‘Amnesty’ Republican Encounters Resistance at the Border



Rep. Will Hurd, a Texas Republican whose sprawling district spans a third of the U.S.-Mexico border, joined Democrats this week in voting to grant amnesty to more than 2 million illegal aliens. It wasn’t the first time.

Since 2017, Hurd has repeatedly cosponsored amnesty legislation. He also has voted to increase H-2B visas for unskilled foreign workers and supports other imported-labor initiatives.

On the “nay” side, Hurd voted against the “Securing America’s Future Act of 2018,” to require that all federal, state and local agencies comply with the provisions of the U.S. Immigration and Nationality Act. He voted to block President Donald Trump’s emergency order for more wall funding, and even branded the border crisis a “myth.”

While posing for selfies with adoring recipients of DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals), the maverick congressman basks in glowing reviews from liberal media outlets. A portrait of him sitting in the middle of a deserted South Texas road graces the current cover of Texas Monthly magazine.

In the run-up to his 2018 re-election campaign, Hurd tacked briefly to the enforcement side when he voted to withhold funds from sanctuary cities. But the Republican’s renewed support for amnesty this week brought him back to more familiar territory, where his voting record virtually mirrors that of former Democratic congressman and current presidential aspirant Beto O’Rourke next door.

Thanks to – or in spite of – his quixotic positioning on immigration, Hurd won re-election in the heavily Hispanic 23rd Congressional District. His razor-thin victory (926 votes, a 0.5 percent margin) over first-time candidate Gina Ortiz Jones was far from a mandate, however.

Hurd’s glib reference to the border crisis as a “myth” has stoked conservative anger, without necessarily earning him any Democrat votes. That potentially leaves him in an electoral no man’s land. “People who say the border crisis is a ‘myth’ don’t live anywhere near it,” observed Alma Arredondo-Lynch, one of Hurd’s declared GOP challengers for 2020. In fact, a lot of them live in Washington, D.C.

About Author

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Bob Dane, the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR)'s Executive Director, has been with FAIR since 2006. His deep belief is that immigration is the most transformational determinant of where we are heading as a nation and that our policies must be reformed in the public interest. Over many years on thousands of radio, TV and print interviews, Bob has made the case that unless immigration is regulated and sensibly reduced, it will be difficult for America to reduce unemployment, increase wages, improve health care and education and heighten national security. Prior to joining FAIR, Bob spent twenty years in network radio, marketing and communications after an earlier career in policy and budgeting within the Reagan Administration. Bob has a degree from George Mason University in Public Administration and Management.

5 Comments

  1. avatar

    I’ll Put It Blunt

    Mexico is currently more concerned about the Central American invasion than our Open Border Party (OBP) Rhinos. They’re lazy “do-nothings” expecting America to fail no matter what we do…they’re cowards and liars too..

  2. avatar

    Not at all surprising that Hurd voted to block the president’s emergency order on border all funding. In my view, Hurd’s actions are yet another argument for term limits. US representatives’ and senators’ actions affect all Americans, not just those in their own districts or states. Yet the people of 434 districts — or, with the Senate, the people of 49 states — can’t vote these people out.