ninth grade teacher told me government was all about.
DOBBS: And joining us now from Capitol Hill is Senator Jon Kyl, Republican of Arizona. Senator, good to have you here.
KYL: Thank you, Lou.
DOBBS: As I watched you all announcing that compromise, I and my colleagues could not help but be struck by a very similar press conference a year ago when a compromise had been reached on comprehensive immigration reform. How does this differ if your judgment from that one?
KYL: Well, first of all, I'm supporting this one. And I didn't support that one. It was far too liberal. It didn't do the job in my opinion. And I think because of the influence that I and other conservatives brought to the table this time, the bill is far more conservative, more restrictive than the bill that passed last year.
For example, who would have thought that we could get a bill that would end chain migration forever? Meaning, if you haven't applied to come into this country as a family member, after May of 2005 you cannot come into this country.
And we have got that in the bill. So there are a variety of thing that is are in this bill that were not in the bill last year.
DOBBS: And at this point, the Senate majority leader, Senator Harry Reid, says he wants a vet on this thing. He wants to a vote to end debate Monday. He wants to move ahead and have it out of the way next week. Do you find that somewhat unseemly in the speediness of the process?
KYL: It's a very short timeframe, you are right. Now the vote on Monday is simply onto proceed on to the legislation. But you are right. It's a very short time frame for a very complex bill. It may be that we don't finish it by the end of the week and then we would have to continue after the Memorial Day recess.
DOBBS: Troubling, also, Congressman Duncan Hunter. He pushed through his bill on the border fence. Today, after just meeting with the president, he said this legislation cuts his bill, the fencing provided for by his legislation, his law, that he got enacted last year, cuts it in half right off the bat.
We moved to what Secretary Michael Chertoff calls virtual border security and, you know, unfortunately the issues of border security and illegal immigration as you know are not virtual. They're very real.
KYL: Yeah. Lou, could I shark (ph) the record here?
KYL: Duncan Hunter is one of my very best friends. He is a great patriot and American and I helped him get through his very first border fence in the San Diego area a decade ago.
DOBBS: Smugglers' gulch.
KYL: That's right. this bill does not change his bill one iota. All it says is that until more than half of the 700 miles called for in his bill is built, nothing can happen here in the United States with the illegal immigrants are here. In other words, that's part of the trigger. But it doesn't stop with the 370 miles of fencing that have to be built. That is just the first step.
DOBBS: Well, let's -- because you and I have discussed this. Let's just go because we're all going to have time to read this. Well, we're not going to have time probably many of us to read it but I guarantee you I'm going to read it. I'll make that pledge to you. I will read every page of this. But the issue has been all along that we cannot as I have said here, you cannot substantively reform immigration law in this country unless you can control immigration. You can't control immigration if we don't have control of our borders and ports.
Is it - do you believe that this legislation after compromise -- let's assume it passes the Senate, moves to the House and passed, do you believe that border security will be established?
KYL: It will not yet be established but established as much as 18 months more of activity can establish it. Like, for example, hiring 18,000 Border Patrol agents, building the fencing, doing all of the other things the bill calls for. I don't want to ever stop. I don't want to ever say, Lou, once we get to 20,000 Border Patrol agents, then we are all done. Until we have secured the border I am not done.
DOBBS: Well, you are definitely not done in moving ahead with this legislation. You have said -- well, let's put it this way. This process moving ahead, many of the senators will not even have a chance, my guess is, or their staffs to read the legislation if Senator Reid has his way. Where are we in the process? Let's take it -- let's put it in a baseball metaphor, nine innings. Where are we in this game?
KYL: Well, you can say in one way, we're in the second inning because the bill has not even quite been written yet.
The text will be given to everybody tomorrow. We'll have over the weekend and Monday to take a look at it. Then Tuesday, we'll actually begin debating the bill on the floor of the Senate. We can debate it and amend it all next week. The leader would like to finish it at the end of next week but it may well be that senators are not done with it. So let's say that it finally passes the Senate. Then the House has to take something up. They could either take up our bill or their own bill. Let's assume the House passes a bill. Then the two body haves to decide, are they going to take each other's bill up or are they going to go to a conference committee?
