It has been clear for months that the border crisis has radically changed the politics of immigration, but now a liberal senator is bragging about his collaboration with arch conservative Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) on the issue.
Speaking at the Minnesota FarmFest in Redwood County last week, according to video obtained by Breitbart News, Franken explained his support for the “Gang of Eight” immigration bill by saying, “I am on the Judiciary Committee, I participated in the markup of that. I had six amendments passed, one of which was cosponsored by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX).”
Franken went on to say, “If our bill had become law, there would be 19,000 more border guards on our border,” and he touted support for the bill by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and Farm Bureau.
Franken’s amendment, which, according to a Franken press release Cruz joined as a cosponsor during the Senate Judiciary Committee markup in May 2013, was designed to afford individuals detained in immigration enforcement actions a range of opportunities to quickly arrange care for their children after they had been detained.
For example, the amendment instructs law enforcement officials to quickly allow such people at least two phone calls to arrange for child care and provide contact information for child welfare agencies in the event providing care is impossible.
But the politics here are more important. Of six obscure amendments from over a year ago, and of eight people who cosponsored them – including the Senate Republican Whip, Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX), and the top Republican on the Judiciary Committee, Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) – it was Cruz’s support that was on the tip of Franken’s tongue.
Polls show Franken with a solid lead over Republican businessman Mike McFadden. But even Democratic pollsters are warning that the border crisis is quickly making immigration toxic to people who, like Franken, have voted to afford citizenship to millions of illegal aliens.
“What had been an issue only in Republican primaries is starting to be a general election albatross, and I predict that if the president goes ahead and gives amnesty to five million people, this thing will blow up on the Democrats,” Pat Cadell, the former pollster for President Jimmy Carter, said on Fox News.
He also declared that Democrats could no longer get away with simply talking about securing the border while failing to do so.
With the election under three months from now, Democrat Franken’s move is to associate himself with a conservative icon in the Senate.