I warned you about this last May when Tea-Publican leaders were blowing smoke that they would consider immigration reform, but never had any good faith intentions of ever doing so. The GOP is ‘the party of maximum deportations’.
Lost in the Friday news dump and the media’s fixation with events in Paris comes this report, in which the GOP leadership is letting the nativist and racist Tea-Publicans led by Rep. Steve King (R-IA) dictate its immigration policy in the 114th Congress, just as they did last August by adopting the “deport them all” bill of Rep.s Steve King and Michele Bachmann. Expansive House G.O.P. Immigration Bill Undercuts the President:
House Republicans introduced legislation Friday that would roll back President Obama’s executive actions on immigration, undoing a provision that would allow five million undocumented immigrants to remain in the country and one that protects young people brought to the United States illegally by a parent [i.e., the DACA program for the DREAMers.]
The Republican plan, an effort to appease their more conservative members, would still finance most of the Department of Homeland Security.
The core of the bill provides $39.7 billion for Homeland Security, a $400 million increase from the previous fiscal year. House Republicans plan to offer an amendment to the legislation that will prevent any money — both under the appropriations process and through any fees collected from immigration applications — from being used for any of the president’s existing or future executive actions on immigration.
The plan Republicans ultimately supported, after a week of private meetings and behind-the-scenes discussions, is far more expansive than what the House leadership team anticipated.
The repeal of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which under Mr. Obama’s 2012 order protected the young immigrants who call themselves Dreamers, could prove particularly contentious; roughly a dozen Republicans in a closed-door meeting Friday objected to such an approach. The bill is unlikely to pass the Senate. The president has also threatened to veto the legislation that undoes his executive action on immigration.
The vote served as a signal of how far House Republicans, emboldened by their midterm election victory, would go to confront Mr. Obama. It is a move that carries peril because the provision related to the Dreamers had broad appeal in the Latino community, an increasingly influential voting bloc.
Representative Matt Salmon, Republican of Arizona, said that the most conservative members supported the plan and that a handful of the more moderate members expressed concern.
“I think the direct phraseology was, ‘We were hoping it would be more of a rifle shot. This is more expansive,’ ” Mr. Salmon said. But, he added, “This is as close to one hundred percent as we’ve ever gotten on a tough issue like this.”
The Republican plan also would rein in several 2011 memos by the administration — known as the Morton memos — that significantly expanded what immigration authorities could consider when deciding to defer or cancel deportations.
And it would increase funds for the federal Secure Communities program. Under that program, fingerprints of every individual booked by the police were checked against Homeland Security databases, leading immigration authorities to initiate many deportations. The program faced growing resistance from immigrant advocates and states and was canceled by the president.
The House expects to vote on the bill next Tuesday or Wednesday, before congressional Republicans head out of town for a retreat in Hershey, Pa.
Frank Sharry, the executive director of America’s Voice, an immigration advocacy organization, criticized the House Republican leadership for allowing itself to be swayed by the conference’s most conservative members. He warned that the new proposal could alienate Hispanic voters in the 2016 presidential election.
“It is outrageous and it is noteworthy that the House leadership has embraced the most extreme proposals from the most extreme members of their caucus,” Mr. Sharry said. “It is nothing short of breathtaking that this is their first move coming out of the box in 2015 when they get the reins of power.”
Lawrence Downes of the New York Times gets it exactly right: Behold the Republican Immigration Strategy: Mass Deportation:
It’s a new year, with a new Congress, but the same old Republican Party hard line on immigration. Harder, actually.
The New York Times and Politico are reporting that the House is getting ready to vote next week on a legislative package that would repeal the broad executive actions taken by President Obama to protect immigrants from deportation. The idea is to gut the president’s ability to use discretion in deciding whom to deport, and to restore the enforcement dragnet that Mr. Obama and the Homeland Security Department recently, and wisely, curtailed.
The G.O.P. is not just seeking to undo the executive actions Mr. Obama announced last November, for young immigrants known as Dreamers and many of their parents. The party also wants to repeal earlier actions going back to 2012, protecting hundreds of thousands of Dreamers and the families of active-duty service members.
That is a lot of people to force back into the deportation line.
What’s striking about this early Republican move is that it is not just stray artillery fire from the party’s wingnut brigade, led by Representative Steve King of Iowa, but a product of the House leadership.
So much for the G.O.P. not being the scary party. This counts as a definite screw-you to immigrants from the party that keeps saying it wants to moderate its stance toward new Americans, and thus broaden its appeal beyond angry white people, but can never bring itself to do so.
Immigration-reform advocates pounced at the news on Friday. On a conference call for reporters on Friday afternoon, Lorella Praeli of the group United We Dream said this was a direct assault by the G.O.P. on 600,000 people who have already received protection from deportation under the program called DACA, and on their families.
“We will fight you in the courts, in the streets, at home and on Capitol Hill,” she said.
She and others noted that this effort — which seems destined to die in the Senate, or be vetoed by Mr. Obama — has nothing to with fixing the immigration problem, but will simply reinforce the lawless status quo.
“Only three words describe the Republican approach to immigrants: deportation, deportation, deportation,” said Representative Luis Gutiérrez, Democrat of Illinois, in a statement on Friday. “The ‘deport them all’ contingent in the Republican Party has the pen and the gavel in the House. I know the Republicans will stop at nothing, but I didn’t think they would start with everything.”
Tea-Publicans are still in thrall to post-policy nihilism. Everything they do is about picking confrontations with that Black man in the White House to appease the nativist and racist base of the GOP and to feed the voracious conservative media entertainment complex. They are incapable of genuine, serious public policy that addresses long-standing needs and of governing responsibly, because they fundamentally do not believe in government and that, therefore, government is not capable of addressing problems.
This was best captured by P.J. O’ Rourke who said “Republicans are the party that says government doesn’t work, and then they get elected and prove it.”