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Fox Anchor Turns the Tables on GOP Rep Over Death of Immigration Bill

Fox News
Fox News

Fox News anchor Neil Cavuto pressed Rep. Tony Gonzales (R-TX) Thursday about congressional Republicans abandoning the Senate’s immigration bill earlier this month, asking if the real reason it failed was because Donald Trump opposed it and many Republicans “are scared stiff of the guy.”

On Your World, Cavuto began by mentioning how President Joe Biden is reportedly mulling executive actions to limit the flow of migrants to the southern border. In response, Gonzales, whose district includes a substantial portion of the Texas-Mexico border, said he felt “encouraged” by the news, which he added was long overdue.

“Some of the things that I’ve been advocating for is deport, deport, deport those people that do not qualify for asylum,” he said. “You do that by surging immigration judges to the border and giving ICE what they need for the repatriation flights… These are some things the president can do today, and I hope they do it.”

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Biden’s apparent willingness to address the issue comes after Republicans walked away from a bipartisan border deal co-authored by one of its own members, Sen. James Lankford (R-OK). Gonzales claimed that his party did so because of a stipulation stating that an average of 5,000 migrants claiming asylum per day allows authorities to then be stricter about declining entry to additional migrants, which Republicans twisted into a bigger, misleading issue.

“That package failed because the number they agreed on was 5,000. The number that should have been agreed on should always be zero for illegal immigration. There should be no number that is acceptable, and there should be a discussion on those that want to come and do it the right way,” Gonzales said.

Cavuto then interjected.

“Didn’t that package really fail because Donald Trump didn’t want it, and many in your party—I’m not saying you are, sir—are scared stiff of the guy? You didn’t want to offend him. You didn’t want to tick him off. So that’s why it died?” Cavuto asked.

Gonzales, a supporter of Trump’s 2024 campaign, didn’t address Trump’s influence specifically.

“Well, what if I told you, Neil, this is a lucrative topic and everybody wants to just mine it and nobody wants to solve it,” he said, a remark that presumably could include Trump himself.

On the issue of immigration, some Trump-friendly Republicans have indicated that they don’t want to give Biden something to point to—a successful border bill and lower numbers of illegal crossings—in order to increase his re-election chances.

“I think Americans have had enough with the politics, and we’re not going to wait until a new president comes to solve it,” Gonzales said. “Let’s solve it today.”

Cavuto, noting that the deal “wasn’t perfect,” tried again.

“The fact that Donald Trump didn’t like it, many in your party didn’t want to fight him. They’re scared of him, or he’s bedeviling them, or, I don’t know, he’s going to come back and do something horrible—I don’t know what it is. And that’s what blew it up,” the Fox anchor said.

“It fell apart,” Gonzales replied without attributing fault. “I’m of the mindset that we have to do something today. House Republicans should take a downpayment on border security in ‘24, and we come back for the rest in ‘25.”

“I’m committed to not stopping until that happens. I’ll work with anyone—as long as it’s meaningful,” he went on. “It can’t just be window dressing and moving the problem around. Meaningful—surge immigration judges to the border and get cases heard in days, not years. Give ICE the resources that they need to get these people sent back to their country of origin.”

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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