Donald Trump’s shocking anti-immigrant language blasted by first gay immigrant congressman

Rep. Robert Garcia
Rep. Robert Garcia Photo: Screenshot

Rep. Robert Garcia (D-CA), the first out gay immigrant ever elected to Congress, called out Donald Trump’s anti-immigrant rhetoric in a moving speech during a Republican-led hearing on issues at the U.S.-Mexico border on Thursday.

The morning hearing — entitled “Voices for the Victims: The Heartbreaking Reality of the Mayorkas Border Crisis” and held by the House Committee on Homeland Security — was part of Republicans’ continued efforts to impeach Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas in an attempt to discredit the administration of President Joe Biden.

The hearing’s witnesses consisted of a constitutional legal scholar who claimed there are grounds to impeach Mayorkas for failing to address undocumented immigration at the U.S.-Mexico border, an Arizona sheriff who complained about crimes happening at the border, and two mothers: one who blamed Mayorkas for her daughter’s fentanyl overdose, and another who blamed him for allowing a Salvadoran MS-13 gang member to enter the U.S. and rape and murder her daughter.

“Our conversation today isn’t about the Constitution or the law. It’s not even about securing the border. The [Republican House] majority is not interested in solutions,” Garcia said during his speech.

He then brought up former President Donald Trump’s recent comment that immigrants “poison the blood of our country” and its echoing of fascist rhetoric used by Nazi leader Adolf Hitler. Garcia also noted that some Republicans claim that immigrants can’t assimilate into U.S. culture and that “extremists here in Congress also continue to push issues like the great replacement theory,” a racist and antisemitic conspiracy theory that Jews, immigrants, people of color, and Democrats want to “replace” white Americans.

“We should be clear immigrants are some of the most patriotic and hardworking people there are in this country,” Garcia said. “I’m an immigrant…. I am a member of Congress. And so I think it’s very un-American to attack and demonize migrants in the way that some of this majority continue do. Immigrants aren’t here to poison or victimize the American people.”

He then pointed to FBI crime data that showed that both undocumented and documented immigrants are much less likely to commit crimes or be incarcerated than native-born American citizens and that border towns have 15% less crime than many major cities.

“We want real solutions to the federal crisis,” Garcia said. “But we need to understand the problems we’re trying to solve, need solutions, legislation — not impeachment of the Secretary [Mayorkas] and certainly not impeachment of President Biden.”

“Republicans on my committee say immigrants ‘can’t assimilate,'” Garcia wrote on X, sharing part of his speech. “I’m the first gay immigrant in Congress and I’m here to prove them wrong. I’ll always call out their un-American hate.”

Garcia was elected to the House in 2022. He’s the first Peruvian-American ever to be elected to Congress. He was one of four new LGBTQ+ House members elected that year and was sworn in on a copy of a Superman comic book. Since joining Congress, he gave an impassioned tribute to Beyoncé on the House floor and led efforts to oust now-former Rep. George Santos (R-NY).

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