Insisting that border security remain a separate issue from immigration reform, McClintock added, “Until the government demonstrates a willingness to enforce the existing immigration law, I do not believe that it has any intention of enforcing stricter laws in the future.”
And if the House follows the Senate immigration bill’s pathway towards amnesty, he bluntly stated, “We’ll never secure the border.”
McClintock also criticized the Senate for giving illegal immigrants the impression that “if we just get there [the U.S.], we’re going to be eventually made legal.”
Rep. Raul Labrador (R-Idaho) agreed that without border security, the Senate bill fixes nothing and is “not worth doing.” But he harshly criticized Rep. Steve King’s (R-Iowa) controversial statements about the potential legalization of drug mules.
In an interview with Newsmax, King said that “for everyone who's a valedictorian, there's another 100 out there who weigh 130 pounds — and they've got calves the size of cantaloupes because they're hauling 75 pounds of marijuana across the desert. Those people would be legalized with the same act."
“Shame on him,” Labrador said. “Shame on the media for only concentrating on that aspect of it.”
Rep. Steve Pearce (R-N.M.) noted that chain migration, in which family members are allowed to join legalized immigrants in the U.S., would increase the total number of immigrants eligible for legalization far beyond the currently estimated figure of 11 million and place an unprecedented burden on border communities, including his own district. “A pathway to citizenship is not the only answer,” he said.
Republican House members are considering an alternative to the DREAM Act that would provide illegal immigrants who entered the U.S. as children options toward legalization.
Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) and Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-Va) are leading this initiative, but are being met with resistance by DREAM Act activists who do not support any legislation that does not include a way for illegal adult immigrants to achieve U.S. citizenship.
Rep. David Schweikert (R-Ariz.) criticized the “lack of press coverage over the last couple days of the reaction from the immigration activists” whom he said were “willing to throw the DREAMers under the bus because they had used them, exploited them for so long for their immigration agenda.”
“Where’s the discussion, where’s the analysis in your articles saying oh, by the way, now we’re finding out what the real agendas are?” Schweikert challenged reporters.