Tea Party Senators Prep for Immigration Battle
Secure the border. Without that nothing else in the argument matters.
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Sens. Rand Paul (R-KY), Mike Lee (R-UT) and Ted Cruz (R-TX) now each appear to be positioning themselves in the fight against the push for the “Gang of Eight” immigration bill in much the same way the Senate’s Tea Party triumvirate knocked down the left’s push for new gun control legislation.
The three are joining Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) in questioning every painstaking detail of the bill, and reframing the narrative that those in favor of the legislation have driven including the need for a “path to citizenship” for America’s at least 11 million illegal immigrants and that the bill is tough on securing the border. Together, the group is using every tool at its disposal in the Senate–public pressure, process disputes and aggressive oversight procedures, among others–to fight against the legislation.
They face an uphill battle, even more so than they did when fighting against new gun control legislation. This time around, right off the bat, the four Republicans in the Gang of Eight already back the bill. Also, they have been a little bit slower to coalesce against this bill because they have been so busy fighting gun control, and immigration reform in and of itself and if done differently is not something they oppose. They just oppose this bill because it does not do immigration reform the way they think it should be done.