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Earl Blumenauer on Immigration

Democratic Representative (OR-3)

 


Voted NO on building a fence along the Mexican border.

Within 18 months, achieves operational control over U.S. land and maritime borders, including:
  1. systematic border surveillance through more effective use of personnel and technology; and
  2. physical infrastructure enhancements to prevent unlawful border entry
Defines "operational control" as the prevention of all unlawful U.S. entries, including entries by terrorists, other unlawful aliens, narcotics, and other contraband.

Proponents support voting YES because:

It is obvious there is no more defining issue in our Nation today than stopping illegal immigration. The most basic obligation of any government is to secure the Nation's borders. One issue in which there appears to be a consensus between the Senate and the House is on the issue of building a secure fence. So rather than wait until comprehensive legislation is enacted, we should move forward on targeted legislation which is effective and meaningful. The legislation today provides over 700 miles of two-layered reinforced fencing, and for the rest of the border provides a virtual fence, via integrated surveillance technology.

Opponents support voting NO because:

Just to build the fence is going to cost us at least $7 billion. Where is the money coming from to pay for it? How much is it going to cost to maintain this 700-mile fence? Who is going to do it? This bill contains no funding.

This bill also ignores real enforcement measures, like hiring more Border Patrol personnel, and instead builds a Berlin Wall on our southern border. So long as employers need workers in this country, and while our immigration systems impede rather than facilitate timely access of willing workers to those opportunities, undocumented immigration will never be controlled.

Walls, barriers, and military patrols will only force those immigrants to utilize ever more dangerous routes and increase the number of people who die in search of an opportunity to feed and clothe their families.

Reference: Secure Fence Act; Bill H R 6061 ; vote number 2006-446 on Sep 14, 2006

Voted NO on preventing tipping off Mexicans about Minuteman Project.

Voting YES on this amendment supports the Minuteman Project, a group of volunteers who have taken on surveillance of the Mexican border for illegal immigrants. The amendment states that US funds will not be used to tell the Mexican government about the whereabouts of the Minuteman Project volunteers. Proponents of the Minuteman Project say that they are volunteer citizens doing what the federal government SHOULD be doing, but has failed to do. Opponents of the Minuteman Project say that they are vigilantes at best and anti-Mexican racists at worst. The amendment states:
None of the funds made available by this Act may be used to provide a foreign government information relating to the activities of an organized volunteer civilian action group, operating in the State of California, Texas, New Mexico, or Arizona, unless required by international treaty.
Reference: Department of Homeland Security appropriations; Bill HR 5441 Amendment 968 ; vote number 2006-224 on Jun 6, 2006

Voted NO on reporting illegal aliens who receive hospital treatment.

Vote to pass the bill that would require hospitals to gather and report information on possible illegal aliens before hospitals can be reimbursed for treating them. The bill would also make employers liable for the reimbursements if an undocumented employee seeks medical attention, unless the employer meets particular conditions for exemption. The bill would specify that hospitals aren't required to provide care to undocumented aliens if they can be transported to their home country without a significant chance of worsening their condition.
Reference: Undocumented Alien Emergency Medical Assistance Amendments; Bill HR 3722 ; vote number 2004-182 on May 20, 2004

Voted YES on more immigrant visas for skilled workers.

Vote to pass a bill to increase the number of temporary visas granted to highly skilled workers from 65,000 to 115,000 by the year 2000.
Reference: Bill introduced by Smith, R-TX.; Bill HR 3736 ; vote number 1998-460 on Sep 24, 1998

Rated 0% by FAIR, indicating a voting record loosening immigration.

Blumenauer scores 0% by FAIR on immigration issues

The Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) is a national, non-profit, public interest membership organization of concerned citizens united by their belief in the need for immigration reform. Founded in 1979, FAIR believes that the U.S. can and must have an immigration policy that is non-discriminatory and designed to serve the environmental, economic, and social needs of our country.

FAIR seeks to improve border security, to stop illegal immigration, and to promote immigration levels consistent with the national interestómore traditional rates of about 300,000 a year.

