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Posted by Randy | March 11, 2015
Wanted to loop you in on two very important bills I’ve been working on with the Judiciary Committee this past week:

The first is an updated version of Congressman Gowdy’s SAFE Act (which I emailed you about earlier this year). This bill (H.R. 1148) removes the ability of the President to unilaterally shut down immigration enforcement, and strengthens the interior enforcement of our immigration laws by allowing state and local governments to enforce federal immigration law.

The second bill is the Legal Workforce Act (H.R. 1147), which preserves jobs for legal workers by requiring U.S. employers to check the work eligibility of all future hires through the E-Verify system.

Both of these bills are positive action steps towards securing our borders, enforcing our current immigration laws, reducing illegal immigration, and saving jobs for legal workers. I’ll keep you posted as they move through the House process.
Posted by Randy | December 10, 2014
Wanted to let you know that I just cosponsored a new anti-amnesty amendment to prevent funding to implement the Administration’s executive amnesty.  The amendment was filed with the House Rules Committee this morning, as they meet to discuss the spending bill for the federal government. 

It is crucial that Congress uses all tools available to rein in the President’s overreach, and uphold the rule of law. Giving the power of the purse to Congress was not an accident, and it is time the Administration understands that adhering to the Constitution is not optional.

Read more about my ongoing fight to oppose amnesty, secure the border, and enforce our current laws, here >>>

Posted by Randy | December 03, 2014

Tomorrow, the House is expected to vote on the Executive Amnesty Prevention Act (H.R. 5759). This bill, which I am supporting, affirms that, except within strict constitutional limits, the President does not have the authority to exempt whole categories of persons unlawfully present in the U.S. from removal, or defer from removal, from this country. Any executive action to the contrary is a violation of the law and thus has no legal effect.

I also wanted to be sure you saw the Op-Ed that House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte published today on why President Obama’s immigration power grab poses a danger to America. Weigh in with your thoughts on my blog.

December 3, 2014

Obama's immigration power grab a danger to America

By Rep. Bob Goodlatte

President Obama recently declared from the White House that he is effectively rewriting our immigration laws on his own terms. Under his sweeping executive edicts, President Obama has proclaimed that five million unlawful immigrants can live and work here legally, redefined who is a priority for immigration enforcement, and gutted the interior enforcement of our immigration laws. These unilateral actions have created an untold number of consequences, affecting our Republic, the American people, legal immigrants, and the integrity of our immigration system.

President Obama’s decision to recklessly forge ahead with a plan to unilaterally change our immigration laws creates a constitutional crisis.

The Constitution clearly states that it’s Congress’ job to write our laws and the President’s duty to enforce them. Moreover, the Constitution says that “the Congress shall have the Power to … establish a uniform Rule of Naturalization.”

By allowing five million unlawful immigrants to live and work here through executive action, President Obama ignores the limitations placed on his authority and claims legislative power for himself. These actions threaten to unravel our government’s system of checks and balances and imperil individual liberty.

Many of the president’s actions needlessly endanger our communities. President Obama claims he is taking executive action to prioritize immigration enforcement to focus on criminal aliens, yet the loopholes contained in the Obama administration’s new enforcement priority guidelines ensure that no one is actually a guaranteed priority for removal.

Due to the ambiguous and unworkable language in the administration’s guidelines, criminal aliens such as terrorists, gang members, drug traffickers, drunk drivers, sexual abusers, and other felons could stay here if there are “compelling or exceptional factors” – or in some instances, simply “factors” – warranting their release.

And the recklessness doesn’t just end there. President Obama has scrapped a congressionally-mandated tool that identifies criminal aliens booked in jails across the United States so that federal law enforcement officials can prioritize their removal.

Secure Communities, created in 2008, is a simple and successful program to identify criminal aliens once arrested and jailed. It protects Americans from public safety threats and those who could be a danger to their communities. Instead of continuing to utilize this successful existing system that is required and appropriated by Congress, the Obama administration will implement a new, untested program called the “Priorities Enforcement Program.”

Under the new screening program, the Obama administration ignores some of its own enforcement priorities for the purposes of processing aliens for removal and turns a blind eye to most unlawful immigrants booked in jails across the United States. Additionally, the Obama administration permits sanctuary city policies by effectively leaving states and localities with the choice of whether or not to comply with the federal government’s requests for notification about criminal aliens booked in their jails.

President Obama’s new legalization program for unlawful immigrants also unfairly punishes legal immigrants playing by the rules and seeking to come to the U.S. the right way.

As U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services shifts attention and resources to the processing of applications for unlawful immigrants, legal immigrants will face longer wait times for their petitions to be processed. This was true under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which has allowed over 600,000 unlawful immigrants to stay here so far.

