THESE ARE THE TIMES THAT TRY MEN'S SOULS; Congressional Record Vol. 160, No. 107
(House of Representatives - July 10, 2014)

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[Pages H6101-H6104]
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                              {time}  2130
                THESE ARE THE TIMES THAT TRY MEN'S SOULS

  The SPEAKER pro tempore (Mr. Salmon). Under the Speaker's announced 
policy of January 3, 2013, the gentleman from Texas (Mr. Gohmert) is 
recognized for 15 minutes as the designee of the majority leader.
  Mr. GOHMERT. Mr. Speaker, ``these are the times that try men's 
souls.''
  Having been to the border a couple of weeks ago, going to the border 
tomorrow and next weekend, I know from my experiences there that it is 
a traumatic time for so many. But I keep coming back to what a West 
African told me a few years ago when my wife and I were in West Africa 
with mercy ships, there in the harbor in Togo, caring for people there.
  A number of the West Africans had wanted to meet before I left. They 
knew I was a Member of Congress. And the oldest, a very wise man, after 
we had a lovely time visiting, said, Well, we wanted to meet with you 
so that we could give you a message to take back to Washington. He 
said, we were so excited here in Africa when you elected your first 
black President of the United States. He said, but since that happened, 
we have seen America get weaker and weaker. And basically, he was 
saying that we know, as Christians, where we go when we die. But our 
chance of having peace in this life can only come if America is strong. 
So he implored me to go back and share here in Washington that Africa 
wants a strong America, that Africans who love peace want and need a 
strong America.
  When I was in Nigeria recently visiting with heartbroken, devastated 
mothers of daughters who were kidnapped by radical Islamists, they wept 
as they would talk about their experiences. Three girls who had been 
captured and had been able to escape, their tales of the horrors of 
radical

[[Page H6102]]