With more than 70,000 members nationwide, FAIR is a non-partisan group whose membership runs the gamut from liberal to conservative.

The ratings are based on the votes the organization considered most important; the numbers reflect the percentage of time the representative voted the organization's preferred position.

Source: FAIR website 03n-FAIR on Dec 31, 2003

Rated 0% by USBC, indicating an open-border stance.

Blumenauer scores 0% by USBC on immigration issues

OnTheIssues.org interprets the 2005-2006 USBC scores as follows:

About USBC (from their website, www.usbc.org):

U.S. Border Control, founded in 1988, is a non-profit, tax-exempt, citizen's lobby. USBC is dedicated to ending illegal immigration by securing our nation's borders and reforming our immigration policies. USBC [works with] Congressmen to stop amnesty; seal our borders against terrorism and illegal immigration; and, preserve our nation's language, culture and American way of life for future generations.

Our organization accepts no financial support from any branch of government. All our support comes from concerned citizens who appreciate the work we are doing to seal our borders against drugs, disease, illegal migration and terrorism and wish to preserve our nation's language, culture and heritage for the next generations.

Source: USBC website 06n-USBC on Dec 31, 2006

Allow more visas for STEM college graduates.

Blumenauer co-sponsored Attracting the Best and Brightest Act

Source: HR6412/S3553 12-HR6412 on Sep 14, 2012

Voted to legalize DREAMer immigrants via military service.

Blumenauer voted NAY Gosar Anti-DACA Amendment to H.R. 5293

Congressional Summary: The House voted on an amendment by Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ) to H.R. 5293, the Department of Defense Appropriations Act of 2017. The amendment would prohibit funds from being used to extend the expiration of, or reissue a new expiration date to, the Military Accessions Vital to National Interest (MAVNI) program.

Recommendation by Heritage Foundation to vote YES:(6/16/2016): The MAVNI program is a pilot program authorizing "military services to recruit certain legal immigrants whose skills are considered to be vital to the national interest." However, a DoD memo has made it clear that DACA/DAPA recipients are eligible under this program, essentially opening up a pathway to amnesty for illegal aliens who enlist. By ensuring that this guidance ends, DOD will no longer be able to enlist illegal immigrants through MAVNI.

Recommendation by the ACLU to vote NO: (6/28/2011): The DREAM Act promotes fundamental fairness for young people by allowing access to affordable post-secondary education and military service opportunities, regardless of immigration status, and would provide a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. as children, have lived here for at least five years and have graduated from high school. The DREAM Act could result in billions of dollars in additional tax revenue from tapping the potential of DREAM-eligible students and future service personnel. Since September 11, 2001, more than 69,000 immigrants have earned citizenship while serving, and more than 125 who entered military service after that date have made the ultimate sacrifice in war by giving their lives for this nation.

Legislative outcome: Failed House 210 to 211 (no Senate vote)

Source: Congressional vote 16-H5293 on Jun 16, 2016

Provide lawyers and evidence for children being deported.

Blumenauer co-sponsored H.R.4646/S.2540

This bill authorizes the Department of Justice (DOJ) to appoint or provide counsel at government expense to aliens in removal proceedings.

  • The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) shall provide an alien in removal proceedings with all relevant documents in its possession, unless the alien has knowingly waived the right to such documents.
  • DOJ may appoint or provide counsel to aliens in any INA proceeding.
  • DHS shall ensure that aliens have access to counsel inside all immigration detention and border facilities.
  • DOJ shall appoint counsel, at government expense if necessary, for an unaccompanied alien child or a particularly vulnerable individual.
  • DHS shall establish a pilot program to increase the court appearance rates of unaccompanied alien children and particularly vulnerable individuals by contracting with nongovernmental, community-based organizations to provide such aliens with case management services.
    Source: Fair Day in Court for Kids Act 16-HR4646 on Feb 26, 2016

    Increase both high-skill and family-based visa caps.

