Three things are clear after reading U.S. Rep. Debbie Lesko’s June 27 opinion piece accusing Democrats of not wanting to address the crisis at the border: her willingness to mislead voters on the facts, her willingness to blame others for Congress’ inability to address the problem, and proving she has no solution herself. The result is her complicity in making sure that efforts of both parties to reform our country’s immigration laws fail.
Lesko wasted no time misstating facts. In her first sentence she purposefully equates people legally seeking asylum with those whose entry is clearly criminal. She is on record complaining that we should only allow in those who follow our law but now criticizes those who attempt to do so. She fails to mention that changes to US government policy effectively push asylum seekers away from ports of entry, which, itself contributes significantly to the crisis.
Lesko complains Democrats aren’t serious about solving the humanitarian crisis or increasing border security while failing to admit her own lack of seriousness. Has she forgotten about her “no” vote on the Republican-sponsored, bi-partisan “Border Security and Immigration Reform Act of 2018?” That bill, HR 6136 would have provided additional funds for border security and facilities. Why did she vote against something she says she’s for?
While complaining Democrats have done “absolutely nothing” about the border, she doesn’t mention in her June 27 op-ed that she voted against a Democratic-authored bill HR 3401 that would provide $4.5B in emergency funding for enforcement and humanitarian support at the southern border two days earlier. When a weaker HR 3401 came back from the Senate for a vote, and knowing that version put families at higher risk and failed to hold government employees accountable, Lesko voted for it anyway.
Without naming the bill so voters can look it up, Lesko falsely implies the American Dream and Promise Act grants “amnesty” to 2.5M “illegal immigrants without any border security provisions or reforms to our loose immigration laws that incentivize illegal immigration.” The bill was never meant to be a comprehensive immigration reform bill. Its single purpose was to support current laws and provide a pathway to citizenship for DACA recipients and other, otherwise worthy immigrants; something 87 percent of Americans support.
She’s complaining about wanting to solve a problem that policies she endorses have made worse. She’s complaining Democrats are unwilling to address a problem or work with Republicans and then votes against bi-partisan bills that do both. She’s misstating the purpose of a law nearly 9 out of 10 Americans support. Anyone see a pattern here?
No one should hold their breath waiting for her immigration bill. Why? Because given previous opportunities to do so, all she has done is complain, criticize and pass the buck. That’s who she is.
The main reason government in Washington is so dysfunctional is because hyper-partisan politicians like Debbie Lesko are careless with the truth and place party loyalty and ideology above the best interests of the country. We won’t change Washington until we change the people we send there.
Election Day isn’t the only 2020 thing she should worry about. Hindsight is also 2020.
Michael Muscato is a lifelong resident of the West Valley, a successful small business owner, and candidate for Congress in CD8.