After receiving support from fifty-nine Democrats, the House successfully passed a bill aimed at deporting illegal aliens who were caught driving under the influence. The measure received a 274-150 vote on Thursday, with the majority of votes coming from the GOP. However, it is worth noting that one hundred fifty Democrats voted against the bill. Representative Barry Moore (R-AL), the bill’s sponsor, expressed his joy and appreciation for its passage through a statement.
“In the United States, someone dies in a crash with an impaired driver every 45 minutes,” Moore said.
“I lost two of my young newlywed constituents to an illegal immigrant driving under the influence of alcohol.”
The proposed legislation aims to automatically deport and permanently ban individuals who are in the U.S. illegally and have been charged with a DUI. This comes in response to a recent incident where an illegal border crosser from El Salvador, who had previously been deported four times, was involved in a fatal car crash while under the influence of alcohol.
The issue of immigration and border security has been a long-standing concern for Republicans, and it has gained even more urgency this year as polls indicate that likely 2024 voters are increasingly worried about the current state of affairs. President Joe Biden, a Democrat, has also been addressing the border situation more forcefully, although his actions have yet to yield significant results. He has recently pledged to close the U.S.-Mexico border if given the authority through legislation that is currently being negotiated between the Senate and the White House. Speaker Mike Johnson, a Republican from Louisiana, has made the border a central focus since assuming his position in October.
He led a delegation of over 60 House Republicans to Eagle Pass, Texas, and has consistently criticized Biden for policies that he believes have contributed to the migrant crisis. House GOP leaders are also planning to hold a chamber-wide vote on impeaching Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, who has been involved in the border negotiations between the Senate and the White House.
The White House and its supporters have accused Republicans of using the border issue for political gain and have emphasized the need for Johnson to approve more funding and authority for the president in order to address the crisis effectively.
“They don’t want to solve the problem, they want to keep the problem going as a campaign issue,” Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-NY) said during the debate on the DUI bill.
“So don’t come up here and talk about the problems on the southern border if you won’t give the president any means to deal with it.”
Moore argued, “They made it a campaign issue when Biden came in on day one.”
Biden was blamed for exacerbating the border crisis through the revocation of Trump administration measures such as the “Remain In Mexico” policy.
“Biden has every tool in the toolbox to shut the southern border down… we don’t need more money, we need to apply the laws that are on the books,” Moore said.