WASHINGTON DC – Tidal waves are still hitting congressional districts in the wake of last week's $1.1 Trillion Omnibus Budget vote. The pro-legal immigration group Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) scoured the bi-partisan budget agreement and found that it leaves intact "dangerous and illegal Obama immigration policies" that the Republican leadership claimed to oppose while "selling out on essential protections" for American workers.
Among the provisions of the omnibus bill that FAIR says "compromises the interests of the American people:"
- The bill fails to incorporate language already approved by the House to close loopholes in the William Wilberforce Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act (TVPRA) of 2008 that allow minors and adults with children to enter and remain in the U.S. indefinitely. These loopholes have resulted in a sustained surge of illegal immigration across our Southern border.
- The bill does not cut off funding for large-scale resettlement of Syrian refugees, despite public testimony bill intelligence officials and empirical evidence after the San Bernardino attack that there are serious and dangerous deficiencies in the screening process.
- Despite strong rhetoric that the president's 2014 executive amnesty programs are unconstitutional, and a Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals ruling upholding an injunction barring the programs' implementation, the omnibus omits language that would defund these programs should the Supreme Court lift the injunction.
- The bill maintains funding for an office within the Department of Justice to provide legal defense for illegal aliens fighting their removal from the U.S.
- The omnibus does not include language withholding certain funds from sanctuary jurisdictions that obstruct federal immigration enforcement. The House approved legislation to defund sanctuary jurisdictions in July, after the murder of Kate Steinle in San Francisco.
- The bill triples the number of low- and unskilled guest workers by exempting returning H-2B workers from counting against the annual cap.
- The legislation fails to make the highly effective E-Verify program permanent. E-Verify is a vital protection against American workers losing job opportunities to illegal aliens.
- The bill continues the fraud-ridden EB-5 program, which allows foreign nationals to buy their way into the United States.
- While the bill increases funding for immigration enforcement, it does nothing to compel the executive branch to carry out countless laws enacted by Congress.
"The power of the purse is Congress's most effective tool to rein in President Obama's abuse of executive authority in immigration policy, and to deter local governments from instituting sanctuary policies that obstruct immigration enforcement," FAIR writes. "Yet, once again, both the House and Senate leadership failed to use that power to curb unpopular and dangerous policies."