If the conference committee agrees on a product, they go back to the two houses. If both houses pass that, finally it goes to the president.
So there's going to be a long time for everybody to become totally familiar with this. To your point that a week is very short in the Senate, you are absolutely right. But there will be plenty of opportunity for everybody to see what it's all about and to get their input and citizens need to do that.
DOBBS: And before the citizens, I think most of us citizens would sure appreciate it if our senators and congressmen did their reading before ever making a vote on it.
DOBBS: We'll pass along the results of our poll tonight which goes to that issue. Senator Jon Kyl, one of the -- one of the folks I know who does read legislation. As well as write it. Good to have you here. Senator Jon Kyl.
KYL: Thank you very much, Lou.
DOBBS: Up next, more on the Senate's compromise. We'll be going to the White House for reaction from press secretary Tony Snow. My guess is he's more than a little pleased. Congressman Ed Royce joins us. My guess there is he's a little displeased and the Border Patrol taking a novel approach to recruiting new agents. They are having a very hard time finding them. Wait until you find out how they're doing it and how much money they're spending to do so.
And presidential candidate Senator Hillary Clinton under scrutiny in a new book written by author Bay Buchanan. We'll be talking about that with her and this new compromise on illegal immigration and border security. Stay with us.
DOBBS: The White House celebrating what it believes is a major political victory, a compromise over comprehensive immigration reform legislation. That so-called legislation is the cornerstone of the Bush administration's policies on the domestic agenda. The president today congratulating senators of both parties who worked on reaching the compromise and this is what he had to say.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GEORGE W. BUSH, U.S. PRESIDENT: I look forward to, you know, a good vote out of the United States Senate as quickly as leader Reid can get the bill moving. And then, of course, we look forward to working with the House of Representatives to take this first step and convert it into a successful second step. I really am anxious to sign a comprehensive immigration bill as soon as I possibly can.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
DOBBS: And joining us now is White House press secretary Tony Snow. Tony, I have to say that this is about as ebullient, effusive and just tickled pink as I have seen Carlos Gutierrez and Michael Chertoff in some time. That was their I'm happy look, right?
TONY SNOW, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: Well, those guys have been working pretty hard on Capitol Hill, for a long time working on this legislation. Mainly trying to do the thing I think you are going to like, Lou, when you look at the 380-page bill. By the way, I know you're worried about people getting a chance to read it. It is going to be on the desks tomorrow. It's going to be another five days before they actually have to do it so let me see, that means 19 pages a day gets them through. I have a feeling that we'll have an opportunity for everybody to take a good look.
DOBBS: Don't forget, I'm a television journalist. I'll need a few more days. Five pages a day so it's still ought to work out. Tony, let me ask you. Already this legislation, this compromise, here's what Chuck Grassley, senator from Iowa had to say. I voted -- we can put this up for everybody to see.
"I voted for amnesty in '86 and learned that rewarding illegality only promotes illegality. I won't repeat the mistake of '86 by voting for amnesty this year."
How do you react? Do you believe that you would be successful with Senator Grassley on this?
SNOW: Well, when Senator Grassley get to take a look at it he is going to realize it is not amnesty for a whole series of reasons. One of the most significant things in this bill, Lou, is that you and I know that we have millions of people here illegally. First they have to admit they're here illegally and pay a fine in recognition that they've broken the law. Furthermore, they're going to have to place themselves in a position that we know who they are, where they are, who they're working for. With a tamper proof I.D. that among other things is going to have their fingerprint on it. If they violate the terms of that, they're out and they can never return.
They've got to stay continuously employed, they've got to keep their noses clean, they can't be breaking the law and at the same time, they also have to do the sorts of things that I think qualify them simply as good residents of the United States, master the language, become part of the culture and by the way, part of the culture is to know math. I got my math wrong. It is 76 pages a day for the next five days. Sorry about that.
