Unfortunately the race to out-amnesty one another just got a new contender as President Obama announced his support for an even more wide-reaching amnesty.
WHAT IS ANNOUNCED IN VEGAS SHOULD STAY IN VEGAS
It appears President Obama is ready to play Amnesty Roulette and he's betting on a bigger amnesty than the Gang of Eight's. President Obama, in front of a supportive audience in Las Vegas that cheered wildly throughout his speech, just announced his vision of Amnesty 2.0.
Please call President Obama and tell him to stop gambling with our immigration laws. Due to the late nature of the President's speech, some of you may not see this alert until the White House comment line has closed. If so, please call on Wednesday.
WHITE HOUSE COMMENT LINE: 202-456-1111
I know some of you may feel that it's not even worth your time to phone the White House on this issue, but every voice of opposition to the amnesty puts one small stumbling block in its way. While we may never change the minds of some elected officials, you have proven in the past that you can build a wall of opposition they aren't willing to risk climbing over.
As all-encompassing as the Gang of Eight amnesty proposal is, President Obama's proposal goes even further. Most noticeably different than the Gang of Eight's proposal is that President Obama's proposal includes virtually no enforcement measures. There was no mention of mandating E-verify, no mention of border security, and no mention of completing an entry/exit program.
He did, however, say that there had to be a clearly defined "path to citizenship" for the nation's 11 million illegal aliens, and he called for massive increases in legal immigration numbers.
Thank you! Because thousands of you answered our call (for calls!) yesterday, our Capitol Hill team heard from many Congressional offices that the phones were ringing off the hook in opposition to Amnesty 2.0. Your voice was so important in countering the ebullient media's anointment of the Gang of Eight amnesty plan because it provided Members of Congress with the initial feedback they needed to hear that their constituents oppose amnesty. Already your calls are encouraging some Members to distance themselves from any amnesty proposal.
If you didn't have a chance to call, it is not too late. Our focus this week is to have the phones ringing off the hook in opposition to amnesty.
SIGNS OF HOPE EMERGE
CONGRESSIONAL VOICES AGAINST AMNESTY
Thanks in good measure to your hard work, it didn't take long yesterday for voices of reason on Amnesty 2.0 to begin to emerge from Capitol Hill.
As soon as we learn that a Member has spoken out against the amnesty, we are posting opportunities for constituents to thank the Member. (Please let us know if you believe we have missed one).
Among yesterday's champions in standing against the amnesty were:
- Senator Mitch McConnell (R-KY), Senate Minority Leader
- Senator Jeff Sessions (R-AL)
- Senator Mike Lee (R-UT) -- see below
- Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX)
- Senator David Vitter (R-LA)
- Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX)
- Rep. Steve King (R-IA)
- Rep. Peter King (R-NY)
It is so important that these Members receive positive feedback when they speak (Tweet, write, etc) against amnesty because it provides them incredible support and, often encourages other Members to do the same. Be sure to check your Action Board for special messages you can send to your Member when if they come out against Amnesty 2.0.
One note of clarification about Senator Mike Lee of Utah. Although he was initially part of the Senate Gang of Eight, he refused to endorse their final amnesty plan yesterday. He deserves special attention from our Utah activists as it was surely not easy to publicly oppose the proposal he had an opportunity to craft over the past several weeks.
2007 Amnesty Redux
As most of you heard yesterday, the Obama-Rubio immigration proposal is effectively an updated version of the 2007 defeated amnesty plan. Even Senator McCain stated this when endorsing the proposal. For a comparison of the 2013 amnesty with the 2007 amnesty, you might be interested in this chart that appeared in today's Washington Times.
CHANGING THE STORYLINE
In addition to staying on top of the situation on the Hill, Rosemary spent much of her day yesterday (and most of the day today) talking to various reporters and talk radio hosts about Amnesty 2.0. Slowly we are beginning to see the storyline change as other voices (including many from CIS and FAIR and others) are being included in coverage of the Amnesty to offer countering viewpoints.
Here is a synopsis of what Rosemary has been telling various media throughout the day yesterday and today:
In the race to out-amnesty Obama, the Gang of Eight today rehashed the failed amnesty plan from six years ago. If the Senate were serious about reforming our failed immigration system, the first step of their plan would be immediate, mandatory use of E-verify - the workplace enforcement measure that ensures jobs are only given to U.S. citizens and those WHO are here legally. Instead, the Senate gang's proposal is 'Amnesty 2.0' - meaningless enforcement measures, mass amnesty, and increased in legal immigration, with taxpayers left to foot the bill.
Thank you for all you are doing to stop this amnesty. Your voice is not only important on Capitol Hill, but also in our office. Those of us at NumbersUSA are so heartened by your civic activism that it gives us motivation to keep at it. Together, we can stop this.
ANNE MANETAS is the Deputy Director of NumbersUSA