National Immigration Law Center
Sign up for email updates.
Sen. Jeff Sessions & Workers

Compose

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 27, 2014

CONTACT
Adela de la Torre, 213-674-2832, delatorre@nilc.org

NILC: Sen. Sessions Stands Against U.S. Workers

Alabama senator’s new “concern” for working people used to attack aspiring citizens

WASHINGTON — In a commentary published by USA Today, Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-AL, again pits U.S. workers against aspiring citizens, falsely contending that American workers would be hurt by commonsense immigration reform.

Not only has Sessions’s old and tired argument been soundly rejected in recent economic studies showing the nation and his home state would benefit from immigration reform that includes a road to earned citizenship, his statement is hypocritical, given his long record of opposing legislation and programs designed to help hardworking Americans.

National Immigration Law Center Executive Director Marielena Hincapié issued the following statement regarding the senator’s latest attack against immigrants:

“Our nation’s economy is growing stronger because of the contributions of all U.S. workers, and they deserve our respect. Unfortunately, Senator Sessions is again driving a political wedge between immigrants and their native-born coworkers. It is undeniable that the false choice Sessions posits is due first and foremost to his ardent opposition to modernizing our federal immigration laws. His actions — particularly on legislation that would pull all workers out of poverty — speak louder than his most recent words.

“Let’s review the Sessions record regarding the very same workers he claims to be concerned about. The senator opposes increasing the federal minimum wage of $7.25 even though the middle class is shrinking and the growing number of workers in low-paying jobs is struggling to make ends meet.

“Senator Sessions has mocked supporters of food stamps, neglecting the fact that 61 percent of homes in his state have children on a federal food program.

“Senator Sessions also has opposed extending the unemployment insurance program for more than one million people, which expired at the end of last year. In another example of class warfare, he pits the benefits of the unemployed and veterans against the families of five million children — mostly Latino and U.S. citizens — by proposing restrictions to the Child Tax Credit, a proven and effective anti-poverty program.

“Spanish-speakers commonly remind us to ‘tell me who you associate with, and I’ll tell you who you are.’ Sen. Sessions has shown that he associates with those who would plunge all families — regardless of where they were born — into poverty. His newfound concern for workers is simply another attempt to advance a longstanding anti-immigrant and anti-worker agenda.” 

# # #