AgJobs Senate Floor Statement by U.S.

Mr. President, I will make this very quick. And I appreciate this very much from the Senators from Maryland and California.
    Last summer, I had an intern in my office from Rwanda. I have been active in Rwanda in kind of a mission thing for quite some time. She came to this country 10 years ago after the genocide that was taking place. She went through all the problems in becoming a legal resident. And, of course, she is going to actually become a citizen.
   I have been privileged for a number of years to be chosen to speak at the various naturalization ceremonies in Oklahoma. These people go through all of the procedures. I daresay that most of those who go through the naturalization process become better citizens than some who are born here.
   Certainly, they know more about the history of this country. That is one of the reasons I have opposed, historically, any type of an amnesty program.
   Now, the one that is before us by my very good friend from Idaho has four steps of amnesty in AgJOBS. The first one is a temporary resident status, so that this jobs bill states that upon application to DHS, the immigration status of an illegal immigrant shall--not ``will,'' not ``may be,'' but ``shall''--be adjusted to lawful temporary resident status as long as the immigrant worked in an agricultural job for at least 575 hours or 100 workdays, whichever is less.
   The next step is to take that same person and give them permanent resident status. The third step would be to make an adjustment not only for those individuals coming in but also for the spouses and the minor children. So we are talking about opening that gate for many more people.
   Fourthly, the reentry. Now, this means if somebody left the country under any circumstances, they would be allowed to come back and go through this process.
   On top of that, another thing I do not like about the legislation is it does have a taxpayer-funded legal services provision in it.
   So I just want to get on record and say this is something I do not think is in the best interests of this country.