WASHINGTON — Rep. Steve King of Iowa and Rep. Michele Bachmann of Minnesota, two of the most outspoken Republican critics to the president’s executive actions on immigration, are heading to the U.S.-Mexico border on Friday to meet with border officials.
Their trip is timed to coincide with President Barack Obama’s visit to a high school in Las Vegas, Nevada to tout his move to give as many as 5 million immigrants in the U.S. now the ability to obtain visas to remain with their families.
The two conservatives visited the south western border earlier this summer. Their last trip was to meet with officials dealing with a massive influx of undocumented children fleeing violence in their home countries in Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador.
On Wednesday, Bachmann, who is has frequently stirred up controversy with her remarks, referred to some of those who would be covered by the president’s actions as “illiterate.”
“The social cost will be profound on the U.S. taxpayer — millions of unskilled, illiterate, foreign nationals coming into the United States who can’t speak the English language,” Bachmann said in comments reported by the Washington Post.
Bachmann and King are among a group of House GOP member who are urging leaders to use a must pass spending bill to strip any federal funds for those agencies carrying out the president’s plan.
But many congressional Republicans are cautioning their colleagues there are limitations to how far Congress can go to block the president’s action. They are discussing various proposals, but argue against passing a bill that will certainly be vetoed by the president and trigger another government shutdown.
King told reporters outside the House floor on Thursday all options — including blocking funding and censuring the president — should be on the table. He said had “a rider in his pocket” – a bill he is pushing to change the law so that the U.S. Citizens and Immigrations Services (USCIS) customs and immigrations cannot issue any new visas.
“We can do anything we want to do — I’m not all worried about whether this can be done or not — it’s whether it will be done,” King said.