DOBBS: Well, then I'm in bigger trouble than I first thought in terms of going through that. Senator Jim DeMint also expressing great reservations about this. He said, "This rewards people that broke the law with permanent legal status. It's puts them ahead of millions of law-abiding immigrants waiting to come to America. I don't care how you have to spin it," said Senator DeMint. "This is amnesty."
SNOW: Well, again, you know, amnesty is a term that people want to throw around rather than reading the bill and making the arguments. Senator DeMint, whom I like a lot, he is flat wrong on this. He is not even close to right.
Number one, to get permanent status, what you have to do is you have to go through a whole series of steps including leaving the country and signing up for it. So, this is not automatic permanent status for anybody. What it is is automatic you've got to identify who you are. You cannot sponge off the welfare system. You have to have a job. No more chain migration. Anybody that crosses illegally is kicked out and never to return and furthermore, the largest commitment to border in American history.
DOBBS: Will the president vow right now in your best judgment, I wouldn't ask you to as you are his spokesman to reach quite that far, but in your judgment, do you think the president would vow right now that he would not sign legislation that did not end chain migration, that he would not sign legislation that did not require knowledge of English as a condition to residency and citizenship?
SNOW: Well, let me put it this way. The presidents supports both of those positions. No chain migration. You have got to have English and he has laid that out in a series of speeches so my sense is that's going to be part of the final product.
If you take a look at it, the United States Senate, Ted Kennedy working with Jon Kyl and others, and I've got to say Democrats and Republicans on this decided that they would work out toward a constructive bill rather than trying to demagogue it and I think that should be congratulated.
And Lou, I'll tell you. You can congratulate yourself in this sense. People now spend a lot more time thinking seriously about security. They spend more time thinking about how do you track down people working here illegally? Spend a lot more time trying to make sure that we don't repeat the mistakes of the past. So that we have security and we've got an economy that can continue to grow.
DOBBS: Well, Tony, you are kind. I won't waste a lot of time on self congratulation. It's so ethereal and so difficult to substantiate. Tony, it's greet have you here. We thank you very much. Tony Snow, White House press secretary.
SNOW: Thanks, Lou.
DOBBS: Thank you.
Well, Congressman Ed Royce will join us here in a minute. He has a somewhat differing view of this compromise and some set of concerns that extend beyond it. We'll be talking with him.
And coming up at top of the hour THE SITUATION ROOM with my friend Wolf Blitzer. Wolf?
WOLF BLITZER, CNN HOST: Thanks very much, Lou.
We're going to continue our coverage of this new Senate immigration bill that's coming under fire today from critics calling it amnesty. The homeland security secretary Michael Chertoff and the commerce secretary Carlos Gutierrez, they will be in THE SITUATION ROOM to defend this legislation.
Also, we'll have the latest on the search for those American soldiers missing in Iraq. Our reporter on the scene, Arwa Damon, she is embedded with U.S. troops. They are looking for the missing soldiers in the heart of Iraq's so-called triangle of death.
Plus, this is an awful story. The gruesome stoning death of an Iraqi teenage girl. You're going to find out what prompted the vicious mob attack as so-called law enforcement authorities in Iraq were looking on and taking pictures of all of this. Lou, this is shocking story. All that coming up at the top of the hour.
DOBBS: Without question. A terrible, terrible story. Thank you, Wolf.
Joining me now is Congressman Ed Royce, Republican of California. It is good to have you with us, Congressman Royce. You have said straight out this compromise looks like a complete sellout to you.
REP. ED ROYCE, (R) CA: Well, it is. And it's a mockery of the rule of law and if we go back to the 1986 amnesty, it is the same logic, the same reasoning we heard at the time. That if massive amnesty is granted, somehow there's going to be enforcement. We saw no enforcement of the employer sanctions then, what we saw was a tripling of the amount of illegal immigration as a result of that '86 act after it was passed and that's what we're going to see that here, Lou.
