Lindsey Graham to Paul Ryan: “Take a Stand” on Immigration

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) (photo credit: Department of Defense via Flickr, CC BY 2.0)
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) (photo credit: Department of Defense via Flickr, CC BY 2.0)

Senator Lindsey Graham aired his frustration with Speaker Paul Ryan yesterday, targeting Ryan’s promise not to push immigration reform until after President Obama leaves office:

“Forget about working with Obama, just take up the bill and vote,” said Graham, pointing out that he’s helped craft three different comprehensive immigration reform bills that have passed the Senate with bipartisan support only to die in the House. “If you don’t like the Senate bill change it, but at least vote. Take a stand.”

Ryan’s promise to avoid immigration reform until 2017 stems from conservative backlash to Obama’s executive actions preventing the deportation of millions of illegal immigrants.  Earlier this week, Ryan said Obama has “proven himself untrustworthy” on the issue.  Graham sympathized, saying Ryan is “very good as an individual” on immigration, but went on to say he thinks this is a bad move that could hurt Republicans in 2016:

“Absolutely I’m frustrated,” he said. “It’s wrong for the House not to take a position on immigration. I think it hurts our party,” he said.

Nick Arnold is a researcher for the American Principles Project.