Sean Hannity interviewed Jeb Bush on the CPAC 2015 stage on the issues of immigration and Common Core. The following transcript is Bush’s comments on immigration. I’ll have his Common Core comments in another post [update: posted here].
Don’t miss what he had to say about the “100,000” that invaded us from Central America last summer. We should have told them it wasn’t safe to come here, and if we had explained it to them, they wouldn’t have come, said Jeb. I suspect our government was complicit by encouraging someone, somewhere, to make that invasion happen. Are we really to believe that it was not a coordinated effort?
A couple of points:
1) Jeb Bush has praised the U.S. Senate’s “Comprehensive Immigration Reform” bill, which DID NOT secure our borders. You’ll remember in that bill, the pathway to citizenship was put on an accelerated path, and then-Secretary of Homeland Security, Janet Napolitano, was the sole authority on declaring our borders secure. To support Homeland Security’s sole authority is to hand our nation over. Where was/is the push to bring our governors into determining border status?
The Senate bill also allowed, as Jeb referred to it, deep “petitioning,” of those family members who could immigrate on the coattails of the illegal in America. In the interview with Hannity, he said only spouses and children should be allowed in, but the Senate bill he supports allows many other family members to cross, including felons. Under the Senate bill, an alien could have two drunk driving offenses. A third might trigger some response. Under the Gang of 8 Senate bill, an alien is allowed three fraudulent passports before a crime is committed.
Under the Senate bill, border patrol would be moved to the Department of Justice’s Human Rights Division (same division that allowed the New Black Panther Party to skate on voter intimidation charges in Philadelphia, during the 2008 presidential elections). Where is that discussion?
Bush encouraged Senate Gang of 8 members, Senators Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Jeff Flake (R-AZ), to “stay the course.”
2) I haven’t heard Jeb ask why the Senate has refused to take up the many House bills on immigration.
3) Where is the discussion of why it is NOT a felony to cross illegally into the U.S., or to overstay a visa?
4) Where is the discussion on visa reform?
BEGIN PARTIAL TRANSCRIPT: Jeb Bush on immigration at CPAC 2015
HANNITY: When you were governor, you said:
“Yeah, they broke the law, it’s not a felony, it’s an act of love.” You also said you support a path to citizenship. When you were governor, you supported drivers licenses for illegal immigrants and you supported in-state tuition prices for those children of illegal immigrants.
BUSH: In [my] book I talk about the need to enforce the borders. A great country needs to enforce borders for national security purposes, public health purposes, and the rule of law. First and foremost we have to do that. Secondly we need a narrow family petitioning so that it’s the same as every other country, spouses and minor children, not this broad definition of spouse, minor children, adult siblings and adult parents, that crowds out what we need, which are economic driven immigrants. Those who come here to work, to invest in their dreams in this country, to create opportunities for all of us, and that’s what we need to get to.
The plan also includes a path to legal status. I have not seen anybody, and I know there’s disagreement here–some of these people are angry about this, and, look, I kinda feel your pain….The simple fact is we are not going to deport 11 million people, We should give them a path to legal status, where they work. They don’t receive government benefits, where they don’t break the law, where they learn English, and where they make a contribution to our society. That’s what we need to be focused on.
HANNITY: I asked Senator Rubio of Florida this same question. We always hear about spending cuts and tax increases. We always get the tax increase. We never get the spending cut. The Congress has tried comprehensive immigration reform, and it has failed. We now have a crisis going on with Homeland Security and the President’s executive orders. My question is, why not secure the borders first, once it’s verified secure…?
BUSH: Let’s do it. Let’s do it, man.
HANNITY: Then talk about…
BUSH: So instead of having a political argument about this–the president did use authority he doesn’t have. %he courts are going to overrule that. I’ve been consistent about that. Let’s control the border. There’s nothing wrong with that. That’s what a great nation has to do. There’s nothing that holds back the Republicans to put a comprehensive plan in place to do that.
The simple fact is, this nation needs to start growing at a far faster rate than we’re growing today. We have to be young and dynamic and aspirational again for all the young people in this crowd to be able to get a job, a purpose and meaning. We need to change the subject to high-sustained economic growth.
HANNITY: Do you agree with conservatives that say Congress should not pass a Homeland Security funding bill that would fund the president’s illegal and unconstitutional amnesty.
BUSH: The Congress ought to pass a bill that does not allow him to use that authority.
HANNITY: And they should stand their ground?
BUSH: Look, I don’t know. I’m not an expert on the ways of Washington. It makes no sense to me that we’re not funding control of our border, which is the whole argument. I’m missing something. The simple fact is the president has gone way beyond his constitutional powers to do this, and the Congress has every right to reinstate their responsibility for what law is about.
HANNITY: One-hundred thousand people came from Central America. We all watched over last summer. Should they be sent home? Yes or No?
BUSH: I thought they should have been sent home at the border, to be honest with you, because it would have created…here’s the deal, the humanitarian thing to do would have been to consistently say, from the beginning, don’t risk your lives crossing as young people. Don’t pay the gangsters in Central America money from your family members in this country to come all the way across and just get into the country and be processed. Now, with our broken system, it may take three or four years to even begin to process them. Send a clear signal that this was a dangerous thing to do, and the wrong thing to do, and it would have stopped the flow. We did that, as it relates to, in Miami, Florida. That’s exactly what Bush 41 did, as it related to Haitians, and it stopped the flow of people, and people didn’t lose their lives trying to come to this country.
HANNITY: Right now at this point, the country at this moment in history, we have 50 million Americans nearly in poverty–nearly 50 million Americans on food stamps, the lowest labor participation rate since the 1970s. I want you to connect it to immigration. Shouldn’t Americans have the opportunity for those jobs first? You say, go to the back to the line, but if they go to the back of the line, they still get to stay here and compete for those jobs?
BUSH: You either believe that the pie is static, that’s the Left’s point of view. Many on the Right don’t agree with that, but with their policies, they imply it. Therefore, we’re splitting up…someone’s benefit is someone’s else’s detriment. I believe we ought to be focused on growing the economic pie, and growing it at a rate that looks more like the ’80s in America. Growing it closer to four percent, not two percent. If we stay in this anemic economic rate, then your argument becomes valid, but if we grow at four percent, there’s going to be opportunities for all. It’s not a zero-sum game. That’s not how Republicans and conservatives think. We don’t think it’s just all about the government divvying it up for us to get our crumbs. We believe we should pursue our dreams as we see fit, and the more people doing it with the capacity to achieve our success, the more economic growth will take place.
HANNITY: As governor, do you stand by the decision, driver’s licenses for illegals?
BUSH: Didn’t happen.
HANNITY: Didn’t happen, but you tried. And the other decision about in-state tuition hikes for children?
BUSH: I do. I do. In fact, that was the–the in-state tuition was passed this year by one of the most conservative state legislatures, and a conservative governor signed it into law this last year.
So, no answer from Jeb on driver’s licenses for illegals. When the opportunity arises, we must him give us that answer, and ask how he can support the passed Gang of 8 bill. See the entire video here.