Islam were sickening, especially for a father of three girls.
  But again, the message there in Nigeria that was conveyed--different 
people, different ways, different words but, in essence, just as the 
elderly African gentleman had said a few years ago: Please stop getting 
weaker. You are hurting all of us. We need a strong America.
  Mr. Speaker, a strong America means an America that abides by the law 
and does what is talked about throughout the Bible, about being 
impartial and fair. And that means enforcing the law impartially, that 
no matter who you are, we must enforce the law across the board. That 
means, whatever your age, wherever you are coming from, you must abide 
by the laws, just as the people who are American citizens do. It means 
that if we do not keep America strong economically by not spending more 
than we have coming in, have national security through our military and 
through our different departments and branches that are supposed to 
keep us secure, if we don't apply the law across the board and make 
sure that people attempting to come into this country have the law 
impartially enforced, we will not stay strong. We move into that Third 
World category where the law is unfairly enforced. It is enforced 
against different people to different measures.
  And as someone, like me, who has been a judge and has had to look 
civil litigants and felons in the eye and tell them what the law 
required, even at times when I disagreed with the law but I knew it was 
constitutional, I applied the law because it is what must be done to 
keep America strong. Because when we begin to play favorites, we weaken 
America. When we cut our Defense Department just down to the nub and 
require them to do so many things with much less money, we are hurting 
our security. We are not remaining strong.
  When we have a Fed that is creating money--and, as I was told at the 
Fed one day, oh, we can't possibly print all the money we are creating; 
we are just adding digits--they are cheapening the value of the dollar, 
and it will pay a toll someday. That weakens us.
  We have got to abide by the law, and that means the President of the 
United States must do so. It means the Attorney General of the United 
States, the highest-ranking law enforcement officer, as Attorney 
General, must apply the law fairly, not unfairly and unjustly, and 
showing great partiality, as this Attorney General has been doing in 
his coverups, in his aggressively going after political enemies of the 
President, in his refusing and wholly failing and refusing to go after 
the IRS to investigate. It is very clear: the smell gets worse daily 
from those involved in the scandal at the IRS. And this Attorney 
General does nothing.
  The message continues to go out around the world that the once great 
America no longer stands firmly on the Constitution, stands firmly on 
the law, and enforces it across the board.
  The chairman of the Judiciary, the gentleman from Virginia, Bob 
Goodlatte, put together just a little note indicating things that the 
President can do without Congress doing anything more at all, things 
that this administration can do. And as my friend Chairman Goodlatte 
points out, President Obama's policies have caused the crisis at our 
southern border. And he has tools at his disposal to fix it.
  Here are several steps the President can take now to stop the surge 
at the border. Number one, send the strong public message that those 
who enter illegally will be returned. He can use the bully pulpit to 
make clear, you are not coming into the United States illegally. You 
come through our ports of entry, and you must come legally, or you will 
be returned from where you came.
  Some have been coached, apparently--we hear and read--to claim asylum 
once you are here. Well, even under the Wilberforce bill, you don't get 
asylum if you are coming in from a country where you are not at risk.
  Another point from Chairman Goodlatte: Stop abusing prosecutorial 
discretion authority. Over the past 5 years, President Obama and 
administration officials have abused prosecutorial discretion, a tool 
that was meant to give the executive branch flexibility in individual 
cases. Instead, he stretched this authority beyond all recognition to 
shield entire categories of people, not researching individual cases to 
determine whether prosecutorial discretion would require non-
prosecution, just exempting massive numbers of people. That is not 
discretion. That is mass amnesty. And this President has been doing it, 
and it has to stop. The message sent to the world is that if you get in 
the U.S., you will not be deported.
  Stop releasing convicted criminal aliens from detention. Immigration 
and Customs Enforcement--and I don't blame them. I know too many ICE 
agents. They are good people. They want to do the right thing, but they 
have a Commander in Chief that is directing them to do the wrong thing. 
They have released over 36,000 criminal aliens from detention who were 
removed or were in removal proceedings or had been ordered removed. 
That is 36,000 criminal aliens.
  You know, Texas has statistics indicating there have been over 
100,000 criminal aliens responsible for over 600,000 crimes against 
American citizens. And what does this administration do? It protects 
and encourages criminality by failing to enforce the law. Implement 
tougher standards for credible fear claims.
  Apparently, this administration is happy to just accept someone 
saying the words ``credible fear.'' That is not a credible fear.
  They can detain asylum seekers until their claims are proved valid. 
Instead, this administration just gives a slip of paper that people 
coming in illegally think is their ticket to stay in the United States 
illegally. And it makes sense for them to think that because it tells 
them, they must report to a court in the United States at some point in 
the future. How can they report to the court if they don't stay in the 
United States illegally?
  The President can also restore agreements with local law enforcement 
agencies and allow them to enforce immigration laws. That was our 
history. The Supreme Court, which is not concerned about precedent so 
much as they were supposed to be, decided that Arizona had to allow 
lawlessness because this administration was allowing lawlessness.
  The administration can employ diplomatic resources to stop the border 
crisis. Let's look, for example, at these numbers. Well, for fiscal 
year 2014, El Salvador, which appears to be happy with thousands and 
thousands of its people coming illegally through Mexico to America--now 
we read that Mexico is actually complicit with some of these countries 
and is encouraging them, virtually, to come to America illegally. El 
Salvador, for fiscal year 2014, is supposed to get $22,281,000 and for 
fiscal year 2015 is supposed to get $27,600,000.