    Blumenauer co-sponsored the Fairness for High-Skilled Immigrants Act

    Legislative Summary:This bill increases the per-country cap on family-based immigrant visas from 7% of the total number of such visas available that year to 15%, and eliminates the 7% cap for employment-based immigrant visas. It also removes an offset that reduced the number of visas for individuals from China. The bill also establishes transition rules for employment-based visas from FY2020-FY2022, by reserving a percentage of EB-2 (workers with advanced degrees or exceptional ability), EB-3 (skilled and other workers), and EB-5 (investors) visas for individuals not from the two countries with the largest number of recipients of such visas. Of the unreserved visas, not more than 85% shall be allotted to immigrants from any single country.

    Explanation from the Countable.US: Under the current immigration system, immigrants from any one country can claim no more than 7% of the 140,000 employment-based green cards issued annually to foreign nationals working in the U.S. This significantly disadvantages immigrants from larger countries that more immigrants come from.

    For example, China (population 1.3 billion) and India have large backlogs of workers wishing to immigrate to and work in the U.S., but they have the name visa caps as countries such as Iceland or Estonia (population 1.3 million), which have both much smaller populations and far fewer citizens seeking to immigrate to the U.S.

    The net effect of this is that immigrants from India and China can face decades-long waits, averaging 2-3 times the wait times for immigrants from other countries, for green cards, and many have to return home because they can't get permanent residency; meanwhile, countries such as Iceland and Estonia never come close to reaching their visa limit caps.

    Legislative outcome Roll call 437 in House on 7/10/2019 passed 365-65-2; referred to Committee in Senate 7/9/2019; no action as of 1/1/2020.

    Source: S.386/H.R.1044 19-HR1044 on Feb 7, 2019

    Sponsored bill to disallow religion-based immigration ban.

    Blumenauer co-sponsored NO BAN Act

    The National Origin-Based Antidiscrimination for Nonimmigrants Act (NO BAN Act) imposes limitations on the President's authority to suspend or restrict aliens from entering the US. It also prohibits religious discrimination in various immigration-related decisions, such as issuing a visa. The President may temporarily restrict the entry of any class of aliens after determining that the restriction would address specific and credible facts that threaten U.S. interests such as security or public safety.

    GovTrack.us analysis (4/21/21): President Donald Trump instituted a travel ban on eight countries: Chad, Iran, Iraq, Libya, North Korea, Syria, Venezuela, and Yemen. The Supreme Court upheld the travel ban 5-4 in the 2018 decision†Trump v. Hawaii. Trump's travel ban was popularly nicknamed "the Muslim ban" by its Democratic critics since most of the countries it applied to were majority Muslim, and because Trump as a 2016 candidate had indeed proposed a Muslim ban. Regardless, President Joe Biden rescinded the policy on his first day in office. Currently, federal law bans any person from being discriminated against when entering the U.S. on the basis of five characteristics: race, sex, nationality, place of birth, or place of residence. The NO BAN Act would add another category: religion.

    Rep. Tom McClintock in OPPOSITION: President Trump invoked this authority against countries that were hotbeds of international terrorism and that were not cooperating with the US in providing basic information about travelers coming from these countries. The left called it a 'Muslim ban.' What nonsense. Without this authority, the president would have been powerless to take simple, prudent precautions against terrorists and criminals from entering the US.

    Legislative Outcome: Passed House 218-208-3 on April 21, 2021, rollcall #127; introduced in Senate with 42 co-sponsors but no further Senate action during 2021.

