WASHINGTON, Jan. 28, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Senate Democrats are demanding that Majority Leader Mitch McConnell abandon his pledge to block funding for President Obama's unlegislated illegal alien amnesty program in the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Appropriations bill. In a letter to McConnell, Democrats are urging that House language defunding the president's amnesty proposal be stripped, and that the Senate approve a "clean" spending bill.
"What the Senate minority is demanding is the antithesis of a 'clean' DHS Appropriations bill, and McConnell must not capitulate," said Dan Stein, president of the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR). "What the Democrats are seeking is a dirty bill that actually funds the President's executive amnesty. It allows the administration to divert money and manpower from the department's primary responsibilities – securing the homeland and enforcing our immigration laws – to carrying out a massive amnesty program that was never authorized by Congress."
Citing "recent events in Paris, Ottawa and Australia" and explicit warnings about potential attacks in the U.S., the letter argues that, "We should not play politics with critical homeland security resources that keep our country safe."
"It is Senate Democrats and the president who are playing a very dangerous game of politics with DHS funding," responded Stein. "If the Democratic minority in the Senate and a presidential veto threat stand in the way of completing the appropriation process, it is they who will have to explain to the American people why they are holding certain DHS operations hostage to their political goal of granting amnesty and work authorization to millions of illegal aliens."
Under the plan announced by President Obama in November, and accompanying memos issued by Sec. Jeh Johnson, some 5 million illegal aliens would be eligible for amnesty and work authorization, while immigration enforcement would be halted against nearly all other illegal aliens in the U.S. "These actions would represent a wholesale abdication of immigration enforcement and would pose a far greater danger to homeland security than a temporary interruption in DHS's non-essential functions," said Stein.
"Nobody wants to see any functions of DHS interrupted by a partial shutdown. But the alternative is to allow the president to use the department's fiscal and human resources to carry out his political agenda, when every dollar and every worker should be focused on keeping the nation safe," Stein said.
At least seven members of the Senate Democratic caucus, Jon Tester (Mont.), Claire McCaskill (Mo.), Mark Warner (Va.), Joe Manchin (W.V.), Joe Donnelly (Ind.), Heidi Heitkamp (N.D.,) and Angus King (Me.), are on record opposing the president's unconstitutional assertion of executive authority to grant amnesty and work authorization to some 5 million illegal aliens. "Majority Leader McConnell's focus should be on persuading these Democrats to join with Republicans to pass a bipartisan bill that ensures that DHS funds are spent on the vital task of securing the homeland, while protecting the Constitution's Separation of Powers doctrine.
"The House has sent the Senate a 'clean' bill that removes president's political agenda from the appropriations process. The majority leader must insist that it remains so in the Senate," Stein concluded.
Founded in 1979, FAIR is the country's largest immigration reform group. With over 250,000 members nationwide, FAIR fights for immigration policies that serve national interests, not special interests. FAIR believes that immigration reform must enhance national security, improve the economy, protect jobs, preserve our environment, and establish a rule of law that is recognized and enforced.