MILCOM — WASHINGTON — The Republican-led House on Thursday narrowly defeated an attempt to bar young immigrants living in the country illegally to enlist in the armed forces, as opponents tied the measure to Donald Trump’s presidential campaign.
Lawmakers voted 211-210 to reject an amendment by Rep. Paul Gosar, R-Ariz., to the annual defense spending bill. He said he wanted to close what he called a “backdoor amnesty program” created by President Barack Obama without approval from Congress.
Rep. Ruben Gallego, D-Ariz., linked Gosar’s amendment to Trump’s characterizations of immigrants and the candidate’s proposals to deport those illegally in the United States. Trump also wants to build a wall along the Mexican border.
“I am glad to see that some Republicans are rejecting the tired, anti-immigrant policies promoted by the likes of Donald Trump,” Gallego, a former Marine who served in Iraq, said.