As we’ve reported, the U.S. Senate voted earlier this week to advance the so-called “Gang of Eight” immigration reform plan, a bill that currently lacks real border security provisions.

After voting to advance the bill to debate, Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul has introduced an amendment that would increase congressional oversight of border security.

Rand Paul offers border security plan in immigration debate

The Washington Post reports:

Speaking at a gathering of conservative Latino groups, Paul made the case that his proposal, called “Trust but Verify,” would make the sweeping legislation more palatable to Republicans who are hesitant to endorse the bill that would ultimately provide a path to citizenship for up to 11 million illegal immigrants. [...]

Paul’s amendment would require the Department of Homeland Security to implement specific border security measures, including hundreds of miles of additional fencing along the U.S.-Mexico border, and provide a report to Congress each year on its progress.

Then Congress would vote annually as to whether the agency had met its goals. Each year, another group of illegal immigrants would earn legal work visas if the metrics are met, Paul said.

“Conservatives are wary about amnesty,” Paul told the mostly Latino audience, using the term Republicans use for granting legal status to undocumented workers. “My plan does not grant amnesty or move people to the front of the line. The solution is not amnesty or deportation. It’s a middle ground that you might call probation.”

As it stands now, the Gang of Eight proposal working its way through the Senate would grant illegal immigrants permanent residence status after a decade and full U.S. citizenship three years after that if they pay fines & taxes and avoid run-ins with law enforcement.

Conservative columnist Michelle Malkin argues that current immigration reform proposals are more about securing a Democratic majority than rule of law:

Obama and his open-borders pals pay lip service to fairness and the rule of law for the cameras. But behind closed doors and beyond the reach of public accountability, they’ve already paved the way for mass deportation waivers. Read their actions, not their lips. The official White House operating policy is: No illegal alien left behind. “Smarter enforcement” means no enforcement.

Remember: Exactly one year ago this week, the president announced he would halt all deportations and start granting work permits to an estimated 2.1 million illegal aliens who entered the country as children.