Jeff Sessions rejects Marco Rubio’s latest attempt to rewrite history on the Gang of Eight immigration bill.
Contrary to Rubio’s stunning claim that his Senate-passed plan was “not headed towards becoming law,” Sessions says that Rubio’s amnesty plan “was on the verge of being passed…[Paul] Ryan had the votes to get it passed.”
“It was scary to me,” Sessions said of the bill’s prospects to becoming law. “It was a near-run thing.”
Indeed, the bill passed the Senate with 68 votes–one more than is required to enact a treaty under the U.S. constitution–after Marco Rubio blanketed the airwaves to promote the La-Raza backed measure.
The Gang of Eight had been in a drive to get as many votes as possible in the Senate in an effort to bolster its chances in the House. As The Hill reported at the time, “Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) and other members of the gang are pushing for 70 votes to give it maximum political momentum out of the upper chamber.”
Indeed, Sessions said the Gang of Eight and the special interests who championed the bill “had real momentum.”
However, in recent days, Marco Rubio has adopted a new talking point to defend his central role in passing the Gang of Eight amnesty bill through the Senate. Namely, Rubio claims that he never wanted the Obama-backed bill, which he co-authored and ushered through the Senate, to become law.
As Phyllis Schlafly, Mark Krikorian, Mickey Kaus and others have all documented, Rubio made a variety of sensational claims– all proven false— to get the bill passed in the Senate.
Yet, despite repeatedly selling his bill as the “toughest” border enforcement plan in U.S. history, Rubio now claims that he was not satisfied with the bill at the time. “I complained… [that the bill’s] standards are too low, it’ll never pass the House and it’ll never become law,” Rubio told South Carolina voters earlier this week. “The Senate immigration law was not headed towards becoming law.”
However, on Monday’s program of the Mark Levin Show, Jeff Sessions– who tirelessly led the opposition to Rubio’s amnesty and immigration expansion plan– explained that Rubio’s retelling of history is not accurate.
On the program, Levin played a soundbite of Rubio articulating his latest talking point. Sessions said that, contrary to Rubio’s assertion, Paul Ryan– who has a two decade long history of pushing open borders immigration policies– had the votes to pass Rubio’s amnesty plan in the House.
Sessions said: “What happened was that the Gang of Eight met and did this bill, they sent it to the House, I don’t think there was going to be much change on it frankly. I think it was on the verge of being passed. It was scary to me. I was really worried.”
Sessions explained that the special interests behind the Gang of Eight “had spent a billion dollars over a number of years– this group did– to pass this bill. It was designed, they had a campaign– like a presidential campaign to move it to passage. People went on TV– went in our living rooms– telling us Republicans that we needed to vote for this thing and pass it. It was a big money deal.”
“If it hadn’t been for Cantor’s defeat, according to an NPR report recently, now Speaker of the House Ryan had the votes to get it passed… He [Cantor] was defeated in his own primary over immigration, and that’s what stopped it at the last minute. It almost passed.”
Levin pressed Sessions to further clarify: “So Dave Brat’s defeat of Eric Cantor outside of Richmond sent a message– and a tsunami message– that got the attention of House Republicans, correct?” Levin asked.
“That is correct,” Sessions said. “I don’t think there’s any doubt about that.”
As Phyllis Schlafly points out, Rubio continues to support every substantive policy outlined in the Obama-backed bill: “To this day, Rubio has not backed off a single policy in the Gang of Eight bill (see more here),” Schlafly writes. “There is likely no person in the United States of America in a better position to enact mass immigration legislation than a President Rubio.”
Rubio also introduced an immigration expansion bill in January of 2015, backed by his donors, that would allow for unlimited Muslim migration into the United States– on top of today’s quarter-million annual visas for Muslim migrants.