Texas Republican Senator Ted Cruz accused President Obama and Democratic Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of holding for “ransom” the tens of thousands of illegal immigrant children at the border, claiming they are using their plight to push amnesty and their plan for immigration reform.
Cruz spoke Sunday with Fox News’ Chris Wallace about his new bill banning President Obama’s ability to grant amnesty to illegal immigrants, which he believes will help stem the ongoing flood of illegal children fleeing poverty and violence in Central America.
Unsurprisingly, many Democrats do not share Cruz’s view on the issue.
“Some Democrats say — you talk about helping the children — that this is a humanitarian crisis above all else and the key is to help the children,” Wallace told Cruz. “Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid blames you, attacked you this week, saying radical Republicans are trying to hold these kids ransom.”
Wallace played a clip of Reid claiming “we wouldn’t be having this issue” if Congress had passed comprehensive immigration reform — adding also that “the border is secure.”
“Well, you know, President Obama and Harry Reid both engage in debates divorced from the facts and divorced from the reality,” Cruz claimed. “Harry Reid lives in the Ritz-Carlton in Washington, D.C. And I’m sure from his perspective, the border seems secure.”
“I would invite Harry Reid to come with me down to Texas and see the border,” the senator continued. “On the border, we are seeing the opposite of following the law. The border is not secured; 90,000 children are expected to come into this country illegally this year and Harry Reid says the border is secure?”
“I’ll tell you who’s holding these kids ransom is Harry Reid and the president,” Cruz charged, “because their view is, ‘Don’t do anything to fix the problem.'”
“He mentions comprehensive immigration reform,” the senator explained. “The Gang of Eight bill is one of the causes of this problem because what the kids are saying is they’re coming because they believe they’ll get amnesty; part of the Gang of Eight bill was promising them amnesty.”