House GOP leader Kevin McCarthy told Breitbart News exclusively on Wednesday morning that Democrat President-elect Joe Biden should drop his push to grant amnesty to every illegal alien in America and instead focus his incoming administration on getting Americans back to work with millions still reeling from the coronavirus pandemic.
Biden, who will be sworn in as president on Wednesday at noon, is intending to roll out an amnesty plan on his first day and press Congress to grant the prize of American citizenship to the tens of millions of illegal aliens present in the country.
The fact Biden is beginning his administration with a focus on amnesty, rather than on the American worker who is struggling amid the pandemic, is already splitting and further dividing the country, rallying Republicans against the radical plan.
In his statement to Breitbart News, McCarthy lit into Biden’s amnesty plan saying it would “undermine our rule of law and encourage more illegal immigration,” all while hurting employment prospects for Americans hurting during the pandemic. He said:
The coronavirus and government-imposed lockdowns have left millions of Americans unemployed and small businesses shut down. Our immediate national priority must be to help Americans get back to work. Instead, the first legislative priority we get from the new administration is not one aimed at lowering unemployment for Americans or reopening our economy, but a radical immigration bill granting citizenship to millions of illegal aliens.
Not only does it undermine our rule of law and encourage more illegal immigration, it tells our fellow Americans their misfortune isn’t our nation’s top priority. Will this proposal help Americans get back to work? Most certainly not. And until that happens, the Biden Administration must focus on helping our own citizens first.
McCarthy, the Minority Leader of the House, leads an emboldened House GOP minority that has significantly higher numbers of members than before the 2020 election. Republicans picked up a dozen or so net gains in the 2020 congressional elections, significantly weakening the Democrat majority and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
Those GOP gains in the 2020 elections mean that if only a handful of Democrats in the House do not end up supporting a major piece of legislation–like amnesty–it could easily fail in the chamber.
While Democrat unity is in question, Republicans are particularly unified beginning 2021.
McCarthy was the first Republican leader in years to have the entire GOP conference unanimously behind him in the speakership vote at the beginning of the Congress. Issuing this statement off the bat on Inauguration Day for Biden is a signal from McCarthy and the House GOP that amnesty is a non-starter among House Republicans, and they will not play ball on this issue.
McCarthy’s statement comes after former 2013 Gang of Eight Senate member Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) issued a similar statement drawing a line in the sand over in that chamber against amnesty as Biden takes office. The Senate is currently split 50-50 between Democrats and Republicans.
Despite the fact Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, when she is sworn in later on Wednesday, will cut the tie and hand the majority in the chamber to the Democrats, that tight margin will make it similarly difficult for the Biden-Harris team to get their agenda through the Senate as well.
The strong GOP unity against amnesty off the bat seems to dim establishment hopes for a big bipartisan immigration bill in the Biden Administration’s early days, and put a damper on the incoming president’s initial legislative push.
That means barring the Biden team finding a few random Republican votes here or there on either side of Capitol Hill, they would most likely need to jam an amnesty through Congress on purely partisan lines—which is no foregone conclusion they would even be able to accomplish that given the tight margins in both chambers of Congress.