With over five million unlawful immigrants standing to benefit from President Obama’s new executive decree, legal immigrants will only face longer wait times, even though they’ve already paid the fees to have their applications processed.

Furthermore, President Obama’s actions open the floodgates to another wave of illegal immigration.

In the past, our nation has witnessed the surge in illegal immigration that comes when amnesty is promised and the enforcement of our immigration laws is ignored. This was true after the 1986 immigration overhaul and the implementation of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program in the summer of 2012, which encouraged hundreds of thousands of unaccompanied minors, family units, and adults to flood our borders.

Ironically, although President Obama has stated in the past that these individuals will be sent home, under his new enforcement priorities, if they came here before January 1, 2014 – which many of them did – they will likely be able to stay.

Additionally, since the Obama administration has not deemed immigration-related crimes a priority for enforcement – such as identity theft, document fraud, and refusing to comply with removal orders – this sends the message that breaking our immigration laws and committing crimes that often follow illegal entry are permissible. Collectively, the president’s actions undermine the integrity of our immigration system.

I, and many other members of Congress, want to reform our nation’s immigration system. But the president’s decision to act on his own and ignore the enforcement of our immigration laws is not the right way to do it.

These unilateral immigration actions are a danger to our Constitution, communities, and immigration system and must be stopped.

The House Judiciary Committee, which has primary jurisdiction over our nation’s immigration laws, will fight President Obama’s unconstitutional actions and will shine light on and correct the Obama administration’s anti-enforcement policies.

Republican Bob Goodlatte represents Virginia's 6th congressional district in the House of Representatives. He is chairman of the House Judiciary Committee.


Posted by Randy | November 25, 2014
I’m sure by now you have heard the Administration’s justification for executive action on immigration: that Presidents Bush, Reagan, and “every president in the last 70 years” have acted unilaterally to address the immigration system.

We could spend our time pointing out key differences between past presidents' actions on immigration, and the current Administration’s sweeping executive order, which will impact roughly 5 million people who are illegally in this country.

But instead, I would like to focus on a different reason this is not justification for unconstitutional action. And that is because this is not about politics. It’s not about one person. It’s not about one party. If a Republican president issued the same executive order, it would be just as wrong. This is about principles. Our nation was founded on the fundamental premise that the law is the ultimate authority – not the preferences of elected officials, the will of an elite minority, or the whims of an executive. This respect for the rule of law is what has defined our country since the day the words, “We the People… “ were scrawled in ink on parchment, and the Constitution of the United States of America was birthed as the Supreme Law of the Land and a testament to freedom, justice, and equality under the law.

Our heritage is a nation of immigrants. But let us not forget our heritage is also a nation founded upon the integrity of the rule of law. The Constitution doesn’t play favorites, and it has no respect for partisan politics. The law is the law. It must be respected.

As a senior member of the House Judiciary Committee, I am working with Chairman Goodlatte and the other Committee Members to use every tool at the Committee’s disposal to fight against this executive overreach. Keep updated on our fight by connecting with me on facebook or visiting my website.

Posted by Randy | November 20, 2014
For me, no amnesty means no amnesty. Broad amnesty. Narrow amnesty. It doesn't matter. Entry into this country is a privilege, not a right.

For the Administration to act unilaterally to change our immigration laws is a blatant disregard of the separation of powers as laid out in the Constitution. I have strongly urged the President not to proceed with granting executive amnesty to millions of people who are in this country illegally, and not to diminish our institutions, our Constitution, and our nation’s foundation built on the rule of law. The integrity of the law, and more importantly, the integrity of our government, demand nothing less.

Amnesty won’t fix what is broken. An executive order granting amnesty to millions of illegal immigrants not only undermines our current immigration policy, but also perpetuates the problem by encouraging more illegal immigration. That’s why I have, and will continue to, strongly oppose amnesty of any form. I have also:
  • Opposed the release of criminal illegal immigrants;
  • Demanded deportation of illegal immigrant gang members;
  • Opposed the Administration’s actions to selectively enforce our laws and defer deportation;
  • Strongly support securing the border as our first priority;
  • Opposed the closure of border patrol stations;
  • Supported legislation to verify employment;
  • Demanded answers from the President about the taxpayer dollars being spent to house, feed, and transport the unaccompanied minors crossing our border;
  • Voted to prohibit federal funds or resources to authorize deferred action for any class of illegal immigrants moving forward, and prevent federal funding or resources from being used to authorize work permits for immigrants not lawfully present in the United States.          

I will continue to be unrelenting in my demand that the Administration enforce the laws of this nation as the Constitution requires them to do. As a senior member of the House Judiciary Committee, I will continue to fight to support the rule of law and uphold Congress’ duty to hold the executive branch accountable for its actions.

Weigh below -- I want you to be a part of this conversation.

