House Judiciary Chairman Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) wants to “move now” on amnesty legislation.
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor’s (R-VA) shockingly lost his primary last week because of his support for amnesty legislation, and illegal immigrants continue to flood across the border and strain America’s resources. Yet in an interview with Juan Williams for Fox News Latino Monday, Goodlatte said he also is in favor of passing amnesty legislation with the support of House Democrats.
“And I’m ready to move now. I’m ready to move after the election. I’m ready to move in the next Congress,” he said after acknowledging that legislation would go forward only if a majority of House Republicans support it. “I do believe that immigration reform needs to be done, because the status quo is simply not adequate. And for those who are very concerned about illegal immigration, it should not be adequate for them either.”
According to the Roanoke Times, Goodlatte also told a roundtable “organized by the Bedford Area Chamber of Commerce” Monday that there needs to be an “appropriate status” for all of the country’s illegal immigrants. That sentiment has lured many illegal immigrants from Central America to the United States with hopes of getting some type of amnesty or “appropriate status” once they enter the country.
Before Cantor’s loss, Democrats and Republicans mentioned that the House could act on amnesty legislation before August. House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) even said he was “hellbent” on passing a bill this year. Though Cantor’s loss was seen as a referendum against amnesty legislation, Goodlatte still told Fox News Latino that the “appropriate thing is to take the next step in this step by step approach” and “start moving legislation to the floor of the House.”
President Barack Obama has said he would not sign immigration legislation that does not have a pathway to citizenship provision for all of the country’s illegal immigrants, and Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-IL) has said he would favor Goodlatte’s piecemeal approach only if the various pieces make up a comprehensive bill.
Goodlatte acknowledged that if there is not an “an overwhelming majority” of Republicans who support various amnesty and immigration bills, then “we have to have some Democrats come and support us.”
“We’ve already passed four bills out of the committee,” he said. “I believe that there is bipartisan support for those and for other bills that would come along behind those bills.”
Goodlatte’s SKILLS Act is one of the bills that have passed out of committee. That bill would double the number of high-tech visas, even though scholars and numerous studies have found that there is actually a surplus of American high-tech workers. In March, Goodlatte met with Silicon Valley donors who donated $10,000 to $40,000 to his campaign demanded a timetable for legislation that would at least increase the number of high-tech visas that Silicon Valley has been coveting.