Rep. Adriano Espaillat (NY-13) released the following statement in response to the Raise Act, proposed earlier today by Republican Senators Tom Cotton (AR) and David Perdue (GA).
“The anti-immigration bill introduced earlier today by Donald Trump and Republican Senators Tom Cotton and David Perdue essentially targets immigrants not only by their race but based on their ability to pay,” said Rep. Adriano Espaillat. “America is the land of opportunity, not based on a person’s wealth or some preconceived notion of their ability to achieve.
“This is the same hateful, profiling and divisive rhetoric we have witnessed repeatedly from Donald Trump since his taking office – no surprise here, but shame on Senator Cotton of Arkansas and Senator David Perdue of Georgia and relative of Perdue Farms, whose respective states rely heavily on an immigrant workforce that drives their state agriculture industry accounting for billions to their state economies on an annual basis.
“In a report previously released by the USDA, more than 70 percent of America’s farm workers are foreign-born and half of those individuals are undocumented. The parameters that would be established by this senseless piece of legislation would block immigrant farm laborers, low-income immigrants, as well as immigrants with family members in the United States, from a legal pathway to citizenship.
“The Raise Act is not the RIGHT answer, and I implore my Republican colleagues to work with Democrats once and for all to find better solutions to address immigration in our country.”