Posted by Randy | November 20, 2014

I can sum up President Obama’s executive action on immigration in two words: Staggering. Arrogance.

This is not a dispute between the Administration and Republicans, this is between the Administration and the Constitution of the United States. The House Judiciary Committee is prepared to use every tool at its disposal to fight the President’s planned executive amnesty. I strongly support Chairman Goodlatte’s leadership in this fight.

To learn more, watch my discussion with Lou Dobbs on Fox Business last night, here, or by clicking the image below.

For me, no amnesty means no amnesty. I have long opposed, and will continue to oppose, amnesty of any form. Learn more about my work, here.
Posted by Randy | October 27, 2014
The Administration announced the My E-Verify program to allow individuals to lock their Social Security numbers to prevent unauthorized or fraudulent use. The program is available in five states - Arizona, Idaho, Colorado, Mississippi, Virginia - as well as the District of Columbia, and will soon be used throughout the rest of the country.

While this program is an important improvement, there is much left to be done -- not only protect the personal information of American citizens and prevent theft and fraud, but also to verify the eligibility of those working in this country.

That’s why I supported the Legal Workforce Act, H.R.1772, to improve the E-verify system and make it mandatory for all U.S. employers to quickly, accurately, and easily ensure they are hiring workers legally.

For me, no amnesty means no amnesty. Our immigration policy must reflect our core belief that entry into the United States is not a right, but a privilege. The government must ensure the safety and security of our nation’s borders. This cannot be done if we do not identify and monitor the constant flow of illegal immigrants into our country.
Posted by Randy | October 09, 2014
I wanted to share this article with you. The Associated Press is reporting that the Homeland Security Department privately acknowledged roughly 70% of immigrant families who are caught illegally crossing the Mexican border and released into the United States with instructions to report back to immigration authorities have failed to report back to federal immigration agents.

This shouldn’t come as a surprise. It is a direct consequence of the Administration’s failure to enforce our current immigration laws, and of prioritizing talks of amnesty over border security. My position remains clear: No amnesty. Period. You can learn more about my work opposing amnesty of any form, here.

Recently, the Department of Defense announced that illegal immigrants who have been granted deferral from deportation and also possess certain skills (like language expertise) will now be eligible to join the military. Do you support allowing select illegal immigrants to enlist in the military? Weigh in on our weekly poll, here.
Posted by Randy | October 03, 2014
Last week, the Department of Defense announced that illegal immigrants who have been granted deferral from deportation and also possess certain skills, like language expertise, will now be eligible to join the military.  In 2012, the Obama Administration first announced plans to grant temporary deferral from deportation to young people brought into the U.S. illegally by their parents, if they met certain criteria.  Since April of this year, over 560,000 individuals have received deferred action from deportation under this program.

This announcement from the Defense Department to enlist illegal immigrants comes at a time when our military faces drastic cuts –  the Army and Marine Corps will lose 100,000 and 33,000 personnel, respectively, while the Air Force plans to cut roughly 17,000 airmen in just the next year, the Navy has already cut 1,800 reservists – reducing our forces to pre-World War II levels.

Congressman Forbes believes the Administration must stop prioritizing amnesty over the security of our borders and over our men and women in uniform.  Read more about Congressman Forbes’ work opposing amnesty here.

Question of the weekDo you support allowing select illegal immigrants to enlist in the military?

( ) Yes.
( ) No.
( ) I don’t know.
( ) Other.

Take the Poll here.

Find the results of last week’s InstaPoll here.
Posted by Randy | August 05, 2014

Every day that passes, more unaccompanied minors and illegal immigrants are flooding across our southern border. Let me cut to the chase – the crisis on our border is a direct result of prioritizing talks of amnesty over securing our border. The more politicians in Washington entertain the idea of amnesty, the more enticing crossing our border becomes.

It’s time for action. We must:  

1.     End the conversation on amnesty.
2.     Secure the border.
3.     Enforce our current laws. 

You and I both know: Securing our border involves not just the ability to enforce our laws, but the will to enforce our laws.  I believe that this Administration has failed to demonstrate that it will enforce our laws. I will continue to hold their feet to the fire and to be unrelenting in our demand that they enforce the laws of this nation, as the Constitution requires them to do.   

If you’d like to stay up to date on my fight to secure our border and hold the Administration accountable, sign up for my immigration email updates

If you're not up-to-speed, here are some of the specifics of what I'm working on: opposing the release of criminal illegal immigrants, demanding deportation of illegal immigrant gang members, and opposing the Administration’s actions to selectively enforce our laws and defer deportation. I strongly support securing the border as our first priority, and I have opposed the closure of border patrol stations.  I believe we must empower states to protect citizens and combat illegal immigration, and I have supported legislation to verify employment. To stay updated on these bills, sign up here.