                              {time}  2145

  We are increasing by $5 million the amount of money--at least the 
administration wants us to. Give $5 million more to El Salvador--for 
what reason? Well, gee, I don't know. About the only thing they are 
known for right now is sending people illegally into the United States.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The gentleman will suspend.
  Seeing no designee of the minority leader seeking recognition, under 
the Speaker's announced policy of January 3, 2013, the gentleman from 
Texas (Mr. Gohmert) is recognized for the remainder of the time until 
10 p.m. as the designee of the majority leader.
  Mr. GOHMERT. So it would seem to reasonable people, reasonable minds 
would think that, if El Salvador is costing America a huge hunk of what 
the President says needs to be $3.7 billion to deal with the crisis 
that El Salvador is helping cause, then perhaps we ought to stop 
sending them money when they are costing us even more money.
  So let's get this right. We are paying El Salvador to cost us 
billions of dollars in return. That doesn't seem to be a very good 
investment.
  How about Guatemala? Gee, fiscal year 2014 has had $65,249,000 
appropriated to be given to Guatemala, and I have been down to the 
border in recent weeks and heard people say they were coming from 
Guatemala. Of course, they don't say, ``We are coming from violence.''
  Violence seems to be down, certainly not up. It is certainly not 
spiking, so it

[[Page H6103]]

makes it clear that the reason that there is a huge spike in people 
rushing to America is because this Obama administration is making clear 
to Central America and South America that, if you come, you get to 
stay.
  Why? Because they are not interested in what words politicians are 
saying here in Washington. They are more interested in what those 
politicians in the Obama administration are doing, and what they are 
doing is allowing hundreds of thousands of people to stay in America 
once they get here illegally.
  For fiscal year 2015, apparently, this administration thinks that 
Guatemala is costing America what this administration says is a need 
for billions of dollars. Gee, they are doing such a good job of 
flooding us with immigrants, this administration is now asking, for the 
upcoming fiscal year, that we increase the $65 million to $77,107,000.
  Then there is Honduras, $41,850,000 in foreign assistance to 
Honduras. We have got people flooding up here from Honduras. So what 
does this administration do? Since Honduras, Guatemala, and El 
Salvador--their policies are actually causing people to rush to America 
because this President won't stand firm and enforce our borders and our 
laws.
  The administration says let's give them an extra $7 million for next 
year. Let's take $41 million to $48,176,000.
  Even Mexico, our dear friends in Mexico, they just, in foreign 
assistance, were supposed to receive $206,590,000, $206,590,000 this 
year. Now, it is understandable that this administration would have a 
guilty conscience when it comes to Mexico because it was this 
administration--it was this Attorney General Eric Holder's Justice 
Department that forced the sale of 2,000 or so weapons to criminals 
they expected to go to the drug cartels in Mexico that we know have 
caused at least one American agent's death--Brian Terry--and suspected 
hundreds of deaths in Mexico.
  If I were a Mexican official, I would be outraged at this 
administration. This is no way to perpetuate a strong America for 
future generations.
  People say: What about the children? Well, let me tell you about a 
16-year-old that came to me in tears. She said that she was driving 
there in Tyler, and an illegal alien without a driver's license and 
without insurance slammed his car into hers, and it totaled her car.
  Since the family of this poor child consisted of this girl and her 
single mom and she and her mom, as she explained, were struggling to 
pay their bills--and to get by, she was working after school, and her 
mom was working all she could.
  Even with her mom working as hard as she could and with her working 
after school and trying to study, they couldn't afford to pay for 
comprehensive on her car. All they could afford was liability, as the 
law requires. You have to have at least liability, in case you cause an 
accident.
  Her car was totaled. The illegal alien's car was damaged, but he was 
able to drive it away--was allowed to drive it away because this 
administration says: Hey, States, you can't enforce immigration law, it 
is only us that can do that, and we are not doing it.
  That is what this administration's actions clearly show. For this 
poor child, she says: What do I do? We can't afford another car. We 
couldn't afford comprehensive insurance. We can't afford--we still have 
to pay that car off. How are we going to get by? We can't buy me 
another car, which means I can't get to work, which means I can't pay 
my bills; and my mom, she is doing all she can. She is heartbroken 
because now it means we can't get by.
  Why? Because this administration's cynicism and cavalier attitude 
toward our laws and our border are allowing people to flood into this 
country illegally; and because this administration fights so hard, 
legally using every measure it can to keep States from using their own 
law enforcement to protect themselves, the States are not able to 
arrest illegal aliens.
  So you wonder how many people have to suffer in this country before 
the law will be enforced and it will be impartially applied across the 
board.
  How many times do we have to do damage to people in other countries 
who want to come legally, who have been spending money and time, year 
after year, to apply to come legally, when we are sending the message 
and doing them damage psychologically?
  We make it clear: look, you ought to be cheating like these other 
people. Do you want to get in? Come illegally because this President 
won't send you back. It doesn't matter what he says. Don't look at his 
lips. Don't listen to his words. Look at what they are doing. They are 
not sending people back.

