The National Journal‘s Major Garrett is out with a new report detailing how House GOP leadership plans to push an immigration bill that would grant amnesty to America’s at least 11 million illegal aliens in 2014, a bill that would move after GOP primary season and have House Budget Committee chairman Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) leading the way.
“Boehner has to wait for the bulk of primary season to pass (May or June) before serious immigration work can begin,” Garrett wrote.
By then, much of the legislation can be written and the calendar cleared for action in the summer. The House GOP leader on the budget deal, Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., may emerge as a key figure. Ryan’s pedigree is not on immigration policy, but conference conservatives will follow him. He has the scars of the budget fights, the experience of a national campaign, and a wide-open calendar to freelance now that spending numbers have been set for the next two years. Ryan has boundless policy energy and equally boundless ambition. If Boehner needs or wants a new driver on immigration, one tested by fire from the right, he may well choose Ryan.
Garrett then quoted a radio interview Ryan did in Wisconsin on Monday, where he talked about immigration.
“First we must have the border security, and independently verified,” Ryan said in the radio interview. “First we must have the interior enforcement like E-Verify in place and independently verified before the other parts of the law that they want to go into place go into place. So it’s not a ‘trust, hope, and promise.’ It’s a ‘get what we want, verify it’s there.’ Then the rest of the law can be triggered.”
“Guaranteed border security, guaranteed interior enforcement, no amnesty–then I think that’s productive,” Ryan added. “I think that’s in our interest. I think that’s good for our country.”
A GOP aide to a congressional committee said of Ryan’s radio comments that it is clear Ryan “is describing a ‘Gang of Eight’ style bill that has amnesty first and pointless triggers later” that is “a huge handout to big business, too.”
Ryan has not said that border security and interior enforcement must be implemented before any bills that deal with legalization of illegal aliens’ statuses or a massive increase in guest workers or legal immigration are taken up in the House. A massive increase in legal immigration or guest workers would cut into unemployed and underemployed Americans’ job hunting prospects.
Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) said on the Senate floor earlier this week that the House should not take up any immigration bills until President Barack Obama actually starts securing the border and enforcing the laws of the land.
“Speaker Boehner of the House has said that they will not take up the Senate bill, but will take up several immigration bills in a step-by-step approach,” Sessions said on the Senate floor.
But does anyone believe this administration will actually enforce anything that they pass? They’re not enforcing current law. I urge the House to ensure that before they get into passing laws and conferring on any comprehensive bill, they start insisting and help us insist that this administration enforce the law that we have. If they just refuse to do it, why should we assume that passing a law has any ability to change the path we are on? The first responsibility of Congress must be to restore the rule of law, to secure the border, and to bring the Administration into compliance with the laws of the United States. Until that happens, there’s no reason or basis to offer up any legalization plans considered in congress. Congress cannot capitulate into this overreach.
Sessions added, “no one is above the law.”
“Failure to uphold our laws violates our legal and moral responsibilities to our own citizens and those who came to this country legally and creates the preconditions necessary for a repressive and capricious government,” Sessions said.
Last week, Ryan helped muscle the “Bipartisan Budget Agreement,” a deal he cut with Senate Budget Committee chairwoman Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA), through the House. The bill is expected to pass the Senate on Wednesday.
To win the House GOP conference, Ryan used a series of talking points about the bill that were not accurate–as Breitbart News has detailed over the course of a series of stories. Ryan, according to Senate Budget Committee ranking member Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL), used double counting techniques that Democrats employed with Obamacare. Ryan claimed the bill would result in $23 billion in deficit reduction when, in reality–after taking the double counting and the interest on borrowed money for new spending into account–it would end up increasing the deficit by at least $15.5 billion.
Ryan’s committee also published a document falsely claiming that disabled and injured veterans’ pensions would be protected from slashes in the Ryan-Murray budget, a claim Ryan’s spokesman admitted to Breitbart News was inaccurate. Ryan’s committee scrubbed the document of the false claim and his spokesman will not answer when asked repeatedly if Ryan or his committee told members of the House of Representatives of the error and correction before they voted for his deal with Murray.
Moving forward into the immigration fight, Ryan is even more pro-amnesty than Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) was. Ryan is still publicly supportive of a conference committee between a group of House immigration bills and the Senate’s “Gang of Eight” legislation, even though Rubio and House Speaker John Boehner, Majority Leader Eric Cantor, Majority Whip Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), and Judiciary Committee chairman Bob Goodlatte have all come out against conference.
Rubio had used misleading talking points on immigration, something for which he has paid dearly politically and is still attempting to recover. Since Ryan has used misleading talking points on the budget, the question moving into next year will become whether or not Ryan has political capital left to burn or whether conservatives in the House start standing up to him.