Senators Criticized Misleading Benghazi Talking Points, Now Can’t Get Their Own Right

Three Republican Senators who have spent nearly a year railing against the Obama State Department for misleading the public with inaccurate talking points have now resorted to remarkably similar tactics when promoting an amnesty for 12 million illegal aliens.

Whether or not you believe the Obama administration rewrote the Benghazi talking points to deceive Americans, there’s no denying that Republican Senators Kelly Ayotte (N.H.), Lindsey Graham (S.C.), and John McCain (Ariz.) are now engaging in extraordinarily similar strategies to push the Senate amnesty bill.

On news programs, in press releases and letters to constituents, and on the Senate floor, these public officials are deliberately misrepresenting the facts about the Gang of Eight bill even though their talking points have been widely exposed.

Sen. Ayotte’s recent response to a constituent regarding S. 744 is riddled with falsehoods:

  • “Secures the border first” – Illegal aliens are given the right to remain and work in the U.S. six months after enactment of the legislation. And, even green card status and citizenship are not held up for border security.
  • Provides for “more border agents” –There is no requirement that more border agents be added. DHS must only craft a border security plan. There’s nothing dictating what needs to be included.
  • “More fencing” – S. 744 requires the DHS Secretary to submit a fencing “strategy,” but doesn’t actually require that any fencing be built.
  • “Requires all employers to use an employment verification system” – After a lengthy implementation, employers are still not required to verify some “intermittent” workers or any existing employees.
  • Requires illegal aliens to “pay fines” – Waivable by the DHS Secretary. Millions in required fees have already been waived by DHS during Obama’s administrative amnesty for young illegal aliens.
  • And “pay taxes” – Illegal aliens may file taxes but since they are generally low income, they are unlikely to be net contributors to tax revenue and would be eligible for a myriad of credits.
  • “Pass background checks” – How can we be sure? What kind of background checks? A recent Judicial Watch investigation uncovered that DHS suspended full criminal background checks on administrative amnesty applicants in order to keep the process moving as quickly as possible. We could expect more of the same “lean and lite” policy if the Department faced processing amnesty applications from 12 million illegal aliens.

On the Senate floor yesterday, Sen. John McCain falsely claimed S. 744 will:

  • Require illegal aliens to pay back taxes – The bill only requires illegal aliens to pay taxes that the IRS has assessed at the time they apply for registered provisional immigrant (RPI) status. If the IRS had no knowledge that the individual had been working here, there would obviously be no tax liability assessed and the alien has nothing to satisfy for the purpose of getting legal status.
  • Require illegal aliens to learn English – Illegal aliens are not required to learn English when they apply for RPI status and must only show they’re enrolled in a “course of study” when they apply for a green card.
  • Bar criminal aliens from amnestyDHS may waive misdemeanor convictions, gang membership, trafficking in fraudulent documents, DUIs, stalking, child abuse, repeat immigration violations, and domestic violence – to name a few.

And don’t forget Sen. Graham:

  • In the Judiciary Committee mark-up, Graham said: “…this bill, I think, protects the American worker from being displaced.” – 22 million Americans are unemployed or underemployed. S. 744 invites 35 million permanent immigrants over the next 10 years. It also does not require that employers hire Americans first.
  • On CNN in March, Graham claimed the legislation would turn our family-based system “into a merit-based immigration system.” – In fact, less than 10 percent of future immigration under the Gang of Eight bill would be “merit-based” and massive family-based chain migration would continue.

So the question remains, have Sen. Ayotte and her Gang of Eight buddies Graham and McCain failed to read the bill or are they doing exactly what they accuse the Obama administration of doing – misleading the public with inaccurate talking points?

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Content written by Federation for American Immigration Reform staff.


  1. avatar

    Absolutely correct. Any enforcement is only nebulous plans and goals, with targets years down the road, if then.