By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter
On Tuesday, January 6, Congressman Robert Aderholt (R-Haleyville) was sworn in for his tenth term in the US House of Representatives. Also on Tuesday, Aderholt introduced legislation to repeal President Obama’s Executive Amnesty actions. The Aderholt bill, H.R. 191, has already received early endorsements from US Senator Jeff Sessions (R-Alabama), Congressman Gary Palmer (R-Hoover), and Congressman Bradley Byrne (R-Montrose).
Congressman Aderholt said in a written statement, “In the oath I took today, I swore to protect and defend the United States Constitution. That also means upholding our nation’s laws and laws passed by Congress concerning immigration. The laws of the land make it clear that it is illegal to enter the United States without going through the proper channels. The President’s order to enact amnesty, issued in November, circumvents Congress and sets a dangerous precedent. So, today I have introduced legislation that will reverse the President’s executive action. It not only defunds the President’s actions towards amnesty but also removes the President’s discretion in the ability to grant work permits, Social Security, and other federal benefits that go along with his order.”
Senator Sessions said in his own written statement, “President Obama’s executive amnesty voids the laws Congress has passed in order to foist on the nation measures Congress has refused to pass. In violation of U.S. law, it grants illegal immigrants work permits, Social Security, and Medicare—taking jobs and benefits directly from struggling Americans. The President has arrogated to himself the sole and absolute power to decide who can enter, live, work, and claim benefits in the United States.”
US Representative Gary Palmer announced in a written statement that he will co-sponsor the bill. Rep. Palmer said, “President Obama has created a constitutional crisis, and members of the Congress are obligated by their own oaths to the constitution to respond to the crisis. This legislation does that and would restore constitutional balance between the branches of government. By taking this action, Congress reasserts its constitutional powers and establishes a foundation for opposing future executive orders that usurp Congressional authority.”
Representative Bradley Byrne said on Facebook, “I am proud to support and co-sponsor Congressman Robert Aderholt’s bill to defund President Obama’s executive action on immigration. This is a strong bill that has the support and input from Senator Jeff Sessions. Next week the House will act on legislation relating to immigration, and I strongly hope Congressman Aderholt’s bill is part of that package.”
Rep. Aderholt said, “My legislation will also put limits on the President’s future ability to enact such wide-reaching actions that circumvent the Constitution’s separation of powers. It returns the legislative authority of our government back to the Legislative Branch.”
Sen. Sessions said, “Before the election, RNC Chairman Reince Priebus made a promise: ‘We will do everything we can to make sure it doesn’t happen… We can’t allow it to happen and we won’t let it happen. I don’t know how to be any stronger than that. I’m telling you, everything we can do to stop it we will.’ Legislation introduced by Congressman Aderholt would fulfill that pledge and accomplish that goal. It would block funds for the President’s illegal scheme; surely, Congress should not fund an illegal act that eliminates our constitutional role as a lawmaking body.”
Sen. Sessions continued, “Further, the Aderholt bill would take steps to address one of the most serious problems now unfolding: the mass release of illegal immigrants who show up at the border into the interior of the country. Approximately 99% of the Central American youth and adult relatives who showed up unlawfully this year presently remain in the United States. No ‘border security’ plan can succeed that does not begin to end the destructive practice of catch-and-release. Simply providing the President with more money for ‘border security’ will be turned into a slush fund to resettle illegal immigrants in the interior of the United States.”
Sessions said that, “Republicans should focus on these and other discrete enforcement measures—like mandatory E-Verify and closing tax credit loopholes—that will encourage repatriation and protect jobs and benefits for Americans, while launching a sustained and unrelenting campaign to block all funds for the President’s border-erasing Executive Amnesty. The question will then be left on the desk of congressional Democrats: will you protect the President’s order, or the people who elected you?”
Representative Palmer said, “In passing this legislation, through the power of the purse, we will be preserving the power of Congress and halting the President’s unconstitutional action. I look forward to working with my colleagues to see its passage.”
Representative Aderholt concluded, “As we begin this new session of Congress, it will be the President’s first experience working with a Congress entirely controlled by the Republicans. I hope that Mr. Obama understands that the American people spoke very loudly during the election in November and want a new direction away from his liberal policies.”
Congressman Aderholt serves as Chairman of the Subcommittee on Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies for the powerful House Appropriations Committee. Rep. Aderholt is also a member of the Committee’s Defense Subcommittee, the Committee’s Commerce, Justice, and Science Subcommittee, and is a member of the Helsinki Commission. With the recent retirement of Congressman Spencer Bachus (R-Vestavia), Representative Aderholt, with ten terms, is now the senior member of the Alabama House Delegation. Congressman Aderholt represents Alabama’s Fourth Congressional District.
US Senator Jeff Sessions serves on four Senate committees: Armed Services, Judiciary, Environment and Public Works, and the Budget Committee.
Congressman Bradley Byrne represents Alabama’s First Congressional District; while Palmer represents the Sixth Congressional District.