The following statement was released in reaction to Monday’s illegal immigration rallies.
Several years ago, when I visited Juan Hernandez, the former Minister for Mexicans Living in the United States, he told me that the more Mexicans living in the U.S. — both legally and illegally — the more our government would be influenced on behalf of Mexico. Illegal immigration serves both Mexico’s political and economic interests.
Today’s rallies show how entrenched the illegal alien lobby has become over the last several years. The iron triangle of illegal employers, foreign governments and groups like La Raza puts tremendous pressure on our elected officials to violate the desires of law-abiding Americans and to grant amnesty. But as nearly every recent poll shows, Americans want secure borders — not amnesty — and sooner or later they’ll elect representatives who will listen to their constituents.
The illegal alien lobby has upgraded its PR, instructing protestors to trade in their foreign flags for red, white and blue. But make no mistake about it: amnesty is an affront to American law and America’s tradition of legal immigration. If the protestors really want to honor America’s values, they would stand up to lawbreakers and embrace an enforcement-first approach to fixing our broken system.
Protestors tried to demonize those who want secure borders because it’s easier to hide behind nasty names and half truths than to articulate a position. It is not true that the House reform bill was intended to make felons of illegal aliens — Democrats inserted that provision as a poison pill. It is not true that we want to criminalize priests or hospitals that help illegal aliens — the House bill doesn’t substantially change the law that has been on the books for 20 years. The House bill does secure our borders and crack down on illegal employers and it refuses amnesty. Demonizing well-meaning Americans doesn’t play well in the heartland, and it’s not helpful to Congress as we grapple with this difficult issue.