Reps. Andy Biggs and Brian Babin on Friday called on congressional leaders to exclude amnesty for illegal immigrants from the $3.5 trillion package of social welfare programs that Democrats plan to pass in a party-line vote.
The two Republicans, who are co-chairs, of the House Border Security Caucus, raised their concerns in a letter to Senate and House leaders.
“We are in the midst of a national security and humanitarian crisis at our southern border; mass amnesty will exacerbate the devastation and chaos,” wrote Messrs. Biggs of Arizona and Babin of Texas.
The Washington Times reviewed a copy of the letter, which was addressed to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, Senate Majority Leader Charles E. Schumer and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.
They warned that granting illegal immigrants a pathway to citizenship will act as an incentive for people to engage in more unlawful activities.
“This is what separates us from the banana republics that others want to flee,” the members wrote. “Granting amnesty to those who have broken the law and putting them on a path to citizenship is unfair, will encourage more illegal activity, and will impose significant challenges for hurting American families.”
Republicans have rallied against the left’s push to include immigration reform in the $3.5 trillion bill that Senate Democrats are currently assembling
Democrats have proposed to include a pathway to citizenship for “Dreamers” who entered the country illegally as children and then grew up in the U.S., as well as those who have Temporary Protected Status or are considered essential workers.
Some of the Dreamers were protected from deportation under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals or DACA. A federal judge recently halted DACA, ruling that the Obama administration cut too many corners when creating the program.
The proposal under consideration for the partisan $3.5 billion social welfare package would potentially create a path to citizenship for millions of people who are currently in the country illegally.
Democrats plan to ram the bill through using a budget process called reconciliation that would sidestep the need for Republican support and allow it to pass in a party-line vote.
The White House affirmed its support for immigration reform in the bill this week after meeting with Democratic lawmakers to discuss the DACA program.