From a Chambliss press release:
A lot of people have asked me why I became involved in this process initially, and there is a very simple answer: folks in Georgia sent me to Washington to engage in the issues that are important to America, and if we don’t secure the border and fix our broken immigration system our children and grandchildren will suffer the consequences of our failure to act.
Senator Isakson and I participated in the process early on because we wanted to ensure that our views and concerns were expressed and that, first and foremost, the border security triggers were included in the bill. I believe our contribution to the process was critical in strengthening key components of the legislation. While it wasn’t incumbent that everybody agree with the overall bill presented to the American people, it was important that we have a meeting of the minds to allow a full and fair debate on this critical issue. Unfortunately, the parameters that the Majority Leader set for this historic debate did not allow all senators the opportunity to offer and vote on amendments to the legislation. I believe this is too important an issue to restrict the rights of senators and the voices of their constituents.
Too often politicians talk and don’t listen. Georgians made their voices heard loud and clear and we have listened. The resounding opinion we heard was: we do not trust the federal government to enforce the laws in this new legislation because it has never enforced our immigration laws in the past; we need to secure the border the first and then deal with the collateral issues. Due to the tremendous response from Georgians, Senator Isakson and I communicated to President Bush that Congress must pass, and he should sign, a supplemental appropriations bill to fully fund the necessary expenditures to secure our borders first and separately from larger immigration reform legislation.
The debate must continue, because the status quo is not working. I will continue fighting for border security and I will continue to oppose amnesty for those who have broken our laws. Georgians demand no less than our fullest commitment to this critical issue.