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Should we try Mexico's immigration law? - Mexico deports more illegal aliens than we do
providence journal ^ | 24-APR-06 | J. MICHAEL WALLER

Posted on 04/24/2006 5:26:42 PM PDT by dennisw

Should we try Mexico's immigration law?

By J. MICHAEL WALLER The Providence Journal 24-APR-06

WASHINGTON -- Mexico has a radical idea for a rational immigration policy that most Americans would love. But Mexican officials haven't been sharing the idea with us as they press Congress to adopt the McCain-Kennedy immigration-reform bill. That's too bad, because Mexico, which annually deports more illegal aliens than the United States does, has much to teach us about how to handle immigration; under Mexican law, it is a felony to be an illegal alien.

As the Supreme Court and politicians seek to bring U.S. law in line with foreign legal norms, it's noteworthy that no one has argued that the United States look at what Mexico might teach us about how to solve our illegal-immigration problem. Mexico has a single, streamlined law, seeking to ensure that foreign visitors and immigrants are:

_ In the country legally.

_ Have the means to sustain themselves economically.

_ Not destined to be burdens on society.

_ Of economic and social benefit to society.

_ Of good character, with no criminal record.

The law also seeks to ensure that:

_ Immigration authorities have a record of each foreign visitor.

_ Foreign visitors do not violate their visa status.

_ Foreign visitors are banned from interfering in the country's internal politics.

_ Foreign visitors who enter under false pretenses are imprisoned or deported.

_ Foreign visitors violating terms of their entry are imprisoned or deported.

_ Anyone who aids in illegal immigration is imprisoned.

Who could disagree with such a law?

The Mexican constitution strictly defines the rights of citizens, and the denial of many rights to non-citizens. The General Law on Population, spelling out the country's immigration policy, should cause Americans to ask: Why is our southern neighbor pushing us to water down our immigration laws and policies when its own immigration restrictions are the toughest on the continent? If a felony is a crime punishable by more than a year in prison, Mexican law makes it a felony to be an illegal alien in Mexico. Yet if the United States adopted such a law, Mexico would no doubt denounce it as a manifestation of American bigotry.

Mexico's main immigration law welcomes only foreigners deemed useful to Mexican society:

_ Foreigners are admitted into Mexico "according to their possibilities of contributing to national progress." (Article 32)

_ Immigration officials must "ensure (that) immigrants will be useful elements for the country and that they have the necessary funds for their sustenance" and that of their dependents. (Article 34)

_ Foreigners may be barred from the country if their presence has upset "the equilibrium of the national demographics," if they are deemed detrimental to "economic or national interests," if they are not good citizens in their own country, if they have broken Mexican laws, or if "they are not found to be physically or mentally healthy." (Article 37)

_ The secretary of governance may "suspend or prohibit the admission of foreigners when he determines it to be in the national interest." (Article 38)

Mexican authorities keep track of every person in the country:

_ Federal, local and municipal police must cooperate with federal immigration authorities upon request: i.e., help in the arrest of illegal immigrants. (Article 73)

_ A National Population Registry tracks every "individual who comprises (sic) the population of the country," verifying each individual's identity. (Articles 85 and 86)

_ A national Catalogue of Foreigners tracks foreign tourists and immigrants (Article 87), assigning each a tracking number. (Article 91)

Foreigners with fake papers or who enter the country under false pretenses may be imprisoned:

_ Foreigners with fake immigration papers may be fined or imprisoned.

(Article 116)

_ Foreigners who sign government documents "with a signature that is false or different from that which he normally uses" are subject to fine and imprisonment. (Article 116)

Foreigners who fail to obey the rules will be fined, deported, and/or imprisoned as felons:

_ Foreigners who fail to obey a deportation order are to be punished. (Article 117)

_ Deported foreigners who try to re-enter Mexico without authorization can be imprisoned for up to 10 years. (Article 118)

_ Foreigners who violate terms of their visa may be sentenced for up to six years in prison. (Articles 119, 120, and 121) Foreigners who misrepresent the terms of their visa (as by working without a permit) can also be imprisoned.

Under Mexican law, illegal immigration is a felony. The General Law on Population says:

_ "A penalty of up to two years in prison and a fine of 300 to 5,000 pesos will be imposed on the foreigner who enters the country illegally." (Article 123)

_ Foreigners with immigration problems may be deported, rather than imprisoned. (Article 125)

_ Foreigners who "(make attempts) against national sovereignty or security" will be deported. (Article 126)

Mexicans who help illegal aliens enter the country are considered criminals:

_ A Mexican who marries a foreigner with the sole objective of helping the foreigner live in the country is subject to up to five years in prison. (Article 127)

_ Shipping and airline companies that bring undocumented foreigners into Mexico will be fined. (Article 132)

All of the above runs counter to what Mexican leaders are demanding of the United States. The stark contrast between Mexico's immigration practices and its American-immigration preachings reveals the Mexican government's agenda: to have a one-way immigration relationship with the United States.

