One such amendment, put forth by Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL), would restrict the legal flow of future low-skilled immigrants to the country because of Sessions’ concern that they would depress wages and threaten employment for U.S. citizens. Conservative firebrand and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, who staunchly opposes the immigration bill and often characterizes it as amnesty, spoke up in opposition to the measure.
“I intend to vote no on this amendment,” Cruz said. “The reason is I think legal immigration is a fundamental pillar of our country. I regret this committee voted last week down each of the amendments that would have put real teeth in the border security provisions and would have made the — what have gone a long way to making the borders secure. I am an advocate of legal immigration.”
He added: “I have two amendments to expand the levels of legal immigration, to make this system work better which has the added benefit of — as a nation, we need to remain a nation that celebrates legal immigrants around this table — so many of us are the children of those who risked everything for freedom. I respect my friend from alabama’s amendment but is not one that I can support.”
I think Cruz made the right call on this one. While I understand the arguments of those who seek to better ensure the legal immigrants we get are self-sufficient, and there is merit to that concern, I believe there are more important things to concentrate on which will guarantee that–and more.
- Secure the border–first, last, and always, period
- Enforce our immigration laws, including the deportation of violators
- Increase staffing for the legal immigration process and streamline the process as much as national security will allow for
- End the welfare state and return the federal government to its constitutional limits
Low-skilled workers want a piece of the American dream just as much as high-skilled workers, and our economy needs both low skill and high skill workers. Give everybody an equal shot at it, and ensure nobody cheats or cuts to the head of the line, and provide legal immigrants with opportunity, not handouts.
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