House Judiciary Chairman Faces Demands From Pro-Amnesty Megadonors
House Judiciary Committee Chairman Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA), one of the most powerful members of Congress on immigration issues, is holding a major fundraiser Wednesday with pro-amnesty forces in Silicon Valley -- and his donors seem to think they can tell him what to do.
Some of the donors poised to fork over between $10,000 and $40,000 to spend the evening with Goodlatte say they are demanding assurances that Goodlatte will detail what the House GOP's schedule is for passing immigration legislation.
Ron Conway, a venture capitalist and Silicon Valley donor, told Roll Call:
In this case, because there’s been mixed messages from the Republicans, before I write my check, I wanted some assurances that Bob Goodlatte would be prepared to discuss immigration reform and what the timetable is for immigration reform, because we’re coming down the wire here with the [midterm] elections [approaching] and we need accountability.
Conway added that he was waiting to hear from the event ogranizers to "assure us that Bob Goodlatte can give us a tangible schedule. … Then it’s worth it for us to cut the big checks. Bob Goodlatte is a huge gatekeeper in this regard, and we need his help," he said.
The episode is another example of the powerful hidden hand of the GOP donor class, which is pushing amnesty behind-the-scenes. As Breitbart News has been reporting, Silicon Valley companies covet the provision in the Senate's immigration bill that would initially double the number of H1-B visas issued per year and could eventually triple the number from 65,000 to 180,000 a year. In addition, Goodlatte's "SKILLS" Act, which is also backed by Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) and has passed out of committee, would also double the number of H1-B visas that the high-tech industry covets. As a result, the cost of labor would be lowered, resulting in more profits for companies associated with donors who are cutting checks up to $40,000. Silicon Valley executives have been complaining about a shortage of high-tech American workers, which studies have found to be a myth.
As Breitbart News reported, Goodlatte, the Chairman of the powerful House Judiciary Committee that oversees immigration legislation, recently said that he saw "no reason" why illegal immigrants should not be granted amnesty as part of a broad legislative deal.
In an interview with Telumundo, Goodlatte said:
If we can have a way to get [enforcement] up and operating, I see no reason why we can’t also have an agreement that shows how people who are not lawfully here can be able to be lawfully here – able to live here, work here, travel to and from their home country, be able to own a business, pay their taxes.
After amnesty opponents such as Sens. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Jeff Sessions (R-AL) denounced the House GOP leadership's "immigration principles" as "amnesty," momentum for immigration legislation stalled, with GOP leaders vowing not to move forward on legislation until they could trust President Barack Obama to enforce the country's immigration laws.
Recently, though, President Barack Obama and House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) have said they want to get amnesty legislation done this year.
This article has been updated