John McCain Leads Liberal Republican Attacks On Scott Walker’s Immigration Stance

AP Photo/Joe Skipper
AP Photo/Joe Skipper

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker has clearly awakened the Washington establishment beast.

Not only is the liberal media and establishment right-of-center coming out guns-a-blazing at Walker over his pro-American worker position on legal immigration, but now Sen. John McCain (R-AZ)—the most pro-amnesty Republican there is, someone who worked for years with the late Sen. Ted Kennedy (D-MA) on immigration—is leading a charge against Walker’s new position.

“I think most statistics show that they fill part of the workforce that are much needed. We have, and I’m a living example of, the aging population. We need these people in the workforce legally,” McCain said when asked about Walker’s position by mainstream media reporters, according to the openly liberal Talking Points Memo’s Sahil Kapur.

“I do,” McCain added when asked if he worries Walker’s position makes the GOP look “anti-immigrant.”

“I do,” McCain said:

And I think that one of the biggest mistakes that Mitt Romney made in his campaign was his comment about “self-deport[ation].” Look, the reality is we are losing the support of the Hispanic community. The reality is the fastest growing part of our population in America is the Hispanic community. We need to address the issue. And we need to do it in a constructive fashion, or we do not win the 2016 election. I can’t be more specific.

McCain is likely to face a primary challenge from either Rep. Matt Salmon (R-AZ) or state Sen. Kelli Ward due to the fact he’s abandoned conservative principles on so many major issues—immigration chief among them.

Others, like Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) and Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) joined McCain to also attack Walker for standing up for American workers.

“I basically think that’s poppycock,” Hatch said. “We know that when we graduate PhDs and master’s degrees and engineers, we don’t have enough of any of those. … The fact is you can always point to some negatives, but the positives are that we need an awful lot more STEM [science, technology, engineering, and mathematics] people. … Frankly a lot of us are for legal immigration and for solving this problem.”

Portman adds:

I’m a supporter of the H-1B program and I think that’s what he was referring to probably, because that’s been the issue. We want legal immigration. … As a party we’ve always embraced immigrants coming here legally, following the rules. And it’s enriched our country immeasurably. It’s who we are. It’s the fabric of our success.

Sen. John Thune (R-SD), the Senate GOP conference chairman, criticized Walker as well.

“I think if you talk to businesses in this country, they need workers,” Thune said. “We have a workforce issue in this country and I know in my home state of South Dakota where the unemployment rate is 2.3 percent, they can’t find workers. So having a robust legal immigration process helps us fill jobs that otherwise wouldn’t be getting filled.”


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