Thursday, March 8, 2007

Investors Business Daily:Even Texas Has Had Enough The home state of the president who said compassion does not stop at the border now says that allowing those seeking a better life to come does not mean denying it to those already here. Not long ago, George W. Bush was governor of Texas, praising the benefits to his state and this nation of immigrants, legal and illegal. He still does, but his political heirs in a state that has a 1,200-mile border with Mexico have embraced a slightly different view. A recent report from the Pew Hispanic Center estimates that 1.4 million to 1.6 million illegal aliens reside in Texas, about 14% of the U.S. total. Another study, this one from the Lone Star Foundation in Austin, said illegal aliens drain $4.5 billion from the Texas economy, mostly in health care costs. As a result, a growing number of Texas politicians on both sides of the aisle are seeking, in the absence of what they perceive to be meaningful action from Washington, to put the brakes on what was once a relative trickle and is now a flood. State Rep. Leo Berman, R-Tyler, is the author of one of more than two dozen proposals that target illegal immigration in Texas, proposals that amount to more stick and less carrot.