Yesterday, the four "tigers," Senators Jeff Sessions, Mike Lee, Ted Cruz and Rand Paul stood tall in opposition to the Continuing Resolution negotiated by Capitol Hill’s establishment Republican leaders and, although they lost the final vote, they left us with some hope the national Republican Party can still be called back to conservative principles.
Earlier this week Senator Jeff Sessions set the stage for a showdown on Obama’s deferred action for childhood arrivals (DACA) and the rest of Obama’s lawless immigration policy with a great address in which he said “the entire Senate Democratic Congress has surrendered the jobs, wages, and livelihoods of their constituents to a group of special interests meeting in secret at the White House. They are surrendering them to executive actions that will foist on the nation what Congress has refused to pass and the American people have rejected. They are plotting at the White House to move forward with Executive action no matter what the people think and no matter what Congress—through the people's House—has decided. “ (link to the full text of Senator Sessions’ truly awesome address at the end of this article)
Sessions, Lee and Cruz then engaged Democrats in an epic battle over funding for DACA and executive amnesty as debate on the CR proceeded. (Hat tip to Brietbart’s Tony Lee for the best summary of the debate available on the web)
"What about what's in the interest of the American people?" Senator Sessions asked. "America is not an oligarchy. The masters of the universe... don't get to meet at the White House and decide how to run this country."
He noted that when the "American people learned what was in the Senate amnesty bill and guest worker bill that doubled the number of guest workers, for which every single Senate Democrat voted, the people said 'no, no, no.'"
"So I have a message today to all the special interests, the global elites, the activists, the cynical vote-counting politicians, plotters that are meeting in secret at the White house, and this message is this: You don't get to sit in a room and rewrite the laws of this United states of America. No, sir. Congress writes the laws," Sessions said. "You may not be... used to people telling you 'no,' but I'm telling you 'no' today."
Sessions said that it is "critical that our Senate Democrats are willing to say 'no,' too, today when we vote."
Sessions also had a message for the American people: "You have been right from the beginning. You have justly demanded that our borders be controlled, our laws enforced and that, at long last, immigration policy serves the needs of our own people first."
"For this virtuous and legitimate demand, you have been demeaned, even scorned by the governing class," he continued.
Sessions mocked the "cosmopolitan elite" who think "they know so much" and "want you to believe that your concerns are somehow illegitimate, that you are wrong for being worried about your jobs or your schools or your hospitals or your communities or your national security."
"These elite citizens of the world speak often of their concern about people living in poverty overseas and yet they turn a blind eye to the poverty and suffering in their own country. They don't want you to speak up either," he said. "They don't want you to be heard. They don't want you to feel you have a vote, but you do have a voice, American people. And your message is being heard. And I'm delivering that message to the senate today."
As Breitbart’s Tony Lee reported, Sessions, Cruz and Mike Lee came one vote short of forcing Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) to allow amendments to the continuing resolution and bring up a vote on the House bill that would defund Obama's future executive amnesty. Obama, after delaying his executive amnesty to help Senate Democrats retain control of the Senate, has promised he would act on executive amnesty by the end of the year.
Lee had concerns similar to Sessions’ and noted that the continuing resolution would fund "any other executive amnesty the president may choose to implement illegally." He said that the most important thing Obama can do to stop the crisis at the border and the exploitation of illegal immigrant juveniles is to end the Deferred Action program.
"He also needs to involve an effort to resist the temptation to further expand DACA to millions of additional adults," Lee said.
Lee also said that "by announcing to the world that he will not enforce our nation's laws," Obama is only "encouraging hundreds of thousands of children and adults to make a very dangerous journey to the U.S. illegally."
"He's encouraging families to pay coyotes controlled by drug cartels thousands of dollars to smuggle their children into this country," Lee concluded.
“I cannot vote to empower our lawless president to continue his plans that threaten the economy and our national security,” said Sen. Cruz. “The Continuing Resolution funds Obama’s Amnesty, it funds Obamacare, and it funds military operations in Syria that are not authorized by Congress and are dependent on unreliable actors in the region.”
“I have offered several amendments to make America more free, strong, and safe, but the sad fact of the matter is that Democratic Majority Leader Harry Reid’s do-nothing Senate refuses even to allow vote on them,” said Sen. Cruz.
“Given that this Continuing Resolution does nothing to secure the border, give Americans any relief from Obamacare, or commit President Obama to a clear strategy against ISIS that protects U.S. interests, I cannot in good conscience vote for the Continuing Resolution," said Sen. Cruz. "It is my fervent hope that Americans will speak loud and clear in the next few months, elect a new Senate majority, and give the new Congress a strong mandate to reverse the disastrous decline orchestrated by President Obama and the Senate Democrats."
Senator Paul said before the Thursday vote that there should be a separate vote on the authorization to aid Syrian rebels, but Senate Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.) objected leaving the vote to in essence go to war in Syria as a minor part of a short term Continuing Resolution.
"The inescapable irony is that someday the arms we supply would be used against us, or Israel," Paul said on the floor Thursday. "It is also ludicrous to believe that we know where all of the money, arms and ammunition will end up, or who will end up benefitting from these shipments."
Ted Cruz echoed Paul’s argument that weapons given to rebels could wind up in hands of terrorist groups in Syria.
Where were GOP “leaders” during that debate? Nowhere to be found, that’s where.
Sure, some of them may have voted for the positions of Sessions, Cruz, Lee and Paul once or twice, but in the end, while Sessions, Cruz, Lee and Paul led the floor fight and were all to vote “NAY” on the CR, the Republican “leaders” of the Senate, such as Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, Minority Whip John Cornyn and Senate Republican Conference Chairman John Thune all voted “YEA” and were all but absent from the debate, leaving the four tigers as the defacto Republican spokesmen for conservative principles.
Here’s a link to Senator Jeff Sessions awesome address on executive amnesty and the destruction illegal immigration has wrought on the American middle class.