We're going to see people around the world who say, the United States is not serious. If I get into the United States illegally, I'll be available for the next amnesty. This is going to drive illegal immigration, I can assure you.
DOBBS: Congressman, let's hear from Senator Harry Reid, the Senate majority leader had to say. And all of -- We don't have that, I'm told. Let's listen to Senator Arlen Specter.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SPECTER: It is not amnesty. This will restore the rule of law. Without legislation we will have anarchy. Some 90 cities have tried to legislate to deal with the undocumented immigration problem and they can't handle it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
DOBBS: What is your reaction to Senator Specter's comments? ROYCE: The very definition of amnesty is you reward somebody that's broken the law and here you reward them with citizenship or a path to citizenship, a job, benefits, welfare benefits. Will all become available as of January 1st. Of course it is amnesty and that's the whole problem.
DOBBS: You know, Senator Specter does raise an interesting question when he brings up the issue of anarchy. The federal has government failed to enforce U.S. immigration laws. The federal government and this administration failed to enforce our border security and port security. Following September 11th.
If there is a nationwide effort and there is about 100 communities taking up trying to defend themselves against the impact of illegal immigration, there's no greater responsibility than that rests with the Congress and this president.
ROYCE: And look how serious our federal government apparently is about this. We passed a bill for 850 miles of new fencing. We have two miles, two miles completed.
In terms of the employer sanctions already on the books, Lou, those are not being seriously enforce. So the enforcement component of this is not going to happen. But in addition to the amnesty, we have an increase in legal immigration of three quarters of a million people. We have the new guest worker program and the entire cost of this is $2.4 trillion. On the American taxpayer.
DOBBS: Two point four trillion and by the way, that number coming from the Heritage Foundation that has been examining this issue.
We might also point out is it not fair, Congressman Royce, that the United States Congress, neither the Senate nor the House of Representatives even though it's been a year since the Senate passed the first version of the comprehensive immigration reform. There is no fiscal impact study brought to us by our federal government.
ROYCE: Absolutely. And on top of all of this, we can also look at the consequence of bringing such low skilled immigration into the United States. It is going to push down wages, it's going to import an awful lot of poverty into this country and these individuals on average pay $1.00 in taxes for every $3.00 in public benefits they receive. Figure out what it means for Social Security in the future as a consequence of this act.
DOBBS: Well, we have got a lot of figuring, all of us, of course, in the journalists in this country. All of you. Elected officials. And we have got pretty short time to go through all of that legislation. But we'll get it done, right, congressman?
ROYCE: Well, I hope we don't get this bill done.
DOBBS: Just the reading. I'm talking about the reading.
ROYCE: If people understood what was in the bill, Lou, they would be opposed to this legislation. It will lead to insolvency. There is no way this great republic can afford this legislation. We have got to rally the House of Representatives to oppose this bill.
DOBBS: Congressman Ed Royce, good to have you here.
ROYCE: Thank you, Lou.
DOBBS: The Border Patrol spending almost a million dollars trying to recruit 6,000 new agents. They're having a hard time doing so. But to improve their chances, that is the Border Patrol emblem on a NASCAR. And the agency signing a 25-race sponsorship deal hoping to find the recruits amongst the NASCAR audience.
Not everyone thinks this is such a great idea or use of taxpayer dollars. In fact, the Border Patrol union and other agents are simply furious that money isn't going towards strengthening law enforcement.
If the Border Patrol has trouble finding agents, I'm willing to help. We are going to put it up on our Web site go. Go to loudobbs.com. You'll find a link there. We are going to link you to the Border Patrol's career site and by the way, in its first race last Friday, the Border Patrol NASCAR racer finished 25th. A good beginning.
Coming up next, what is the truth about Hillary Clinton? Bay Buchanan wants to know. She found out. She will be here to tell us what she found out in her brand new book.
It's also a matter of some discussion and interest to Bay Buchanan, comprehensive immigration reform. Stay with us. We'll be right back.
