U.S. Congressman LOUIE GOHMERT: Proudly Serving the First District of Texas

 

In The News

No immigration reform without wall, Gohmert says

By William Patrick, Palestine Herald-Press

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Washington, September 20, 2017 | comments

U.S. Rep. Louie Gohmert, (R-TX), told the Herald-Press on Monday that Congress should forget about immigration reform, including the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, (DACA), until a wall is built on the southern border.

“There's no time like the present to secure our border,” Gohmert said in an interview. The massive project can be accomplished, he said, despite the costs, estimated at up to $20 billion, and the country's recent natural disasters, which will cost the federal government billions of dollars.

“Whenever there's talk in D.C. about legalization programs, like now, there is a surge of illegal immigration,” said the representative of Texas' First District, which includes Tyler. “If the border is not secure, I hope we don't take up immigration reform.”

 
 

Gohmert visited Palestine Monday to speak to Anderson County Republicans, appearing at the “Make America Great Again” event, a phrase coined by President Trump during his 2016 campaign.

Of the nearly 800,000 DACA applicants awaiting reform that would allow them a path to citizenship, Texas is second only to California in the number of DACA recipients at nearly 125,000.

Trump has made no official statement regarding the priority of a border wall over the status of DACA recipients or immigration reform. Even so, Gohmert, vice chairman of the Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism and Homeland Security said he, unlike other republicans, speaks for the President's agenda on a proposed border wall.

“Neither the Speaker of the House [Paul Ryan, (R-WI)] or Mitch McConnel, (R-KY), want a wall,” Gohmert said. “They didn't run on the things that Trump stands for.

“Trump said he wants to drain the swamp [of bureaucracy] in Washington. He also needs to drain the swamp in his administration.”

Gohmert said a southern border wall would benefit Mexico as well as the United States.

“We have 70,000 people crossing illegally into Mexico from the U.S. every year, looking for illegal drugs,” he said. “The best thing we could do is be a good neighbor to Mexico by cutting off these customers.”

Doing so, Gohmert said, would not only save U.S. law enforcement an enormous amount of money, but also “allow Mexico to take its place as one of the top-10 economies in the world.”

A Tea-Party advocate, Gohmert said believes the President is doing the best he can, considering the people around him who do not advance his agenda.

Gohmert is also passionate about U.S. health care.

“Just two weeks ago, I was pushing Speaker of the House Paul Ryan to do something to repeal Obamacare,” Gohmert said. “He told me that he is working hard behind the scenes, but I told him his efforts had to be out front.”

One of the biggest criticisms about the Affordable Care Act, (Obamacare), is that citizens are mandated to carry health insurance, or face a penalty of $695 to $2,085, or 2.5% of their income.

“We plan on eliminating the mandate,” Gohmert told the Herald-Press. “Of course, if it passes the House, the Senate has to approve it, or it goes to conference.”

 
 

Conference committees, consisting of U.S. senators and representatives, resolve differences on major bills. Gohmert said he hopes that won't be necessary, and that Congress will pass a bill by the Sept. 30 deadline.

“The President is getting slow-walked through this,” Gohmert said. “It's not the job of politicians to get in front of the President's agenda.”

Gohmert, who is serving his seventh consecutive term, also favors term-limits for both houses of Congress.

“I'm a big fan of term-limits; I took one as a county judge,” Gohmert said. “But, one thing is clear to me: There must also be term-limits on the bureaucrats who have been in Washington for 20 to 25 years.”

Gohmert said he has already talked to his staff about introducing a term-limits bill. He will be up for re-election next year. Mid-term elections take place on Nov. 6, 2018.

Gohmert said he enjoys visiting Palestine. “I spent a lot of time here as a lawyer in the 1980's,” he said. “I'm quite familiar with some of your judges and attorneys. There really are a lot of good folks.”

Gohmert told the Herald-Press that he always appreciates hearing from fellow Texans and from residents of his district. His email can be found at https://gohmert.house.gov

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