GOP-led House clears way for illegals in military

By Cheryl Chumley

Democrats are pressing to let illegal immigrants serve in the U.S. military.

A Democrat-sponsored campaign to let illegals serve in the U.S. military is winding through the House via an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act.

The amendment, sponsored by Democratic Rep. Ruben Gallego from Arizona, puts Defense Secretary Ashton Carter at the helm of deciding whether those already approved for deferred deportation – under President Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program – are also eligible to serve in America’s military.

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Gallego said the amendment was a no-brainer – that it “shouldn’t be a controversial issue,” the Daily Signal reported.

He went on: “The secretary of defense has the authority to deem what is in the national interest of the United States and all we are asking is for him to consider allowing DACA recipients who meet the criteria and want to serve, into our military for that same reason.”

The Daily Signal reported Gallego, who’s a veteran of the Iraq war, said “this amendment is about defense and what is in the best interest of our nation and our military,” and “what matters is the quality and commitment of the people you serve with, not their immigration status.”

Not all in the House, which is controlled by Republicans, see the amendment in the same light.

Republican Rep. Steve King from Iowa called it an “amnesty amendment” and said it’s “disappointing” a bill that’s supposed to “keep this nation safe from its enemies at a time of war” is instead being used to push a political agenda, the Daily Signal reported.

“The amendment encourages the secretary of defense to find ways to enlist illegal granted amnesty under the president’s illegal and unconstitutional Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals into the armed services,” King said, the news outlet reported. “This policy would provide a fast track to citizenship for those accepted into a program Congress has voted to defund three times. … It is the wrong policy on the wrong bill at the worst time.”

The amendment comes at a time when other media have reported the Pentagon ratcheting its recruitment of illegals. Since January, the Pentagon’s enlisted 81 illegal immigrants who came to the United States as children and were therefore eligible for Obama’s DACA program, the Hill reported.

More have since signed up, and the Pentagon put the number of available military slots for DACA participants at 5,000 by October.

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