DOBBS: Well, Bay Buchanan is here now. She has a brand new book out. It is entitled "The Extreme Makeover of Hillary (Rodham) Clinton" suggesting a little partisanship in the approach. How are you, Bay?
BAY BUCHANAN, TEAM AMERICA PAC: Hi, how are you doing?
DOBBS: Congratulations on the new book.
BUCHANAN: Thank you very much. It is not partisan. Completely objective review of who Hillary is and where she wants to take this country.
DOBBS: And objectively you say that Hillary Clinton is without question a big anti-war liberal.
BUCHANAN: Well, she is -- you know, on the war issue, I made it really clear. She voted for that war for one reason. It's real clear now. Political expediency and she defended that war for two and a half years and then she comes out and says I was misled. He lied to me, the president lied to me and she tells one reporter I didn't even know it was war. I didn't vote for war. That's after two years of defending the war.
I don't mind if you're for or against the war. There's arguments on both sides but let's have some courage and be a stand-up person when you vote to send young people over to die and possibly put their life on the line there.
DOBBS: Consistency amongst all sorts of elected officials in Washington, not just on Capitol Hill, would do well to live by that ...
BUCHANAN: I couldn't agree more, especially when it comes to the lives of our young people.
DOBBS: You said also that she has been -- if we could put this up. Bay writes that, "Hillary Rodham Clinton has been many things throughout her life but one thing she has always been is a dedicated, unapologetic liberal."
Why should she be apologetic? A liberal, a conservative, be who you are.
BUCHANAN: That's exactly right and that's why I wrote "The Extreme Makeover." How many times have I been on CNN when the host will say to me, now, Hillary is a moderate, Bay, she is a centrist, how are you going -- She is not. There's no evidence whatsoever that she is. And yet, the media is complicit in this fraud.
DOBBS: I heard a clip. I really don't even know if it's - and I probably shouldn't bring it up. But Joe Scarborough calling her a great unifier the other day. I thought that was interesting.
BUCHANAN: They're not doing the homework and a concern that there's really a perpetrated fraud on the American voters and we need to get behind it.
DOBBS: The idea that Hillary Clinton -- you say one of your discoveries in the book is that she is enormously insecure. How so?
BUCHANAN: Exactly. An interesting thing happened. I didn't understand or know that. I wasn't looking for that. I picked up the book and read it a couple of times but as I started getting in the first read, I said there's something strange here.
She tells story after story and I recognized the insecurity that's behind it and once I recognized it and went there, I started to look at the book more closely and I document in my book, incident after incident, which proves that she is a very insecure person and explains who she is. The arrogance, the sense of superiority, the way she treats people who she doesn't perceive as equal to her. Her concept that she is above ...
DOBBS: You make her sound superior rather than insecure.
BUCHANAN: That is the fake. That's what you do as an insecure person. And the sad thing is. Insecurity is not bad. John Adams was insecure. You can be strengthened by overcoming it. But she has been consumed by it. She has surrounded herself with experts. She is not certain of her own self. She is an indecisive human being and she is not qualified because of the character to be president of the United States.
DOBBS: "The Extreme Makeover of Hillary (Rodham) Clinton." Bay Buchanan, this is the book. Awaiting your read. Good to have you here.
BUCHANAN: Thank you very much.
DOBBS: And Senator Clinton is online, too. Thank you very much, Bay Buchanan. Good to have you with us.
BUCHANAN: Thanks very much.
DOBBS: Coming up next, the results of our poll. Stay with us.
DOBBS: This is one of my favorite poll questions of all time here. Your response also amongst my very favorite. Ninety-eight of you saying you believe our senators and congressmen should be required to certify under penalty of perjury that they and their staffs have read all legislation before they're allowed to vote on it.
We thank you for voting. We thank you for begin with us. Please join us here tomorrow. For all of us, thanks for watching. Good night from New York. THE SITUATION ROOM begins now with Wolf Blitzer. Wolf?
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