In a July 10 op-ed piece in the New York Times, three of America’s wealthiest and most powerful business magnates — Sheldon Adelson, Warren Buffett, and Bill Gates — lamented that “immigration reform” legislation is having such difficulty in getting though Congress.
After praising two aspects (the “talented graduate” provision and the “pathway to citizenship,” or amnesty provision) of the bipartisan “Gang of Eight” bill that the Senate approved last June 27 by a 68-to-32 vote, the three men called for the House to follow suit:
Whatever the precise provisions of a law, it’s time for the House to draft and pass a bill that reflects both our country’s humanity and its self-interest. Differences with the Senate should be hammered out by members of a conference committee, committed to a deal.
Continuing their plea, Adelson, Buffett, and Gates wrote:
Signs of a more productive attitude in Washington — which passage of a well-designed immigration bill would provide — might well lift spirits and thereby stimulate the economy. It’s time for 535 of America’s citizens to remember what they owe to the 318 million who employ them.
Both the Senate bill (S. 744) passed in 2013, and the House version (H.R. 15) that has stalled (precisely because it echoes the same flaws as the Senate bill), are titled the “Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act.” Among the 32 senators voting against the bill were such outspoken opponents of granting amnesty to illegal immigrants as Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Rand Paul (R-Ken.), Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.), and Richard Shelby (R-Ala.).
Adelson, Buffett, and Gates noted that although they differed in their political views, they could still, if it were up to them, manage to come together “to draft a bill acceptable to each of us.” They asserted, correctly, that individuals “don’t have to agree on everything in order to cooperate on matters about which you are reasonably close to agreement.” Yet, they are all, apparently, in agreement on one of the most contentious points in the “Gang of Eight's” bill, a point largely responsible for its lack of success in the House. That point is amnesty for illegal immigrants.
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Photos above: Sheldon Adelson (left), Warren Buffett, and Bill Gates