Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL), the ranking member of the Senate Budget Committee, said on Thursday evening that House Republican members should stand up to House GOP leadership to oppose their immigration “principles.”
Sessions said the “principles” represent exactly what was contained in the previously-passed Senate “Gang of Eight” immigration bill.
“Once again, we have the same recycled talking points–crafted, it would appear, with the help of the same consultants and special interests,” Sessions said in a statement. “Each time, the talking points are followed by legislation that fails to match the promises–legislation that, at bottom, ensures only the amnesty and not the enforcement. The leadership talking points look like an attempted repackaging of the tired Gang-of-Eight-style formula that has been proposed, rejected, and re-proposed for years.”
“It is no surprise then that Senator Schumer and former Speaker Pelosi are so encouraged by these developments,” he continued. “But while Democrat leaders and interest groups appear satisfied, this document was not voted upon by the GOP conference and clearly does not represent the consensus of Republican members. Is it not time we pushed aside the stale proposals stitched together in concert with the same lobbyists, and asked what is in the best interests of the hardworking American citizen–and the nation?”
Specifically, Sessions laid out three manners in which the House GOP leadership’s plan reflect the Senate Gang of Eight bill: amnesty before securing the border and enforcing America’s interior immigration laws; a massive increase in legal immigration “that is reducing wages and increasing unemployment”; and an offer of “eventual citizenship” to illegal aliens inside America right now.
“Rank-and-file House Republicans are the last line of defense for working Americans,” Sessions said. “Now is the time for rank-and-file House Republicans to claim the leadership mantle and to say, firmly: our goal is to transition millions of struggling Americans from welfare and joblessness to work and rising wages.”
“The president has not only dismantled enforcement but has delivered for a small group of special interests and CEOs by forcing through the Senate legislation that drastically surges the future flow of new immigrant workers competing against unemployed Americans,” he stated. “There is a reason why these increases are never mentioned in the slick TV ads and radio spots: the American people reject them.”
“Americans earning under $30,000 prefer a reduction to an increase in current record immigration levels by a 3-1 margin,” Sessions explained. “Republicans have the chance to be the one party giving voice to the real-world concerns of the everyday worker whose wages have been flat or falling for more than 10 years.”
Sessions also called on House leadership to actually listen to federal immigration law enforcement officers asking Congress for help in enforcing laws.
“House leaders should support–not ignore–the immigration officers pleading for help,” Sessions said. “They should stand with–not against–unemployed American workers. And they should expose–not join–the president’s campaign to pass an immigration plan that will hollow out our shrinking middle class.”