Dem Leader: Hispanic Caucus 'Speaks for All of Us' on Amnesty
On Friday, House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-MD) declared that the Congressional Hispanic Caucus speaks for all Democrats on amnesty and immigration.
"Let me make it very clear: the Hispanic caucus speaks for all of us--not just for their caucus members but for the Democratic caucus," Hoyer said at a Capitol Hill press conference with Hispanic caucus members and other Democrat leaders in criticizing Republicans for not passing a border bill.
The Hispanic Caucus has been meeting with President Barack Obama and administration officials like Department of Homeland Secretary Jeh Johnson in recent weeks to demand "broad and expansive" executive actions.
The group recently sent Obama and administration officials a six-page memo asking Obama to give amnesty, by executive fiat, to everyone who would have qualified for it under the Senate's comprehensive amnesty bill. Though Obama is not likely to go that far, numerous reports have indicated that Obama is ready to grant work permits and temporary amnesty to millions of illegal immigrant adults. The Congressional Budget Office determined that the amnesty provisions in the Senate's amnesty bill that the Congressional Hispanic caucus wants would lower the wages of American workers.
House leaders had to pull their border bill on Thursday because it did not explicitly prohibit Obama from enacting his potential executive actions, and they have been scrambling since to cobble together one that would suit onservatives.
Hoyer demanded a more permanent amnesty bill, accused Republicans of just wanting to send a message, and said the Hispanic caucus stands for "millions and millions" of Americans who see America as a "welcoming," "humanitarian," and "fair" country.
"We ought to be passing comprehensive immigration reform now," he said.