In a tweet last week, radio’s Laura Ingraham taunted House Budget Committee chairman Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), a top champion of immigration reform, saying that because he supports raising immigration levels, he should take the first step and replace his congressional staff with foreign workers.
“Maybe we should replace @RepPaulRyan’s staff with cheaper foreign labor since they like guest workers so much,” Ingraham tweeted last week, with a link to a National Review article in which reporter Joel Gehrke had interviewed Ryan.
In the interview with Gehrke, Ryan said amnesty prospects–for which he has offered support–are dead this Congress because of the border crisis.
“It has poisoned it now, that’s for sure,” Ryan said of the border crisis’s effects on the immigration debate. “For this session, I believe that’s right.”
Gehrke detailed how Ryan–Mitt Romney’s running mate in 2012–told a group of Hillsdale College students that he supports allowing illegal aliens in America legal status and the ability to stay in this country. Ryan said:
For the undocumenteds, I’d give a probationary period. I’d have people earn their way toward just a work permit by putting them on probation. They’d waive their right to an appeal. They’d sign an affidavit that they broke the law. They’d pay a fine, do a background check, they’d have to learn civics, learn English — basically assimilate; can’t be on welfare, and have to work, and can’t have a criminal record, of course. They’d have to do that for five years. And until, if and until, the government gets it’s border secure and all these security measures, they can’t get out of probation until the government has done it’s job securing the border. Then, after five years, if they did everything right on their terms of probation, give them a work permit just to be able to work, just like a guest worker program.
Ryan argued that process is not “amnesty:”
That took me, what, 12 sentences? That’s the problem with this stuff. People say, ‘amnesty!’ No, it’s taking a problem that’s intractable, that’s been around forever, and trying to fix it in a way that as best guarantees as you can that we’re not going to be in the same [situation] ten years from now. And that really means: have employer laws that work; have a border that’s secure; and have a legal immigration system that works well.
Gehrke also wrote that Ryan wants an improved guest worker program “because it would mean that only criminal immigrants were trying to cross illegally,” noting earlier in his piece that Ryan’s defense of granting legal status–what he says isn’t “amnesty”–to illegal aliens and a broader immigration package would help deal with “labor shortages in the United States.”
The argument that there are “labor shortages” in America is something that most opponents of amnesty laugh at, given high unemployment rates across low-skilled and high-skilled markets. “Paul ‘labor shortages’ Ryan apparently thinks American workers don’t deserve jobs,” Ingraham said in another tweet about that National Review article.
Ryan’s office hasn’t responded to Breitbart News’ request for comment in response to Ingraham’s tweets.