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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Conservative groups seek to win support for immigration reform by simplifying debate



The Senate immigration reform bill is a beast, topping 1,000 pages, giving critics an easy attack. Conservative groups are hoping to cut through the complexity with the release today of a plainly written report: Translating Immigration Reform: A Layman’s Guide.

The guide, prepared by American Action Forum and Hispanic Leadership Network, which includes Jeb Bush and Mario Diaz-Balart as advisory members, goes through the bill by sections and suggests improvements. "Regardless of support for or against reform, it is important to understand the variables surrounding the legislation being debated on the Senate floor," the groups said.

Under suggestions, the report states: "The border security debate typically focuses on securing the southern border with surveillance, additional border patrol agents, and fencing. This oversimplifies the security problem and focuses too many resources on one area. With an estimated 40% of the undocumented population in the U.S. here after overstaying a legal visa, a workable visa tracking system should be a priority. No amount of fencing or additional border patrol officers can prevent unlawful immigration through visa overstays. If we cannot identify those who overstay legal visas, we undermine our unlawful immigration prevention efforts."

[Last modified: Tuesday, June 18, 2013 8:47am]


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