Politics
Adan Ramirez stands under a portrait of Rufino Contreras during a meeting at the United Farm Workers office in Salinas, Calif. to discuss the Senates passing of the immigration reform bill on Thursday June 27, 2013. Contreras was killed during a labor strike in 1979. (AP Photo/Monterey County Herald, David Royal)

House Judiciary Committee’s immigration recess packet stresses enforcement first

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Caroline May
Political Reporter

The House Judiciary Committee provided Republican members of Congress Wednesday with an immigration packet to help prep lawmakers heading back to their districts over August recess.

“This recess packet has been put together to help you communicate to your constituents the importance of immigration reform and the House Republican plan to produce solutions that actually fix the problems that plague our immigration systems,” Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte wrote in the packet introduction.

The “Immigration Resource Kit,” obtained by The Daily Caller, features four sections, the first three laying out the committee’s goals, starting with strengthening border security and immigration enforcement.

The second section deals with improving legal immigration programs, the third looks at what to do with the illegal immigrants that are currently in the country and the final section offers aid on communicating the message — including 10 talking points on the problems with the Senate immigration bill.

The committee’s packet is heavier on enforcement and legal immigration improvement, citing four Judiciary Committee-approved bills and one House Homeland Security Committee-approved bill to that emphasize those positions. The packet is lighter on what to do with the illegal immigrants already in the country.

“House Republicans are currently discussing a way forward on how to provide legal status to unlawful immigrants living in our country,” the third portion of the packet reads explaining that the diversity of the illegal population could produce different solutions. “For example, while some knowingly broke our immigration laws, others were brought illegally to the U.S. as children by their parents. These children came here through no fault of their own and many of them know no other home than the United States.”

The packet stresses a step-by-step, enforcement first approach and contrasts the House Republican method with the “problematic” Senate bill, which the packet says is “unconstitutional” in the first of 10 talking points about the immigration reform packed.

“While the Senate has passed legislation, the House will continue to work its will by passing our own legislation. That is the American legislative process,” one of the packet communication points asserts. “Immigration reform is not a race; it’s about getting it right.”

Lawmakers will retreat to their respective districts for August recess at the end of this week where they will likely face questions about immigration reform.

Reports indicate that pro-immigration reform activist groups are planning to put the pressure on Republicans to pass immigration reform over the summer recess. Groups that oppose a path to legal status are also expected to make their voices heard.

Immigration Resource Kit by The Daily Caller

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