Sen. Vitter Fights to Protect Domestic Abuse Victims in Immigration Bill

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Immigration Bill

Sen. David Vitter (R-LA) introduced an amendment to the “Gang of Eight” immigration bill that would prevent illegal immigrants convicted of violent crimes against women and children from being given legalized status to stay in the United States. 

The amendment, pursuant to the 1994 Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) that Congress reauthorized last year, and would amend the "Gang of Eight" legislation to prohibit criminals who have been convicted of violent crimes against women and children from getting legalized status inside the United States. Currently, the bill does not specifically bar those perpetrators from legalization. Vitter’s amendment would fix that flaw. 

The bill currently allows illegal immigrants who have committed up to two misdemeanors, of any kind, to stay in the country.

“The purpose of this amendment is protecting the safety of women and children,” Vitter said in a press release announcing the amendment’s introduction. “The Gang of Eight bill, as written, is basically a come one, come all amnesty bill. And while I’m pushing for a completely different approach, the supporters of the bill should at least be able to agree that violence directed at women and children are serious crimes warranting a prohibition of registered provisional immigrant status.”

Fox News’ The Five co-host Andrea Tantaros said on her radio program earlier Tuesday that Gang of Eight member Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) was wrong for claiming the bill was 95 percent “in perfect shape” because it allows illegal immigrant criminals, like those who have been convicted of violent crimes against women and children, to stay in the country with legalized status.

“I don’t think 95 percent of it is perfect,” Tantaros said. “I’m looking at some of things that it allows for. I mean, if you commit identity theft twice but not three times you can still get amnesty. If you break the law twice but not three times, you can stay in this country. Let’s see, what else here. If you beat your wife twice but not three times you can still stay in this country. It doesn’t seem very strict on criminals.”


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