Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Kirstjen Nielsen are slamming a group of senators’, led by Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ), latest proposal to give amnesty to millions of illegal aliens, calling it “totally unjustifiable.”
The group of six pro-amnesty Senators, known as the “Gang of Six,” were expected to roll out their expansive amnesty plan this week, which would not only give a pathway to U.S. citizenship beginning with 3.5 million illegal aliens enrolled and eligible for the President Obama-created Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program but also to the parents of those beneficiaries.
The Senators behind the amnesty plan include Flake, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Sen. Cory Gardner (R-CO), Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL), Sen. Michael Bennet (D-CO), and Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ).
The expansive amnesty plan would:
- Give DACA and DACA-eligible illegal aliens a pathway to U.S. citizenship
- Give amnesty to the parents of DACA illegal aliens
- Make no cuts to legal immigration levels, whereby more than one million legal immigrants enter the U.S. every year
- Transfers the 50,000 visas through the Diversity Visa Lottery into two other visa categories
- Does not fund the estimated $18 billion U.S.-Mexico border wall
- Does not mandate E-Verify to bar employers from hiring illegal aliens over American workers
In an interview with Fox News’s Tucker Carlson, Sessions shut down the amnesty plan, saying it was “totally unjustifiable” that the group of pro-amnesty senators would release a plan that did not meet the requirements outlined by President Trump.
CARLSON: So apparently here are the features of the proposal we are looking at. It would fund about 10% of the proposed border wall about 70 miles out of 2,000. No enforcement basically can’t deport anybody. Expand chain migration, makes diversity lottery more unskilled. It doesn’t seem like it’s moving in the right direction.
AG SESSIONS: Totally unjustifiable, that cannot be, that is not a proposal that has any prospect of success. They need to look at the proposal in the House Judiciary Committee that Congressman Goodlatte has proposed, that will work. It will end the illegality, make a tremendous process to end illegality and make the system work better. That’s what the American people want, and the objectors, the sanctuary cities, the New Jersey policy you just talked about, those are policies that favor illegality, they subsidize illegality, they encourage illegality. American people are sick of that it’s time to end it. The choice is clear and it’s going to be even clearer this year. We’re going to have some votes in Congress. People need to be held to account, are you are going to fix this system, create a system that protects America? We know as you said 73% of the people who have been arrested for terrorism came here were born abroad. So if they had been properly screened and rejected we wouldn’t have had these attacks in our country. [Emphasis added]
CARLSON: Someone I spoke to with direct knowledge said in his meeting with The President on immigration Lindsey Graham summed up his argument by reciting Emma Lazarus’ poem from the statue of liberty. Not really a case you would expect for Republicans to be making. Why aren’t there more articulate Republican members of the Congress makings case that you just made?
AG SESSIONS: Well I wish there were. Actually, I think people need to get focused on this. We are not against immigration. The President is not against immigration. What the American people want have a right to, and what’s good for America is a lawful system of immigration, and when we admit people to our country, we should be like Canada. We should evaluate them and make sure they are going to be lawful, they are not threats to us, they have the education and skill level to prosper in America. That’s good for them and good for America. What good does it do to bring in somebody who is illiterate in their own country, has no skills and is going to struggle in our country and not be successful. That is not what a good nation should do and we need to get away from it. A good debate needs to be happening this year. The President is right on the lottery. That’s ridiculous, how absurd is that for a policy for a great nation. We need to tighten up on our admission of people from dangerous areas of the globe where we can’t vet, where we have high numbers of terrorists that live in those areas. We should certainly be more careful and limit that kind of immigration.
Likewise, Nielsen rebuked the “Gang of Six” amnesty plan in a heated discussion with Durbin during a Senate Homeland Security Committee hearing, saying she could not agree to their amnesty package.
DURBIN: Madam Secretary, the president made it clear in that meeting that one of the conditions for his assent, or agreement to protect DACA, was $20 billion, so he could build this wall in one year.
The fate of John and Alejandra lies in the balance here. The president is insisting on something that is physically, legally impossible as a condition for him to give them a chance to be here in the United States legally.
Now, you’ve seen, because you commented on it on Fox News, the proposal, which Senator Graham and I, as well as four other Senators have made on a bipartisan basis. And you’ve rejected it.
You said at one point, I believe, that — let me see if I can quote here, “There’s nothing in there that would prevent us from getting here again.”
Are you aware of the fact that included in this proposal is the entire request of the administration for border security in this fiscal year, $1.6 billion for walls and barriers and fences, and another billion dollars for technology, exactly what you asked for?
If you don’t believe this is going to solve the problem, which is what you said on Fox News, why did the administration request it in the first place?
NIELSEN: Well, sir, that’s not all we requested, as you know. We also requested to close the loopholes that serve as the pull factors that continue to exacerbate the problem.
I cannot apprehend if I cannot remove. That’s not border security.
DURBIN: Let me — let me add: the first meeting we had last week, we agreed, and the president agreed there would be two phases to this conversation. The first, immediately, to deal with the DACA challenge and the three other elements the president (inaudible)…
NIELSEN: Including border security, sir.
DURBIN: … including border security, every penny that you asked for. And then the president said, phase 2 goes into comprehensive immigration reform; many of the issues which you described as must-haves. We understand that. To put the entire burden of immigration reform on the shoulders of these DACA recipients is fundamentally unfair, not practical, and jeopardizes their future and their lives.
What we’re trying to do is an honest, bipartisan approach to deal with the first phase of this and you have rejected it.
NIELSEN: I thank you for your passion. I hope you understand mine. I cannot agree to a deal that does not give the tools and resources to the men and women of Department of Homeland Security to do the job you’ve asked them to do. [Emphasis added]
Earlier this week, Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) — Trump’s closest populist ally in the Senate — mocked Flake’s “Gang of Six” amnesty plan, saying that the proposal should be thrown “straight into the trash can,” as Breitbart News reported.
Might as well roll it straight into the trash can … mass amnesty far beyond DACA, fake border security, no end to chain migration. https://t.co/pkpCrJxXfa
— Tom Cotton (@TomCottonAR) January 17, 2018
Nothing in return: phantom border security, chain migration visas merely shifted temporarily among categories of relatives, & diversity lottery visas permanently locked in. And don't forget amnesty for 400k TPS recipients! https://t.co/k9vJ8gg5Wo
— Tom Cotton (@TomCottonAR) January 17, 2018
Under Flake’s amnesty plan, the process known as “chain migration,” whereby newly naturalized citizens can bring an unlimited number of foreign relatives to the U.S., would not be ended, and neither would the Diversity Visa Lottery, which randomly gives out 50,000 visas to foreign nationals every year.
Overall, Flake’s amnesty plan would not reduce legal immigration levels in order to relieve America’s working and middle class of the mass immigration burden and raise the wages of American workers.
Department of Homeland Security (DHS) data reveals that more than nine million foreign nationals have come to the U.S. as chain migrants between 2005 and 2016. In that same time period, a total of 13.06 million foreign nationals have entered the U.S. through the legal immigration system, as every seven out of ten new arrivals come to the country for nothing other than family reunification.
— FAIR (@FAIRImmigration) January 17, 2018
This makes chain migration the largest driver of immigration to the U.S. — making up more than 70 percent. As Breitbart News reported, five years of chain migration to the U.S. adds more people to the country than one year of American births.