On Thursday, Vice President Joe Biden said he believes all of the country’s illegal immigrants are “already American citizens.”
“You know, eleven million people live in the shadows. I believe they’re already American citizens,” Biden, who may run for president in 2016, said while addressing the U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. “These people are just waiting, waiting for a chance to contribute fully. And by that standard, eleven million undocumented aliens are already Americans, in my view.”
According to The Hill, Biden also ignored a Congressional Budget Office report that determined that amnesty legislation would lower the wages of American workers and mocked those who have expressed concerns regarding amnesty and an increase in guest workers and high-tech visas.
“So much for the horror stories,” Biden reportedly said after citing studies that said more immigration would lead to economic growth.
On Wednesday, House Democrats unveiled a discharge petition to try to force a vote on comprehensive immigration reform legislation. President Barack Obama said that the bill, which would reward and grant special treatment to those who came to the country illegally, would make sure everybody is treated equally.
“It would make sure everyone plays by the same rules by providing a pathway to earned citizenship for those who are living in the shadows,” Obama said. “Immigration reform is the right thing to do for our economy, our security, and our future.”
Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) addressed the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Wednesday and said that amnesty legislation was inevitable, saying, “To me, it’s not a question of ‘if’ we fix our broken immigration laws. It’s really a question of ‘when.'”
Momentum for immigration reform stalled after Sens. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) blasted the House GOP leadership’s “immigration principles” as “amnesty.” Obama and House Speaker Rep. John Boehner (R-OH), though, have both said they wanted to get immigration legislation “done” this year, which amnesty advocates like Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-IL) have said may be the last chance for such legislation.