Barletta: Immigration proposal off target
U.S. Rep. Lou Barletta, R-11, released the following statement in response to Tuesday's Senate "Gang of 8" immigration proposal:
"Today's proposal in the Senate does not address the underlying causes of illegal immigration in our country. Fixing our immigration system without meaningful requirements to secure our borders is like replacing the carpet while the roof is still leaking. I believe we need to first secure our borders, enforce employer verification rules, stop fraudulent documentation, and deport criminal aliens.
"The proposal announced today would provide amnesty for over 10 million illegal immigrants living in the United States. The financial impact of amnesty will be disastrous for our struggling economy and massive entitlement debt. As new citizens, millions will be on the path to eligibility for public benefits. A Heritage Foundation report indicates that granting amnesty to the illegal immigrant population would cost over $2.6 trillion dollars. If we are serious about balancing our budget in 10 years, we cannot afford amnesty.
"My greatest fear is that the lessons of 1986 are being ignored. In the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986, Congress granted amnesty with the promise of enforcement. Enforcement never came, and as a result we have the immigration crisis that exists today. I am unconvinced that we are prepared to get enforcement right this time."