Friday on Fox News Channel program, host Tucker Carlson criticized Republican members of the House and Senate that were opposed to the possible rollback of President Barack Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) immigration policy.
The “Tucker Carlson Tonight” host argued that the same party that was able to benefit from President Donald Trump’s election win last fall is now opposing on many issues, including DACA.
That according to Carlson suggested some congressional Republican, including House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI), Rep. Mike Coffman (R-CO) and Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Thom Tillis (R-NC), had more of an “affinity” for Obama’s policies than for Trump’s policies.
Transcript as follows:
CARLSON: Republicans won big last fall. Not simply because they weren’t the party of Hillary Clinton but because they promised to undo key parts of the Barack Obama legacy. So far, they haven’t. Congressional Republicans could not come together to repeal Obamacare. They did not defund Planned Parenthood. They definitely don’t want to build a border wall. But now almost 10 months into the Republican Congress, top Republicans on Capitol Hill have finally found an issue they can really rally around: preserving President Obama’s immigration policy.
The Trump administration has announced that next Tuesday will decide the fate of DACA. That’s an Obama era program which apparently illegally gives work permits to illegal immigrants who arrived in the country as children. Killing that program would fulfill one of the Trump campaign’s promises. It would also fit with the Republican Party’s stated position against amnesty and in favor of enforcing the law rather than granting politicized immunity.
Yet, Republican leaders in Congress are scrambling to preserve DACA.
This morning in a radio interview, Speaker of the House Paul Ryan begged the president to keep the program in place until Congress can pass a bill granting amnesty to the illegal immigrants DACA covers. Listen.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
RYAN: I actually don’t think you should do that. I believe that this is something Congress has to fix.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
CARLSON: Speaker Ryan is not alone in that position. Congressman Mike Coffman of Colorado says he wants to force a vote on the so-called BRIDGE Act. It’s a Democratic crafted bill that would give legislative sanction to the DACA. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina is backing the same bill in the Senate. Also in the Senate, Thom Tillis of North Carolina is already crafting amnesty legislation he’s calling conservative — a conservative alternative to DACA.
According to news accounts, Tillis’ bill would give 2.5 million illegal immigrants a pathway to citizenship provided they lack a serious criminal background, apparently opposed to an unserious one.
Tillis is already on the record opposing a border wall. He is an avid supporter of letting low-wage workers of foreign countries into this country. So, don’t count on his legislation doing anything to stem the future flow of illegal immigrants.
We’re supposed to believe this is the conservative position. The only thing it preserves is President Obama’s policy priorities. You know, given all of this, it’s also worth nothing three years ago when he was running for the Senate and actually trying to appeal to voters, Thom Tillis promised that he opposed amnesty and insisted the border had to be secure before any kind of immigration reform became law. It looks like he didn’t mean any of that.
We asked Senator Tillis to come on tonight. He declined. But we bet if we asked him or any other pro-amnesty Republican on the Hill, ‘What is wrong with enforcing immigration laws on the books?’ They’d tell you it’s cruel to deport people who have lived here for a while. OK, that’s a fair point.
But it would be easier to take if our elites showed a similar concern for hurting American citizens and there are many of those. Like the one in four of working age that don’t have jobs right now. Or the 14 million on disability, the one in six on antidepressants, the more than 50,000 who died of drug ODs just in the last year. That’s almost as many as were killed during the entire decade of the Vietnam War.
You hear about those people occasionally in Washington. You hear what those poor DACA kids deal with a lot more and that tells you everything.
Donald Trump ran in 2016 with almost no support from the Republican establishment. In many cases, they actively denounced him. They almost all despised him. But he won anyway because his campaign promises had powerful appeal and Republicans on the Hill were able to benefit by extension.
Rather than take advantage of their good luck and consider whether they ought to try to help the president achieve those campaign promises, Republicans have repeatedly shown their campaign pledges were lies and their chief interest is in protecting the tiny donor class that funds their campaigns.
They show more affinity in many cases for President Obama’s policies than they do for the current president’s. No wonder that Congress’ approval ratings are generally lower than those of the historically unpopular president. When a bunch of republicans are crushed in next fall’s congressional election, they will try to blame the president. It might have been easier to listen to the president’s voters.
Follow Jeff Poor on Twitter @jeff_poor