    Source: H.R.1333/S.1891 21-HR1333 on Feb 25, 2021

    2021-22 Governor, House and Senate candidates on Immigration: Earl Blumenauer on other issues:
    OR Gubernatorial:
    Bud Pierce
    Casey Kulla
    Christine Drazan
    Julian Bell
    Kate Brown
    Kerry McQuisten
    Knute Buehler
    Nicholas Kristof
    Paul Romero
    Tina Kotek
    Tobias Read
    OR Senatorial:
    Jeff Merkley
    Kevin Stine
    Mark Callahan
    Paul Romero
    Ron Wyden
    Open Seats / Turnovers 2022:
    AL-5: Mo Brooks (R) running for AL Senator
    CA-37: Karen Bass (D) running for mayor of Los Angeles
    FL-10: Val Demings (D) running for FL Senator
    FL-13: Charlie Crist (D) running for FL governor
    HI-2: Kai Kahele (D) running for MD governor
    MD-4: Anthony G. Brown (D) running for attorney general of Maryland
    MO-4: Vicky Hartzler (R) running for MO Senator
    MO-7: Billy Long (R) running for MO Senator
    NY-1: Lee Zeldin (R) running for NY governor
    NY-3: Thomas Suozzi (D) running for NY governor
    NC-8: Ted Budd (R) running for NC Senator
    NC-11: Madison Cawthorn (R) Incumbent lost renomination
    OH-13: Tim Ryan (D) running for OH Senator
    OK-2: Markwayne Mullin (R) running for OK Senator
    OR-5: Kurt Schrader (D) Incumbent lost renomination
    PA-17: Conor Lamb (D) running for PA Senator
    SC-7: Tom Rice (R) Incumbent lost renomination
    TX-1: Louie Gohmert (R) running for attorney general of Texas
    VT-0: Peter Welch (D) running for VT Senator

    Special Elections 2021:
    LA-2: Troy Carter (R, April 2021)
    LA-5: Julia Letlow (R, March 2021)
    NM-1: Melanie Stansbury (D, June 2021)
    OH-11: Shontel Brown (D, Nov. 2021)
    OH-15: Mike Carey (R, Nov. 2021)
    TX-6: Jake Ellzey (R, July 2021)
    Hot Races 2022:
    CA-27: Christy Smith (D) vs. Mike Garcia (R)
    FL 27: Annette Taddeo (D) vs. Maria Elvira Salazar (R)
    GA-7: Carolyn Bourdeaux (D) lost redistricting race to Lucy McBath (D)
    GA-10: Vernon Jones(R) vs. Paul Broun (R,lost May 24 primary) to replace Jody Hice (R) running for Secretary of GA
    ME-2: Bruce Poliquin (R) rematch against Jared Golden (D)
    MI-10: John James (R) - running for newly redistricted seat
    MI-11: Andy Levin (D) redistricted to face Haley Stevens (D)
    MT 1: Ryan Zinke (R) - running for newly created seat
    MT-2: Al Olszewski(R) vs. Sam Rankin(Libertarian) vs. Matt Rosendale(R)
    NJ-7: Thomas Kean Jr. (R) challenging Tom Malinowski (R)
    NY-10: Bill de Blasio (D) challenging Mondaire Jones (D)
    NY-11: Max Rose (D) challenging Nicole Malliotakis (R)
    NY 12: Carolyn Maloney (D) redistricted to face Jerry Nadler (D)
    RI-2: Seth Magaziner (D) vs. Allan Fung (R)
    RI-1: Allen Waters (R) vs. David Cicilline (D)
    TX-34: Mayra Flores (R) - Elected SPEL June 2022; general election Nov. 2022 against Vicente Gonzalez (D)
    WA-4: Brad Klippert (R) challenging Dan Newhouse (R)
    WV-2: David McKinley lost a redistricting race to fellow incumbent Alex Mooney

    Special Elections 2022:
    AK-0: Sarah Palin (R) vs. Al Gross (Independent)
    CA-22: Connie Conway (R) replaced Devin Nunes on June 7.
    FL-20: Sheila Cherfilus-McCormick (D) replaced Alcee Hastings on Jan. 11.
    MN-1: vacancy left by Jim Hagedorn (R), deceased Feb. 17; SPEL on August 9.
    NE-1: Jeffrey Fortenberry (R) Resigned on March 31, after being convicted; Mike Flood (R) in SPEL on June 28.
    NY-19: Marc Molinaro (R) running for SPEL Aug. 23 for seat vacated by Antonio Delgado (D), now Lt.Gov.
    TX-34: Mayra Flores (R) SPEL June 14 for seat vacated by Filemon Vela Jr. (D)
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    Page last updated: Oct 02, 2022; copyright 1999-2022 Jesse Gordon and OnTheIssues.org