It’s no secret that if immigration reform manages to make it through the Republican-controlled House of Representatives, it more than likely will not feature a path to citizenship. And while arguments against a path of citizenship range from economic concern-trolling to outright Xenophobia, this one is particularly baffling.
“The 11 million is not a homogeneous group,” Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC), chairman of the House Judiciary Committee’s Immigration Subcommittee, said during an appearance on Fox News Sunday. “All of the 11 million don’t want citizenship. It would be curious to force it on those who don’t want it,” he added, noting that millions won’t be able to pass background checks.
We shouldn’t provide a path to citizenship because some immigrants don’t want it. So says a conservative congressman from South Carolina, speaking for immigrants.
That’s a curious rationale given that current law is designed to facilitate those who only wish to work here temporarily, not those who wish to immigrate permanently. And, last time I checked, the Senate bill does not eliminate guest worker programs. It does not “force” anyone to become a citizen.
My mistake, of course, is in taking Trey Gowdy seriously. What he really means to say is they welcome cheap labor but they do not want to allow more brown people to participate in the Democratic process.