Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano defended the Gang of Eight’s Immigration Bill today at the third hearing on the bipartisan immigration bill:
“These are all commonsense steps that the majority of Americans support,” Napolitano said adding that the bill was a “true milestone, and we look forward to working with you to build on this momentum.”
Napolitano was scheduled to testify at the Senate Judiciary Committee meeting last Friday but was unable to due to the manhunt for the Boston marathon suspects.
Napolitano said the bill would strengthen national security:
“Today, after 10 years of investments in training and equipment and improved information sharing our cities and communities and our nation are stronger, more prepared and engaged and better equipped to address a range if threats. This legislation will build on these gains, strengthening both our overall national security posture and our border security.”
Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) brought up the events in Boston and said it should serve as a cautionary tale:
“The tragic events that occurred in Boston…[serve as] reminders that our immigration system is directly related to our sovereignty and national security matters. I’m advocating that we carefully review the immigration laws and the administration policies in place.”
Napolitano said the FBI was alerted when one of the suspects left the U.S. for Russia in 2011 but mentioned the “matter had been closed” by the time the suspect returned.
This might have had to do with a misspelling of the suspect’s name in the travel document. She said the new immigration bill would actually work to reduce human error.
“The bill will help with this, because it requires that passports be electronically readable.”
The Immigration bill will indeed require passports be swiped electronically and not entered manually, which is the way it’s currently done.
More on Immigration Reform:
- Immigration Reform 2013
- Gang of 8
- Earned Citizenship
- Streamlining Immigration
- Strengthening Border Security
- More Accountability for Employers Hiring Undocumented Immigrants