Process Rushed, American Interests Hushed

(Washington, D.C.  April 22, 2013)  After months of excluding those who disagree with granting amnesty to illegal aliens and massive increases in overall immigration from having access or input into the Gang of Eight’s immigration bill, critics of the so-called reform bill are now being marginalized in hearings before the Senate Judiciary Committee, charged the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR).

The overwhelming majority of witnesses scheduled to testify before the Judiciary Committee hearing on Monday represent the interests of illegal aliens or cheap labor.  Only a handful of witnesses were invited to represent the interests of Americans, who are worried about jobs and security, especially in light of last week’s events in Boston.

“The Judiciary Committee hearing is just the latest example of the determination of the Senate leadership to rush a massive illegal alien amnesty bill through the legislative process at all costs,” stated Dan Stein, president of FAIR. “Leaving aside the fact that Senators and witnesses have had just five days to read and analyze a complex 844-page bill, the witness list demonstrates the Judiciary Committee’s intent to stifle criticism of the plan laid out by the Gang of Eight.

“The advocates for illegal aliens and business interests have already had their input – they have been meeting regularly with the Gang of Eight, and their influence can be found on almost every one of the 844 pages,” Stein continued. “Now the Judiciary Committee is engaging in a sham hearing process designed to prevent critical examination of the costs of this bill, its potential impact on struggling American workers, the risks to our homeland security, and whether it would truly deliver on promises to prevent mass illegal immigration in the future.

“This piece of legislation holds the potential to radically alter not just American immigration policy, but virtually every aspect of life in the United States. It deserves an open, exhaustive and fair hearing process to ensure that members of the Senate and the American public fully understand all the ramifications of this bill.

“As recently as last week, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) publicly promised multiple hearings before multiple committees with jurisdiction over various aspects of the bill to ensure that all voices are heard and that all objections are considered. A hastily arranged hearing, where three-fourths of the witnesses represent interests that helped write the bill, hardly constitutes the sort of scrutiny a bill of this magnitude requires and the American people deserve,” Stein concluded.