Let's call Mexico's bluff on its interference in U.S. immigration policy. Let us propose, just to make a point, that North American Free Trade Agreement member nations standardize their immigration laws by using Mexico's law as a model.

(J. Michael Waller is a professor of international communication at the Institute of World Politics in Washington.)

TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Culture/Society; Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: aliens; borderlist; illegalaliens; illegalimmigration; illegals; immigrantlist; immigration

1 posted on 04/24/2006 5:26:46 PM PDT by dennisw
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To: dennisw

The great ignored story bump.

2 posted on 04/24/2006 5:31:22 PM PDT by ButThreeLeftsDo
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To: dennisw
Just a few very legitimate polls asking Mexicans if they would like the U.S. take over their country might scare a certain foreign president and their other so-called leaders. Take the game to them.
3 posted on 04/24/2006 5:32:32 PM PDT by Mark (If we had a 3 word message, it would be "We can do better"-- Howard Dean)
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To: dennisw

I guarantee you that Mexico does not deport more illegals than we do. Why did you make up the phony headline?

4 posted on 04/24/2006 5:38:58 PM PDT by Dog Gone
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To: dennisw

Good for one, but not for all?

5 posted on 04/24/2006 5:40:40 PM PDT by Andy from Beaverton (I only vote Republican to stop the Democrats)
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To: dennisw

So after the mexicans take over the U.S. and I try to emigrate to mexico to flee them, I won't be able to get in. That's just great. </end cynical sarcasm>

6 posted on 04/24/2006 5:41:49 PM PDT by gotribe (It's not a religion.)
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Comment #7 Removed by Moderator

To: dennisw

YES! I have heard several radio talk-shows discuss this very fact. You get caught in Mexico illegally - you get an automatic 2 year sentence in prison, then deportation - PERIOD.

From what I hear, Mexico's Southern border is similar to our own - but in Mexico's case - those crossing the border are actively intercepted and subjected to not-so-nice searches and treatment. I'm not suggesting that torture or other ugly treatment is appropriate, but we shouldn't just let them wander on in un-impeded.

8 posted on 04/24/2006 6:26:27 PM PDT by TheBattman (Islam (and liberalism)- the cult of Satan and a Cancer on Society)
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To: Dog Gone

Was that a sarcastic post, or do you honestly believe that? Mexico has a serious problem with illegal crossing of its southern border. But instead of letting them pile-up in country, giving them benefits and free health care and a job, Mexico imprisons them, then deports them - period.

I have no trouble at all believing that Mexico deports more illegals than we do.

9 posted on 04/24/2006 6:31:38 PM PDT by TheBattman (Islam (and liberalism)- the cult of Satan and a Cancer on Society)
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To: TheBattman

We deported over 150,000 in 2004. Somewhere over 200,000 last year, and I have no idea what pace we're on for this year.

I'm not going to take an unsupported comment in an article combined with a phony headline to question whether Mexico is matching those numbers.

It might be true. I'm not going to believe it based on this yet.

10 posted on 04/24/2006 6:46:54 PM PDT by Dog Gone
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To: Dog Gone

Last year Mexico deported over 200,000 Central Americans that were only traveling through with no intention of staying in Mexico on their way to the USA. Mexico deported more Central Americans than did the US Immigration Service.

Things got so tough in Mexico that about three years ago the Mexican government deported 50 Mexican Oaxacans to Guatemala in the mistaken belief that they were Guatemalans from the San Marcos region.

11 posted on 04/24/2006 7:33:48 PM PDT by dennisw (If you know the enemy and know yourself you need not fear the results of a hundred battles-Sun Tzu)
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To: dennisw

"Should we try Mexico's immigration law?"

I'm not sure we should look to Mexico for inspiration on immigration reform. Their entire policy depends on shipping their lower class to the USA. And when Fox tells Bush to jump, he says "how high, senor Fox?"

12 posted on 04/25/2006 3:57:59 PM PDT by Disturbin (Hey Hey, Ho Ho, The Crimaliens Have Got to GO)
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To: dennisw

"Last year Mexico deported over 200,000 Central Americans that were only traveling through with no intention of staying in Mexico on their way to the USA. Mexico deported more Central Americans than did the US Immigration Service."

I guess the Mexican government really only wants Mexicans to inherit America.

13 posted on 04/25/2006 3:58:58 PM PDT by Rick_Michael (Look at profile for current ways to deal with illegals immigration)
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To: Dog Gone

Perhaps the corrected version would be that Mexico deports a greater percentage of the illegal border invaders than we do. I think that is a given.

14 posted on 04/27/2006 10:03:49 AM PDT by Syncro
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