Bush confronts immigration deal skeptics
By BEN FELLER, Associated Press Writer from yahoo.comGLYNCO, Ga. attacked opponents of an immigration deal Tuesday, suggesting they "don't want to do what's right for America"...
..."You can use it to frighten people," Bush said. "Or you can show leadership and solve this problem once and for all."
The bill would give temporary legal status to millions of unlawful immigrants, provided they came forward, paid a fine and underwent criminal background checks. To apply for a green card, they would have to pay another fine, learn English, return to their home country and wait in line.
The plan also would create a guest worker program. It would allow foreign laborers to come to the U.S. for temporary stints, yet with no guarantee they can eventually gain citizenship.
Both the new visa plan and the temporary worker program are contingent on other steps coming first. Those include fencing and barriers along the Mexico border, the hiring of more Border Patrol agents and the completion of an identification system to verify employees' legal status.
The legislation would also reshape future immigration decisions. A new point system would prioritize skills and education over family in deciding who can immigrate.
Georgia's senators both played leading roles in producing Bush's deal with the Senate. Yet they have also said they may not support the final bill, depending upon how it is amended.
Bush chastised those who say the proposal offers amnesty to illegal immigrants. He called it empty political rhetoric.