Now that the government has reopened, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has “promised” Senate Democrats a vote on a bill that will address the crisis affecting Dreamers since the DACA program was ended by President Trump in September.
Leading the efforts on the Republican side is Texas Sen. John Cornyn, who is self-reportedly “having a minimum of three meetings a day,” on immigration, in an attempt to ensure that the nearly 800,000 DACA recipients don’t lose their work authorizations when the March 5 deadline hits.
There is an important catch. There is no way that Sen. Cornyn can be trusted. Let me repeat. In no way can Dreamers, the immigrant community, our allies, or moderate Democrats, trust that Sen. Cornyn will do anything to address the issues in a way that doesn’t appease the right-wing members of Congress and the right-wing nationalists in the Administration.
How do we know? Look at his record.
Do not fall for the Cornyn Con. For years, literally years, Sen. Cornyn has talked a big game on immigration only to delay the process to death and get Congress to “no”. It happened in 2013, when our country had a chance to pass a bill that would have put millions of people onto a path to citizenship, and it’s happening again today.
Because of that, it’s important that we list out exactly why we can’t trust Sen. John Cornyn:
- In 2017, Sen. Cornyn along with Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) introduced a poison-pill bill that claimed it was trying to help Dreamers — while actually pushing a number of anti-immigrant measures.
- In 2013, Sen. Cornyn introduced an amendment to S. 744, an immigration reform bill, that was so far to the right that it became painfully obvious that he was attempting to poison the piece of legislation.
- In 2010, Sen. John Cornyn voted against the Dream Act, and despite his big talk on immigration, proved once again that he has no intention of voting in support of immigration reform or legislation that would protect Dreamers.
- In 2006-7, Sen. John Cornyn, during the immigration reform debate, repeatedly introduced poison-pill amendments to undermine potential for passage. After the 2007 bill was defeated, in part because of his actions, Cornyn had the audacity to stand up to give a speech on the Senate floor — about the need to pass immigration reform.
So, yes, we’ve seen this sweet talk from Cornyn before. But, he always manages to get to “no”. And, he’ll do it again. If Senate Democrats aren’t careful, they will end up aiding and abetting him. They need to look at his record. Or talk to anyone who has worked on the immigration issue, including advocates in Texas.