  Think about all the children in American schools around this 
country--because this administration, to their credit, is trying to be 
fair and impartial with all the disasters they are causing, they are 
shipping people with disease, people who will not be able to help pay 
for their educations, they are shipping them all over the country, and 
it is going to cost the local communities and those States all over the 
country because this administration will not enforce the border.
  Well, it is interesting, looking at one provision of the Constitution 
I haven't heard anybody talk about--we have been talking about it in my 
office. I have been talking with some friends about it. I called my 
constitutional law professor from Baylor University. He is looking at 
it. Well, what do you do?
  Did the Founders ever think about what a State could do when the 
Federal Government refuses to protect them and the State is being 
invaded?
  Mr. Speaker, what would you call it when about 300,000 people come 
into your State in a matter of months--short months--and then the 
report comes that there are 300,000 or so people in the pipeline on 
their way up, and then we get the story in the news that Mexico has 
reached an agreement to facilitate more people coming from Guatemala?
  Hey, we will let you come. Just come on. If you are going illegally 
into the United States, then consider free passage through Mexico.
  That would seem to be a bit of a conspiracy between countries 
conspiring to help violate United States law. So what is this 
administration's response with regard to Mexico and Guatemala? Let's 
keep sending them millions of dollars.
  Every dime ought to be cut off from any country that does not help 
the United States enforce our own laws, but if the United States, the 
Federal Government, the Obama administration won't enforce the laws, 
what is a State to do?
  Well, if you look at article I, section 10, the third clause down 
there--the third provision in section 10--apparently, they anticipated 
times--I can't find that it has been used yet--but times when the 
Federal Government has not or will not or cannot protect a State from 
an invasion, then it says--the actual wording:

       No State shall, without the consent of Congress, lay any 
     duty of tonnage, keep troops, or ships of war in time of 
     peace, enter into any agreement or compact with another 
     State, or with a foreign power, or engage in war, unless 
     actually invaded.

  There is a disjunctive ``or'' for another provision, but if a State 
is actually invaded, this says, basically, that the State can start 
putting taxes on things--traveling and interstate commerce--in order to 
pay for its ability to defend its borders.
  It can call up troops. It can even use ships of war, even in times of 
peace. It can enter agreements with other States, say, New Mexico or 
Arizona, if they were interested, or even with a foreign country. If 
this is an invasion, Texas could enter agreements with Mexico directly, 
if there is an actual invasion.
  So, Mr. Speaker, what do you call it when 300,000 people, twice as 
many as invaded France on D-day, come into your State so quickly and 
you get word 300,000 more are on their way up, and you know that those 
little children sitting in schoolrooms are going to have people forced 
in the rooms without any more money to provide for them?
  So people ask: What about the children? It would seem that our oaths 
here in Congress should require us to provide for the common defense 
and to provide for those within our jurisdiction, that we should not 
encourage other countries against the will of the American people or 
against the will of any State to force them to assume hundreds of 
thousands of people that will bankrupt the State, bankrupt their 
schools, and do great damage to

[[Page H6104]]

their children and to their neighborhoods because the people are forced 
there by a government that refuses to follow the Constitution or the 
law.
  We have interesting days ahead. May God give us wisdom and 
discernment to choose wisely.
  With that, I yield back the balance of my time.

                          ____________________