Presidential candidate Ted Cruz is drawing his sharpest distinction yet with donor-class favorite Marco Rubio, by releasing an in-depth, immigration plan.
In an in-depth immigration plan released Friday, presidential candidate Ted Cruz drew his sharpest distinction yet with donor class favorite Marco Rubio.
The new plan helps Cruz counter what he says is Rubio’s “blazingly, on-its-face false” argument that both Senators share similar positions on immigration.
Last week, Cruz attacked Rubio for joining Chuck Schumer and Barack Obama in fighting “tooth and nail to try to jam… amnesty down the throats of the American people.” Following the criticism, Rubio told reporters that Cruz “proposed legalizing people that were here illegally. He proposed giving them work permits. He’s also supported a massive expansion of the green cards. He supported a massive expansion of the H-1B program… so, if you look at it, I don’t think our positions are dramatically different.”
Greg Sargent of The Washington Post mocked Rubio’s response on Twitter, writing, “Marco Rubio to conservatives: Ted Cruz is every bit as soft on ‘amnesty’ as I am, so there!!!” Sargent described Rubio’s argument as a clear attempt to “distract from Cruz’s attack on [Rubio for] his support for Schum-o-bamnesty.”
When Rubio says that Cruz “proposed giving [illegal immigrants] work permits” he is referring to the fact that Cruz offered an amendment that sought to strip citizenship for illegal from Rubio’s bill. As Bloomberg recently wrote, “In painting Cruz as a supporter of legal status for undocumented immigrants, ‘the Rubio campaign is spinning,’ said Mark Krikorian, an immigration activist who was working to scuttle the 2013 bill.”
While Cruz has never introduced legislation that would provide amnesty for illegal immigrants and would increase immigration, Sen. Rubio’s Senate career is largely defined by his partnership with President Obama to do just that.
Sen. Rubio’s Senate career is largely defined by his partnership with President Obama to deliver amnesty and citizenship to illegals. Rubio’s 2013 signature immigration legislation would have expanded welfare for immigrants, dramatically increased annual rates of immigration, and provided citizenship to those who have illegally entered the country or illegally overstayed their visas.
Cruz’a new plan would prevent illegal immigrants from obtaining welfare, end birthright-citizenship which Rubio supports, briefly suspend a highly controversial and unpopular H-1B foreign worker program, and require the enforcement of U.S. immigration laws.
Obama’s Regulatory Amnesties
In his plan, Cruz pledges to “shut down President Obama’s unconstitutional amnesty on day one” of his presidency. “I will end the lawlessness with the stroke of a pen,” Cruz writes. In 2012, Obama offered work-permits to roughly 1 million younger illegal immigrants. In 2014, Obama offered work-permits to roughly 4 million older illegals. So far, courts have blocked Obama’s 2014 plan, but not his 2012 plan.
Cruz’s declaration differs greatly from the stated position of Marco Rubio, who has announced that his “ideal” plan is to keep Obama’s unconstitutional 2012 amnesty in place while he works to enact legislative amnesty. Rubio’s position on ‘dreamer’ amnesty for younger illegals is thus virtually indistinguishable from President Obama who has similarly said he would like to see his executive amnesty replaced with a legislative one. Obama has been perhaps the most high-profile backer of Senator Rubio’s main immigration proposal.
Welfare For Illegals
In his plan, Cruz announced that he would “prohibit illegal immigrants from receiving financial benefits.” Cruz states:
“On average, each household headed by an illegal immigrant in the United States receives over $14,000 in net government benefits per year, according to one study. This transfer of American taxpayer dollars to illegal immigrants entices further illegal entry. Under a Cruz Administration, illegal immigrants will cease receiving government benefits.”
Cruz declared that he will “enforce the public-charge doctrine” so that immigrants coming to the United States will not become a burden on U.S. taxpayers:
“Current federal law requires legal immigrants and their American sponsors to certify that they will be economically self-sufficient. Despite this existing legal requirement, which is known as the public-charge doctrine, an estimated 49 percent of households headed by legal immigrants receive some form of government assistance. This is both illegal and unacceptable. America is a land of opportunity, but should not provide the opportunity to be subsidized by the American taxpayer. A Cruz Administration will require all legal immigrants and their sponsors to demonstrate by compelling evidence that they have the educational and professional tools to provide for themselves and their families.”
By contrast, Rubio’s 2013 immigration plan would have suppressed the public charge law.
