Earlier today, Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) spoke on the Senate floor against the Motion to Proceed to immigration reform. He argued for major fixes to the proposal that would make it passable by both houses of Congress. As it stands, the bill will not pass the House, Cruz declared, and that’s unfortunate because like most people, he would like to see “commonsense immigration reform.” Unfortunately, all of the amendments he introduced to improve the bill were struck down by Democrats.
“I very much want commonsense immigration reform to pass,” Cruz said in his remarks. “As written, this bill will not pass into law. And if this bill did become law, it would not solve the problem. Indeed, it would make the problem of illegal immigration that we have today worse rather than better.”“If you likewise want to see commonsense immigration reform pass, then you have reason to be both optimistic and pessimistic. You have reason for optimism because there is widespread bipartisan agreement on many, many aspects of immigration. Outside of Washington, DC, there is widespread bipartisan agreement that, number one, our current immigration system is broken. It is not working. Number two, that we have to get serious about securing the borders, about doing everything we can to stop illegal immigration, that in a post-9/11 world it doesn’t make any sense that we don’t know who is coming into this country, we don’t know their history, we don’t know their background. And number three, that we need to improve and streamline legal immigration, that we need to remain a nation that doesn’t just welcome but that celebrates legal immigration. On those basic principles, there is widespread bipartisan agreement, and if this body were to focus on those areas of bipartisan agreement, that’s how we would get an immigration bill passed into law.“The reason, Mr. President, however, for pessimism is that to date the conduct of the White House and the Senate Democrats who have been driving this process suggests that they are more interested in finding a partisan issue to campaign on in 2014 and 2016 than they are in actually passing a bill to fix our broken immigration system.“The only thing that can change that is if the American people speak up. The only thing that can change that is if the stakeholders make clear to the Obama White House, to the Senate Democrats failure is not an option, that if this fails because as a political matter you insisted on a path to citizenship and threw everything else overboard, that failure would be unacceptable. I very much hope we work together in a bipartisan manner to fix this problem in a way that secures the border, in a way that respects rule of law and in a way that improves legal immigration so we remain a nation that welcomes and celebrates legal immigrants.”