Today’s DACA Vote: One Anti-immigrant Bill Down, One to Go

In response to a discharge petition to force a floor vote to protect young immigrants at risk of losing their status under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, House Speaker Paul Ryan scheduled a vote today on two bills that purportedly would offer DACA holders a way to remain legally in the U.S.

One of them, Rep. Bob Goodlatte’s H.R. 4760 “Securing America’s Future Act of 2018” deservedly went down to defeat today when 41 Republicans joined all House Democrats to vote no.  Representative Bruce Poliquin voted in favor of H.R. 4760.

H.R. 4760 would have offered only temporary status with no path to permanent residency for the over 700,000 young adults with DACA, while massively overhauling our immigration system without any Congressional hearings or in-depth debate.  H.R. 4760 proposed slashing legal immigration by nearly 400,000 per year, and eliminated most immediate family immigration categories, while failing even to grandfather those immediate family members with approved immigrant visa petitions who have already been waiting for years in the backlog to immigrate.   As our nation’s labor pool shrinks, H.R. 4760 represented exactly the wrong direction for our immigration policy. This commentary from the Cato Institute describes some of the bill’s many flaws that rightly led to its defeat.

Voting on the second so-called “compromise” bill, H.R. 6136, the “Border Security and Immigration Reform Act of 2018”, again sponsored by Rep. Goodlatte, was postpone  into next week.

H.R. 6136 should also be voted down. Among its many flaws, the Cato Institute estimates that it would cut legal immigration by 1.8 million people in the next twenty years – precisely the period when we need to fill the workforce ranks that baby boomers will be exiting.

Those with DACA do not want their futures to be at the expense of harmful reforms to the nation’s immigration laws. Both of Maine’s representatives should vote “no” on H.R. 6136.