As the Federation for American Immigration Reform noted in its analysis of his bill, “[The Rubio-Schumer bill] S.744 requires that DHS waive the public charge law when determining which aliens are eligible for amnesty. (Sec. 2101, p.65) That law prohibits DHS from admitting any alien who is likely to become a public charge.”
Immigration And Americans’ Economic Well-Being
In his plan, Cruz has also pledged to “halt any increases in legal immigration so long as American unemployment remains unacceptably high.” Cruz writes:
“The purpose of legal immigration should be to grow the economy, not to displace American workers. Under no circumstances should legal immigration levels be adjusted upwards so long as work-force participation rates remain below historical averages.”
Today, the nation’s foreign-born population is at a record high of 42.4 million, and there are currently 94 million Americans outside of the workforce.
Yet every day, predominantly due to a change in immigration law enacted in 1965, the U.S. imports an immigrant population that could fill an overcrowded metropolitan high school. Every three years, the United States imports an immigrant population that the size of Los Angeles.
Each year, the autopilot 1965 immigration law adds at least 1 million immigrants, including roughly 600,000 workers, to the economy, where they compete for jobs against the 4.4 million Americans who turn 18 each year. In 2013, Obama used his power to spike the annual inflow up to roughly 2.1 million foreign workers.
Nonetheless, Rubio’s newly introduced I-Squared bill would triple the number of temporary workers admitted on H-1B visas, even though the controversial H-1B program has been used to import workers that have replaced Rubio’s own constituents. In Rubio’s home state of Florida, for example, Disney fired 250 employees and forced them to train their low-wage foreign replacements brought in on H-1B visas.
The H-1B White-Collar Guest-Worker Program
Many of Rubio’s donors benefit greatly from the H-1B program, such as Microsoft and Oracle founder Larry Ellison. Disney has even endorsed Rubio’s new I-Squared legislation, that will allow them to continue the cheap labor practice, which labor experts have described as, an “indentured servitude program.”
In contrast, Cruz pledges to “Suspend the issuance of all H-1B visas for 180 days to complete a comprehensive investigation and audit of pervasive allegations of abuse of the program.” Cruz explains that his loyalties lies to the American citizens, not big corporations who benefit from the cheap labor practice. “We need to ensure that our foreign-worker programs always serve American citizens first. I will always stand with the American worker.”
Ending Birthright Citizenship
In his plan, Cruz also pledges to, “end birthright citizenship.” Cruz writes:
“It makes no sense for us to be providing the tremendous incentive of automatic citizenship to the children of those who enter illegally. Most nations on earth do not do so, and neither should we. Birthright citizenship… was not meant to confer citizenship on the children of people who are here illegally; nor was it intended to confer citizenship on the children of birth tourists, a burgeoning industry that makes a mockery of American citizenship. As President, I will take immediate steps to pass legislation or a constitutional amendment to end birthright citizenship.”
According to 2008 census data analyzed by the Pew Research Center, one anchor baby is delivered in the United States every 93 seconds. According to a 2011 Rasmussen Reports survey, only 28 percent of likely U.S. voters believe that children born to illegal immigrants in this country should automatically be American citizens.
Unlike Cruz, however, Rubio has argued that the U.S. should continue its controversial and unpopular application of the 14th amendment that allows foreign migrants to appropriate U.S. citizenship for their children.
When asked by CNBC why he defends this unpopular application of the 14th amendment, Rubio explained that he supports it because U.S.-born foreign children “are people”: “Those are human beings and ultimately they are people, we’re not just statistics, they’re humans with stories,” Rubio said.
According to polls from Kellyanne Conway, more than two-thirds of all voters– Democrat and Republican– want to see illegal immigrants encouraged to return home by denying them access to American jobs and benefits. But Rubio’s immigration bill would have given green cards– and thus eventual citizenship, welfare and voting privileges– to illegal immigrants.
As CNN recently wrote, Rubio continues to support citizenship for illegals:
“On the campaign trail, Rubio says he’s open to the most controversial aspect of [the Gang of Eight] plan: a pathway to citizenship for the nation’s 11 million undocumented immigrants. Rubio laid out this week a list of criteria illegal immigrants would have to meet to earn citizenship — mirroring the controversial Gang of Eight bill that he has methodically been distancing himself from after it passed the Senate in 2013.”
Jeff Sessions told CNN that such a position should be disqualifying for any one seeking to be the Republican nominee for President. “Supporting citizenship for illegal immigrants should be disqualifying,” Sessions said.
“Just like we can’t have a GOP nominee who supports Obamacare, we can’t have a GOP nominee who supports amnesty.”