“They’re looking for open borders and unlimited entry into this country,” Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ) said of Sens. Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) in a Monday interview on SiriusXM’s Breitbart News Daily with Breitbart News’s Senior Editors-at-Large Rebecca Mansour and Joel Pollak.
Proponents of legislative amnesty, such as Durbin and Graham, Gosar added, mislead the public about the volume of illegal immigrants their proposal would amnesty. A “Durbin-Graham bill” would expand amnesty to “3.5 million DACA-age people, plus their parents” beyond the oft-quoted figure of 700,000 persons, he said.
“The Freedom Caucus is coming out with a statement saying that, unequivocally, we denounce the Graham-Durbin,” said Gosar, repudiating legislative amnesty proposals built on the Obama administration’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) policy. “We want nothing to do with it because it is not a starting point to come from. … They’re looking for open borders and unlimited entry into this country by rewarding illegal immigration, instead of looking at rewarding legal immigration.”
White House spokesperson Hogan Gidley similarly described Graham in a recent interview with CNN as supportive of “open borders”: “So the idea – and back to Graham and Durbin – to pretend they had to get together and have a meeting of the minds so they could come together on immigration— they’ve been in lockstep for decades. They want open borders. They want amnesty. I’m from South Carolina. I’ve known the man for a long time. And it is fine. He can take that position, but to pretend he is anything other than someone who wants open borders and amnesty is disingenuous.”
Widespread support for broad-based legislative amnesty exists within the House of Representatives among a majority of Democrats and plurality of Republicans, speculated Gosar. “So I always have a worry because I think if you were to bring it to an open vote in the House, it could actually get passed with a majority of Democrats and a minority of Republicans.”
Gosar repeated concerns he expressed earlier about Speaker Paul Ryan’s (R-WI) stated commitment to block any legislative amnesty proposals absent support for a majority of House GOP representatives. “Now, we’ve got the speaker on record saying he will not bring something to the Floor unless it has support from the majority of the House Republican Conference, and that it is supported by a Republican effort, but you also have Paul Ryan speaking about leaving, too, and he was one of those people that, I’ve got to tell you, was pushing the Gang of Eight behind closed doors back in 2014.”
The Gang of Eight amnesty bill – partly championed by Graham, alongside Sens. Jeff Flake (R-AZ), John McCain (R-AZ), and Marco Rubio (R-FL), passed the Senate in 2013 by a vote of 68-32, yielding 15 yea votes from Republicans with unanimous Democrat support.
Republicans must not become complacent in opposing legislative amnesty proposals due to White House promises to align with Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC) and Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) on any such bill passed by Congress and awaiting presidential approval, warned Gosar. “We’ve got to be careful here, and we’ve got to make sure that the American public is really tuned in and really vocal about this because the other side, this minority, is actually very vocal and very provocative.”
California’s undermining of federal immigration law is “treasonous” and “secessionary,” said Gosar, pointing to the Golden State’s attorney general’s recent threat to prosecute Californians who comply with federal immigration authorities. He advised the Department of Justice to follow through on enforcement actions within California to prompt legal challenges that would be brought before the Supreme Court: “Look what’s happening in California. You actually have the California legislature that has passed a bill and signed it into law, and you have Xavier Becerra, the attorney general, and Moonbeam, the governor, saying that they will actually prosecute business owners who comply with federal law.”
“We need to pick this fight,” he said. “We want to see the Justice Department go in and do those raids so we can get the Supreme Court on our side, as well, to show that you can’t do this treasonous secessionary type of application with state law trying to trump federal law. It’s not part of the process.”
“I hope that Jeff Sessions is listening and actually goes in and picks the fight,” added Gosar. “Let’s go pick the fight to say, ‘Pony up.’ Let’s make an example of California. They’re cruisin’ for a bruisin.’”
California Gov. Jerry Brown’s refusal to comply with federal immigration law resembled Democrat racial segregationist and the 45th governor of Alabama, George Wallace’s, refusal to comply with federal law prohibiting racial discrimination in 1963. “You can take Moonbeam and George Wallace and put them in the same sentence. So from that standpoint, that’s exactly what’s happening. We’ve got a bully pulpit being extorted by California, and we’ve got to put them to rest. … In the Constitution, the rule of immigration and enforcement is a federal issue.”
Gosar listed the following elements as essential to any immigration reform proposal: ending chain migration, ending the “Diversity Immigrant Visa” lottery, federal funding for a southern border, and implementation of a national E-Verify mandate for employers.
Birthright citizenship must also be revisited, said Gosar, calling for a Supreme Court challenge on the issue. “The court is not firm on [birthright citizenship]. It was answered based on a legal resident with a legal green card, not an illegal, and if that’s the case, then why are the consulate and embassy workers that we have here prohibited from having their children being citizens of this country? They should have a right in court saying, ‘Listen, there’s something wrong with that interpretation.’”
Proponents of legislative amnesty, added Gosar, seek to reward illegal immigration while undermining the work of lawful immigrants.
Breitbart News Tonight airs Monday through Friday on SiriusXM’s Patriot channel 125 from 9:00 p.m. to midnight Eastern (6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Pacific).
Follow Robert Kraychik on Twitter @rkraychik.