Exclusive – GOP Rep. Yoder Rejected Jeff Sessions’ Plea to Vote Against Catch-and-Release Plan

AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta

Kansas Rep. Kevin Yoder rejected a personal plea July 25 from Attorney General Jeff Sessions before Yoder voted to revive former President Barack Obama’s catch-and-release policy for economic migrants, sources tell Breitbart News.

Sessions’ telephone plea was delivered during the markup session for the 2019 homeland defense budget, where Yoder – who chairs the House homeland-defense appropriations committee — ensured passage of a Democratic amendment to revive Obama’s catch-and-release policies.

Yoder’s surprise vote and rebuff of Sessions came one day after Yoder flew with President Donald Trump in Air Force One down to a July 24 Kansas rally. Sessions is Trump’s main ally in fighting illegal migration, which is playing a large role in the November midterm elections.

Sessions called multiple legislators on the committee, but all except one of the 30 GOP legislators approved the completed budget plan, which includes the Yoder giveaway plus several additional cheap-labor giveaways. “The Attorney General personally made multiple phone calls to committee members,” said a second source.

Yoder’s office declined to comment. “We don’t have any more to add on this topic,” a spokesman said August 9.

According to the second source, the GOP leadership on the committee did not tell Sessions’ Justice Department or the Department of Homeland Security about the asylum amendment until the day of the vote.

Yoder’s support for the Democrat’s amendment ensured that the 2019 draft appropriations bill now includes a clause which prevents border officers from implementing Sessions’ successful reform of asylum rules.  Amid growing protests, Yoder posted a letter on his Facebook page on July 27:

There have been concerns about amendments that were adopted into our bill regarding asylum. These concerns are legitimate and I am committed to continuing to work with the President and the administration to fix this as our bill moves forward and ensure that any loopholes are closed and that we have strong and humane enforcement of all of our immigration laws.

However, the second source was skeptical, saying August 10 that “it remains unclear at this time [two weeks later] whether Yoder has contacted the [two] Departments to discuss further.”

In the July 25 hearing, North Carolina Democrat David Price urged that “prosecutorial discretion” be used to end the deportation of “non-criminal” illegal migrants. “This has been the policy of past administration, what is going on now is the radical policy,” he said. The administration is “giving those who seek refuge a virtual death sentence … [and is] one of the many heartless steps the Trump administration has taken,” he said.

“Thank you, Mr. Price, for bringing this amendment … For my part, I’ll be voting aye,” Yoder said.

Sessions’ asylum reforms are ending Obama’s policies of granting asylum to people who claim abuse from a spouse or threats from criminals. Those claims have been used by a huge number of Central American economic migrants to move through the border wall and into service jobs and neighborhood schools in blue-collar neighborhoods throughout the United States.

Any revival of the Obama’s catch-and-release would give most of El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras — 32 million Central Americans — the practical ability to migrate to the United States by claiming they are fleeing gangs or domestic violence.

The variety of reforms implemented by Sessions are on track to deliver a “dramatic” reduction in the number of economic migrants who win asylum claims in U.S. immigration courts, says TRAC Reports, Inc., a non-profit based at Syracuse University which collects asylum and immigration-related data.

But the Sessions turnaround from Obama’s asylum rules is an ideological problem for pro-migration Democrats, who favor the large-scale migration of poor, government-boosting migrants into the United States.

The turnaround is also a business problem for business-first Republicans groups. In 2017, 400,000 asylum-seeking migrants got work permits, so reducing labor-market pressure on employers to pay higher wages to Americans.

Yoder’s bill also includes a green-card amendment that opens the door to more outsourcing of college-graduate jobs, amendments to expand the blue-collar H-2A and H-2B visa-worker programs, and an amendment to block detention of migrant families.

Roughly 1.5 million visa-workers already hold U.S.-based college-graduate jobs after getting work-permits via the H-1B, L-1, OPT and J-1 visa-worker programs. Many of those resident Indian visa-workers are funding their own advocacy campaigns — such as Immigration Voice — launched the advocacy campaign which prompted Yoder’s green-card amendment.

The GOP legislators on the panel which voted for the Yoder giveaway are:

  • Rodney P. Frelinghuysen, New Jersey, Chairman
  • Harold Rogers, Kentucky
  • Robert B. Aderholt, Alabama
  • Kay Granger, Texas
  • Michael K. Simpson, Idaho
  • John Abney Culberson, Texas
  • John R. Carter, Texas
  • Ken Calvert, California
  • Tom Cole, Oklahoma
  • Mario Diaz-Balart, Florida
  • Tom Graves, Georgia
  • Kevin Yoder, Kansas
  • Steve Womack, Arkansas
  • Jeff Fortenberry, Nebraska
  • Thomas J. Rooney, Florida
  • Charles J. Fleischmann, Tennessee
  • Jaime Herrera Beutler, Washington
  • David P. Joyce, Ohio
  • David G. Valadao, California
  • Andy Harris, MD, Maryland
  • Martha Roby, Alabama
  • Mark E. Amodei, Nevada
  • Chris Stewart, Utah
  • David Young, Iowa
  • Evan H. Jenkins, West Virginia
  • Steven Palazzo, Mississippi
  • Dan Newhouse, Washington
  • John R. Moolenaar, Michigan
  • Scott Taylor, Virginia
  • John Rutherford, Florida

Four million Americans turn 18 each year and begin looking for good jobs in the free market — but the government provides green cards to roughly 1 million legal immigrants and temporary work-permits to roughly 3 million foreign workers.

The Washington-imposed economic policy of economic growth via immigration shifts wealth from young people towards older people by flooding the market with cheap foreign labor. That process spikes profits and Wall Street values by cutting salaries for manual and skilled labor offered by blue-collar and white-collar employees. The policy also drives up real estate priceswidens wealth-gaps, reduces high-tech investment, increases state and local tax burdens, hurts kids’ schools and college education, pushes Americans away from high-tech careers, and sidelines at least 5 million marginalized Americans and their families, including many who are now struggling with opioid addictions.


John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter at @JxhnBinder.

Follow Neil Munro at @NeilMunroDC






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