The News with Sen. Cruz - September 12, 2014
This week, we remember all those who lost their lives on September 11, 2001 — most, innocent victims, many, who willingly gave their lives to rescue others — their families, the heroes, and all those who continue to keep us safe today.
As we lift them up in prayer, we also face new threats as ISIS expresses desire to kill more Americans. We must be vigilant and do everything within our power to protect our national security interests. That starts with securing the border.
It is our duty to protect our citizens from the potential of terrorist infiltration, and I will keep working to do so. Please keep reading for an update on the latest in the Senate.
All the best,
Sen. Cruz Responds to President Obama’s ISIS Address
On Wednesday, Sen. Cruz responded to the President’s remarks on his agenda to combat ISIS. He also discussed his plan to stop ISIS in more detail in a CNN op-ed published this week.
"Tonight's speech was disappointing, but not surprising. The President's approach to ISIS has been – and remains – fundamentally unserious,” Sen. Cruz said.
He continued, "To defeat ISIS and keep America safe, we should not seek to create more Yemens or Somalias. Instead, we need a Commander in Chief who articulates a specific military objective tethered directly to defending U.S. national security. We did not see that tonight.
"We should destroy ISIS altogether, using overwhelming airpower to ensure they cannot bring jihad to America.
"We should also secure our Southern border, so it is not vulnerable to terrorist infiltration, and pass the legislation that I have introduced to strip any U.S. citizens who choose to fight with ISIS of their citizenship. No ISIS terrorist should be able to return to America with a U.S. passport."
Sen. Cruz also called upon President Obama to come to Congress to receive authorization, as required by the Constitution.
Sen. Cruz Urges Senate to Stop President Obama’s Amnesty
On Wednesday, Sen. Cruz requested unanimous consent to pass H.R. 5272, a bill that would effectively end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and prevent President Obama from taking executive actions to illegally expand amnesty in the future, and unfortunately Democrats objected.
“All 55 Democrats bear responsibility for President Obama’s amnesty. I understand the President thinks it’s politically clever to delay the amnesty until after the election, but I have real faith in the American people, that it’s too clever by half,” Sen. Cruz said. “There is not a single Democrat in this chamber speaking out for eliminating the President’s authority to grant amnesty. Clarity in elections, enabling the American people to hold all of us accountable, is a very good thing.”
Sen. Cruz continued, “The senate majority leader today seems to view his principal obligation as protecting his members from hard votes. I'd like to point out, the concept of a hard vote only makes sense if there is a disconnect between what a Senator says at home and what he or she does in Washington.”
On Tuesday, Sen. Cruz held a press conference with Sens. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) and Mike Lee (R-UT) along with U.S. Representatives Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), Mo Brooks (R-AL), John Carter (R-TX), Louie Gohmert (R-TX), Pete Olson (R-TX), Lamar Smith (R-TX), Roger Williams (R-TX), Ted Yoho (R-FL) to encourage the Senate to take action to vote on the House immigration bill, and prevent Obama from expanding amnesty.
“The House of Representatives stayed here and did its work, and the only reason that DACA legislation hasn’t passed into law is because Harry Reid and Senate Democrats' refused to vote on it.” Sen. Cruz said. “Amnesty ensures that tens of thousands and hundreds of thousands of little boys and little girls will continue to be victimized, to be physically abused, to be sexually abused. Amnesty is not compassionate, it is not humane. It is exacerbating a crisis at the border. It is lawless and it is wrong.”
Prior to the August recess, Sen. Cruz worked with his Republican colleagues on legislation that would solve the crisis at our Southern border. He introduced the Protect Children and Families Through the Rule of Law Act, portions of which will prevent President Obama from expanding amnesty to millions of more immigrants who come to the U.S. illegally, as he has suggested he plans to do after the 2014 midterm elections.
Sen. Cruz Introduces Bill to Prevent Americans who Join ISIS from Returning to United States
On Monday, Sen. Cruz filed the Expatriate Terrorist Act (E.T.A.) of 2014 to prevent Americans who join ISIS from returning to the United States. He spoke on the Senate floor, and below you will find key excerpts.
“We should take common sense steps to make fighting for, or supporting ISIS, an affirmative renunciation of American citizenship. We know today that there are over a hundred Americans who have joined ISIS, who have taken up arms alongside the Jihadists, along with thousands of others from the European Union,” Sen. Cruz said.
He continued, “That is why I have today filed legislation, the Expatriate Terrorist Act of 2014, which would amend the existing statute governing renunciation of United States citizenship to designate fighting for a hostile foreign government or foreign terrorist organization as an affirmative renunciation of citizenship. By fighting for ISIS, U.S. citizens have expressed their desire to become citizens of the Islamic State, and that cannot and will not peacefully coexist with remaining American citizens. The desire to become a citizen of a terrorist organization that has expressed a desire to wage war on the American people, has demonstrated a brutal capacity to do so, murdering American civilians on the global stage and promising to bring that Jihad home to America. We should not be facilitating their efforts by allowing fighters fighting alongside ISIS to come back to America with American passports and walk freely in our cities to carry out unspeakable acts of terror. It is my hope that the legislation I'm introducing today will earn support on both sides of the aisle, that we will see this body come together and say while there are many partisan issues that divide us, when it comes to protecting United States citizens from acts of terror, we are all as one.”
Sen. Cruz Objects to Democrats’ Attempt to Repeal Free Speech Protections
On Tuesday, Sen. Cruz spoke on the Senate floor in opposition to the bill Democrats introduced earlier this week to amend the free speech provisions of the First Amendment.
“If this proposal were to pass, its effects would be breathtaking. It would be the most massive intrusion on civil liberties and expansion of federal government power in modern times,” Sen. Cruz said. “According to our Democratic friends, the new First Amendment would regulate the raising and spending of money by candidates and others to influence elections. The First Amendment is not about ‘reasonable’ speech. The idea that elected politicians would seek to arrogate power to themselves to censor the citizens is an anathema to who we are as a country.”
In his remarks, Sen. Cruz asked, should Congress have the power to ban movies, to ban books, or to ban organizations from speaking about politics? He argued that this amendment will destroy the free speech protections enshrined in the First Amendment by limiting individuals, corporations, and citizen groups’ free speech while insulating politicians from the very criticism that has always been essential to democracy.
Sen. Cruz concluded, “We have not seen a single Democrat have the courage to speak out against this abominable provision. There was a time not long ago when there was bipartisan agreement on questions of civil liberties. In 1997, Democrats attempted a similar amendment, and that lion of the Left Ted Kennedy stood up and said, ‘In the entire history of the Constitution we have never amended the Bill of Rights, and now is not the time to start.’ Where are the Ted Kennedys? When did Democrats abandon the Bill of Rights? When did Democrats abandon civil liberties?”
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