West Virginia 3rd District Congressman Nick Rahall is taking a careful look at proposals in Washington which address the growing problem of illegal immigration in the United States.  

President Obama recently spoke about his plan toward addressing the problem.  A bi-partisan coalition in the Senate is pushing a similar idea, but is yet to introduce it as a bill.

“It appears to be a proposal only and not anything written in legislative language,” said Rahall. “This proposal, the core of which coupled with the Obama proposal, appears to smack in some ways of amnesty, which I oppose.”

Rahall has long fought amnesty as a solution.  He says it’s unfair to reward millions of illegal aliens now in the U.S. for breaking the law.    He fears the measure puts them at the front of the line for citizenship status, all of the programs enjoyed by Americans, and threatens American jobs.   Rahall calls the jobs threat the most critical element of amnesty.

“What I do not want to see is a reward for illegal behavior,”  said Rahall. “I do not want to see more illegal immigration in the future.”

Rahall says legislation in 1986 was supposed to stem the tide of illegals coming across the border and just the opposite happened.  He says border security has improved under President Obama and the nation is doing a better job, but hasn’t reached the level it needs to be to have the proper security.

“Number one here, we have to secure the borders lets not forget that above all else,” he said. “And we have to enforce existing law upon our employers.”

Rahall realizes the difficulty of the situation.  He said you cannot expect to deport 11-million people and you can’t put them in jail.  Therefore, he acknowledges something needs to be done.  He advocates a “path to citizenship” which places those now in the country illegally in line with so many others who are here.    If a bill truly presents the path to citizenship, forces immigrants to abide by the rules, and secures the borders he might consider supporting the legislation.

Rahall, whose grandparents immigrated to the United States from Lebanon, isn’t opposed to immigration, but he said it needs to be done in the proper manner and according to a rigid set of rules.

“Past generations including my forefathers obeyed the law,” said Rahall. “They abided by our immigration rules.”


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  • Nona

    I am shocked at the words of Rahall, but delighted to here it. I am a conserv. dem. I know there needs to be a solution to the problem of illegals. All of our families are immigrats. We are a melding pot of all who wanted a better life. I am thankful of all the different countries who want to come to the USA for more. Just do it legally with immigration.

  • WVCitizen

    Rahall is talking like he is running for senate against "take no position" Capito

  • ShinnstonGuy

    It's so easy to make cut and dry immigration comments when you live in Southern WV. How many immigrants are down there anyway? Head over to DC or anywhere on the East Coast and you will find that without these folks life would stop. The "regular Americans" won't work at McDonald's, clean toilets, or build houses.

    • Nona

      We have problems with immigration here in WV. I see it all the time. I have worked a several fast food resturants and there was not one iimmigrat in sight,
      Yes I do agree that most Americans do think, they are better than to work in service industry. We are all service workers in our job. From a technician or programmer or
      governorand even president. We all do services for a person or a company.

  • Geno

    90% of immigrations problems could be solved by enforcing our present laws and the other 10% by securing our borders. If we raised the penalty of hiring a illegal to 25,000 dollars, per illegal and enforced it, you can be sure that they would be very,very few hired, and the one's are here would half to leave because very few would hire them . At this date they are claiming 11,000,000 which I doubt, it is more like 20,000,000. If the proposed immigration law is passed, there be will millions getting on medicaid and welfare programs, because once the new law takes effect, local or federal governments will not will not follow who is entitled to the programs, because of profiling and other useful civic laws which are very useful for the law beaker. It is passed time for the ameican people to stand up and say no more, laws applied to all.

  • wvman75

    It seems more like we are permitting our nation to be taken over by infiltrators who don't even have to engage us militarily. We are just giving it away. Bet the Russians wish they had thought of this tactic.

  • wvman75

    Just think where we'd be if our ineffectual government had actually enforced the law and prevented those 11 million from getting here in the first place. Or had immediately deported them when they first got here? We wouldn't be faced with this problem now.

    No reward for breaking the law.

  • Roger

    The Congress can pass all the laws they want. The President will pick and choose which ones he agrees with and enforce those. His compliant court will not interfere with the decision of the King.

  • WV Patriot

    I wholeheartedly agree with Rahall. The first act these so called immigrants performed on U.S. soil was illegal. So why would we reward them? Deport all of them and make them apply just like all of the law abiding immigrants. End of story.