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Extreme Anti-Immigrant Bill Promoted with White Nationalist Conspiracies Passes with Rep. Marc Molinaro’s Support

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Rep. Marc Molinaro (NY-19) provided a critical vote to help deliver the passage of H.R. 2, also known as the Child Deportation Act, in early May 2023. The bill is not a serious policy proposal for addressing the challenges at the border. It’s all politics that is far too often laced with rhetorical echos of white nationalist conspiracies that create the climate for hate-fueled violence. 

Over the months where it wound its way through the House and from the very beginning of the debate over the Child Deportation Act on the House floor, Molinaro’s Republican colleagues promoted the bill with white nationalist conspiracy theories about “replacement” and “invasion” that have inspired multiple domestic terrorist attacks.

In criticizing the Trump administration’s abhorrent family separation policy in 2018, then-New York gubernatorial candidate Molinaro said it was “not America. It doesn’t reflect my own values to have parents leveraged against children and children leveraged against parents.” Molinaro went on to say it was “a consistent failure by the federal government that is unwilling to solve major issues with immigration.” But H.R. 2 does none of that.

In his statement supporting H.R. 2, Molinaro falsely asserts that H.R.2 helps tackle the fentanyl crisis, but it does not. He also claims the bill is about “streamlining the asylum process and keeping families together.” Molinaro is correct if by “streamlining,” he means preventing migrants from accessing the process altogether. Molinaro also failed to mention the bill he voted for would keep families together in detention and deportation, not in the safety of the United States. He ends with the laughable line, “we need to put the partisan rhetoric aside and deliver a bipartisan solution,” in a statement about supporting a wholly partisan bill packed with partisan rhetoric that provides nothing in the way of solutions.   

Despite what his press release claims, the hard facts of his vote reveal that Molinaro sided with the extremists and obstructionists. Molinaro provided a critical vote to gut asylum, increase child and family detention, and create a show-me-your-papers scenario in the midst of future natural disaster relief efforts. Beyond cruelty, this bill does nothing to create solutions. Its centerpiece is, again, Trump’s wasteful and ineffective wall. Meanwhile, the GOP legislation would destroy legal pathways, including parole programs that create new legal pathways to the U.S. that alleviate pressures at the border. 

Actions speak louder than words, and Molinaro chose party over the communities and businesses he represents