Monday, April 24, 2006

Sen. Hillary Clinton Wants Mexico Border Barrier

Taking her hardest line yet against illegal immigrants, Sen. Hillary Clinton told reporters she wants U.S. borders secured with a wall or fence, possibly surveillance drones and infrared cameras. Clinton's proposal _ which came just weeks after she blasted Republican crackdowns on illegal immigrants as un-Christian _ raised the ire of activists. But she tempered her remarks by saying that, while she supports a barrier to stem new illegal immigrants, she favors a legalization process for the 11 million undocumented aliens already here. Clinton envisions a two-stage plan in which border security is beefed up, followed by legalization efforts in a year or two."A physical structure is obviously important," the New York Democrat and possible presidential contender said. "A wall in certain areas would be appropriate," she said, endorsing a high-tech "smart fence" that could spot people approaching from 200 or 300 yards. Embracing both conservative and liberal goals, Clinton said she backs citizenship rather than amnesty for illegal immigrants, as long as it's "earned." At the same time, she welcomed tougher enforcement of federal laws punishing employers who hire illegal immigrants. Clinton also does not support a work and school boycott by advocacy groups set for May 1. At a planning meeting Saturday for a human chain demonstration in the five New York City boroughs that day, immigrant advocates booed Clinton's get-tough stance.