Friday, April 19, 2024

Trump Adviser Kris Kobach Is Toughening Up On Immigration


President-elect Donald Trump’s immigration adviser Kris Kobach warned Tuesday no one living here illegally will get a “free pass” and predicted many immigrant would leave as jobs and benefits “dry up.” Kobach made the statement on Fox News when he was asked what Trump plans to do about people here illegally, but are working hard and are not regarded as criminals.

Kobach reached back to the immigration speech Trump made in August in Phoenix. In that speech, Trump said “every person in this country has to follow American law. No person living here illegally gets a free pass, like they did under the Obama administration,” Kobach said. “The jobs are going to dry up, the welfare benefits are going to dry up, and a lot of people who may not be criminal illegal aliens may decide, hey, it’s getting hard to disobey federal law, and may leave on their own,” he said.

Undocumented immigrants cannot receive the government benefit that is often called welfare, but is officially known as Temporary Assistance for Needy Families. They also cannot apply for healthcare or other benefits. The federally and state funded program is designed to assist children, so a U.S. citizen child of a parent not legally here, can qualify for it. The same may be true for health care or other programs.

Separately, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy said on Fox News that work already is under way on border wall legislation and the GOP-controlled House won’t wait on Trump’s inauguration to try to advance it. “We actually just went back into session yesterday, and I put together a team actually with the speaker and other staff, that is working on the legislation now so that when we’re sworn in, not waiting for when the president is sworn in, but at the very first week of January, that we are able to move the legislation needed to build the wall,” McCarthy said.

The “self-deportation” idea has raised questions in the past about how far officials will go to “dry up” any benefits. It also can create problems when applied to mixed status families, particularly when parents are illegally in the country but children are not. Making life so difficult for immigrants that they return to their country of origin – self-deportation – is an idea that has been floated by many wanting to slow or halt immigration.

NBC News