Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) predicted a “strong vote” on his 119-page amendment to the immigration reform bill this evening, a border security compromise offered by Corker and Sen. John Hoeven (R-N.D.) in an effort to move the package forward.
“I cannot imagine any senator that is serious about border security being opposed to this amendment. I mean these are the things that we have been striving for for years to have implemented,” Corker said this morning on Fox. “So, why somebody who cares about border security would not support this amendment would be beyond me. I think we’re going to get a strong vote this evening, because people are beginning to see that this is the case.”
Corker further called his amendment “the strongest border amendment I can imagine being in place along the border.”
“What we’ve done in this amendment is made it very tangible, 20,000 border patrol agents, trained and deployed on the border. Another 350 miles of fence, which Republicans have been pushing for for years. And the entry-exit visa program in place, in place. E- verify in place. $4 billion of technology that the border patrol has been asking for for years has to be deployed and in place. We’ve put those tangible triggers in this bill. Again, if you’re serious about border security you would vote for this amendment,” he added.
Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas), whose own attempt to strengthen border security in the immigration bill was called a “poison pill” by Senate Democrats, said he will not be voting for Corker-Hoeven.
“Fixing our broken immigration system is an important issue, one that will affect millions of individuals and institutions across our country. I cannot support an amendment cobbled together at the eleventh hour that doubles the border patrol without knowing how much it will cost or whether it is even the right strategy,” Cornyn said today.
“Unfortunately this measure still omits a real trigger or objective measure to see if the proposed strategy is working. At a time when the trust deficit with the federal government is so huge, we do not need more promises from the government – we need measureable results.”
Cornyn called the amendment the “same tired approach of crafting a piece of legislation that does nothing more than throw money at the problem.”
“I believe a carefully-crafted effort like my RESULTS amendment, written based on the needs of law enforcement and requiring measureable results, is the right solution to finally securing our border,” he said.
Corker said his amendment “doesn’t address some of the other provisions of the bill that people have concerns about.”
“I went to get a hamburger Saturday night in my neighborhood and everybody there was concerned about border security,” the Tennessee Republican said. “If you’re concerned about border security this amendment is one you support. There may be other issues in the bill you don’t like but certainly it would not be this amendment.”