Sen. Salazar: Immigration bill not dead yet

“I’m not dead yet!”

An immigration reform measure that appeared to die in the Senate on Thursday could return next month, Sen. Ken Salazar, one of the measure’s chief architects, said today.

At a press conference at his Denver office, the Colorado Democrat said Senators would turn their attention to the energy bill next week, but that he is hopeful they will return to immigration reform in July.

Here’s what needs to happen. Sens. Sessions, DeMint and Cornyn need to lead an effort over the next few weeks to introduce a series of specific bills. One would outlaw “sanctuary cities” and either impose a loss of federal funding, fines or jail time for municipal or county officials who knowingly flout federal immigration law. The second bill would mandate the deportation of criminal illegal aliens to their countries of origin. The third bill would mandate the construction of a fence along the border.

Let’s get the Senate on the record on each of these issues, separate from each other and from the Frankenstein monster that collapsed on Thursday. Let’s get the Senate on the record on whether a majority supports basic law and order or not. And if the bills pass, let’s get the House and president on the record too.

If nothing else, these moves might finally kill off that awful Bush-Kennedy-McCain bill. Maybe.