It consists of 9 GOP Senators:
Today, U.S. Sens. David Vitter (R- Louisiana), Jim DeMint (R-South Carolina), Jeff Sessions (R-Alabama), James Inhofe (R-Oklahoma), Elizabeth Dole (R-North Carolina), Saxby Chambliss (R-Georgia), Johnny Isakson (R-Georgia), Richard Burr (R-North Carolina) and Roger Wicker (R-Mississippi) announced the formation of the Border Security and Enforcement First Caucus.
This caucus has been formed to dispel the false premise that there are only two options available for immigration reform, those two false assumptions are the all or nothing options of, giving illegal aliens amnesty or rounding them up and deport them en masse.
The "mission" of the caucus is to show that there is alternatives to those two options, "attrition through enforcement and border security," which would make living illegally in the United States more difficult and less satisfying over time when the government – at all levels – enforces all of the laws already on the books.
This caucus has been formed to be our voice, those of us that have said that we want the laws already on the books to be enforced.
The Caucus will be a platform to let Americans know that some in the U.S. Senate are continuing to make sure that the laws already on the books will be enforced, act as the voice of those concerned citizens who have expressed their opinions time and time again for interior enforcement and border security, push for stronger border security and interior enforcement legislation, and work together in the U.S. Senate to defeat future legislation that offers amnesty.
According the the Los Angeles Times, the bills this new caucus will be proposing have little chance to make it through a Democratically controlled Congress, but will apply pressure to the presidential candidates to take a tougher stance against illegal immigration.
An enforcement package assembled by this new caucus would include 11 bills but that number could rise to 14, one of which would discourage states from issuing driver's licenses to illegal immigrants by docking 10 percent of highway funding from states that continue to do so.
Another would "extend the presence of National Guard on the border and a third would end language assistance at federal agencies and the voting booth for people with limited English ability."
Senator Jeff Sessions, who is leading this effort has a proposal that would impose a maximum two year jail term for someone caught crossing the border for a second time.
According to one of the co-sponsors, Senator David Vitter, "The point is to reinforce the idea that most of us here feel that we need to make enforcement and border security a first step to solving the overall problem."
Other bills in this enforcement package would include, blocking federal funding from cities that bar their police from asking about immigration status, giving the Department of Homeland Security the authority to use information from the Social Security Administration to target illegal immigrants, requiring that construction of 700 miles of fencing along the Southern border be built, not including vehicle barriers, imposing sanctions on countries that refuse to repatriate their citizens, deporting any immigrant, legal or illegal, for one drunken-driving conviction and enabling local and state police to enforce federal immigration laws.
Democrats want to combine enforcement with a guest-worker program and a way to deal with the estimated 12 million illegal immigrants.
Interestingly enough though, a confidential study assembled for the Democrats showed that they needed to talk tougher about illegal immigration, which has led to a Democratic Representative in the House, Heath Shuler of North Carolina, to propose a bill that would strengthen border security and require employers to verify their workers' legal status with an electronic verification system.
That is called the Save Act and had already drawn 140 co-sponsors, 48 of whom are Democrats.
The Democratic leadership has refused to schedule a debate for that proposal.
This Border Security and Enforcement First Caucus will give John McCain a chance to prove what he said when claimed to have heard the people that want border security and enforcement of the laws on the books, by supporting this new caucus, which would help alleviate some of the criticisms that have been leveled at him for supporting what many considered to be a very bad immigration reform bill previously.
MCCAIN: No, it would not, because we know what the situation is today. The people want the border secured first.If McCain truly heard the people and wants to win back some of those he lost by supporting the previous immigration reform bill, he will back this new caucus to the hilt.
(Hat tip Michelle Malkin)