Sessions to chair immigration

Published 12:00 am Thursday, January 22, 2015

Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., who has been one of the most relentless critics of the Obama administration’s immigration directives, is taking over the Senate’s panel that oversees immigration, reported.

Politico reported Sessions is set to assume the chairmanship of the Senate Subcommittee on Immigration, Refugees and Border Security, giving him a key platform to advance his immigration policies. Sen. David Vitter (R-La.), a new member of the Judiciary Committee, is going to be the panel’s vice chair, the sources said.

Sessions gave up his bid to become the Senate Budget Committee chairman when Sen. Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.) exerted his seniority on that panel. Sessions had been the top Republican on the committee for four years and had been expected to take over the chairmanship until Enzi made his move.

Sessions is well-known for his advocacy of stricter immigration controls and aggressive pushback against Obama’s executive actions on immigration, pushing fellow Republicans toward a more confrontational stance.

Sessions office has not confirmed the appointment, which has not been formally announced. However, after the president’s State of the Union address on Tuesday, the senator issued a statement calling the president’s immigration policy “lawless.”

“On immigration, the president remains wedded to a lawless policy that serves only the interest of an international elite while reducing jobs and benefits for everyday Americans,” he said. “All net employment gains since the recession in 2007 have gone to foreign workers, and yet the president has violated federal law in order to provide work permits to 5 million illegal immigrants–allowing them to take any of the few good jobs that exist. In effect, the president delivered an address tonight to a Congress whose authority he does not recognize and to a public whose votes he has nullified with an imperial edict. Congress must use every tool at its disposal to stop this unlawful edict, end the immigration lawlessness, and reverse our slide towards congressional irrelevance.”