Majority Leader Eric Cantor offered a new explanation for why he supports granting amnesty to individuals brought into the country illegally as minors, often called “DREAMers” in reference to the “DREAM Act.”
It’s “Biblical,” he said in a local radio interview.
“I’ve always said that there’s a Biblical root and a tradition in this country that says we don’t hold children liable for their parents’ acts and when you have kids who may have been brought here let’s say at 2 months old unbeknownst to them and they’ve been here all their lives and they want to serve in our military, my position has been I agree with that principle,” he said. “They should be allowed to serve in our military and be allowed to become part of this country as a citizen, but not their parents. Not the ones who committed the illegal act. So this is the difficulty,” Cantor said this week on The John Fredericks Show.
Cantor went on say that Obama’s intransigence is the reason there has not yet been immigration reform.
“The president has said he doesn’t want to pursue this type of a first step approach he doesn’t want to pursue a path that would say let’s do the things we can agree on and insist instead on a blanket amnesty bill,” the Virginia Republican said. “And I’m opposed to that and as long as the president says my way or the highway all or nothing, we can’t get anything done.”
Cantor also spoke about his opposition to the Senate “Gang of Eight” bill.
“I’ve always opposed Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV) and Barack Obama’s amnesty bill coming out of the Senate,” he said.
“The reason it is not coming up in the House is I have not scheduled it to come to the floor of the House because we’re not going to take that amnesty bill up. I’ve always said that we are a country of immigrants, but we are a country of laws,” he said, adding there needs to be better enforcement of the law, specifically at the nation’s borders.
Cantor, who is facing a primary challenge, has raised eye brows in recent weeks for distributing mailers declaring him to be a “conservative Republican” who is “stopping the Obama Reid Plan to give illegal aliens amnesty” while at the same time pushing amnesty for the children of illegal immigrants and supporting a measure that would allow so-called DREAMers to enlist in the military and earn citizenship.
In recent years, Evangelical Christians have shown greater openness to immigration reform. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL), the author of the DREAM Act, visited Wheaton College, IL – the so-called “Harvard of Christian schools” – last year to push for the Gang of Eight bill, for example.
However, some Christians have pushed back against the notion that the Bible’s passages on immigration go anywhere near requiring amnesty for people who entered the country illegally.
“Religious lobbyists for this approach often portray their political cause as the clear Gospel way. But the Bible offers no specific legislative guidance on immigration law, about which people of faith may disagree,” Mark Tooley, President of the Institute on Religion and Democracy, recently told Breitbart News.
Cantor voted against the DREAM Act in 2010.