As the mayor of Hazleton, Pennsylvania, I introduced the Illegal Immigration Relief Act in 2006. The IIRA was the first local law of its kind in the nation. It cracked down on local employers who knowingly hired illegal aliens and landlords who knowingly provided refuge to them.  My concentrated effort served as a blueprint for other jurisdictions, such as Valley Park, Missouri; Fremont, Nebraska; and the State of Arizona, to enact their own anti-illegal immigration legislation.  On May 26, 2011, the United States Supreme Court ruled that states have the right to create and enforce their own anti-illegal immigration policies. A few days later, the high court overturned the lower court rulings that prevented the City of Hazleton from enforcing the IIRA, and ordered a federal circuit court to re-hear the case. In Washington, I continue to fight for the rule of law.

There should not and cannot be a plan to offer amnesty to the millions of illegal aliens present until we secure the borders.  Various proposals are inadequate, in that there are no standards for what a secure border truly is.  Putting the northern, southern, and water-bound borders aside, what about all of the inland portals?  If your state is home to an international airport, then you effectively live in a border state, given that 40 percent of all illegal aliens present today arrived on visas that have now expired.

A homeowner would never replace the wet carpet while there was still a hole in the roof.

The real losers in this debate will unfortunately be those immigrants who have come here legally – new Americans – who have chosen our country to improve their own lives and those of their families.  They have obeyed our laws and will see an untold number of illegal aliens emerge and compete for jobs, opportunities, and resources that are already scarce.  The message we will be sending to them is that their hard work and perseverance was pointless, because we will reward lawbreakers with the chance to take jobs at lower wages and cut the line in front of them.

As a member of the House Homeland Security Committee, which has broad jurisdiction over border security, protecting the country from terrorist attacks, responding to disasters, and protecting national infrastructure, I will be a loud voice to fix our broken borders and immigration system.

More on Immigration

May 24, 2017 Press Release

WASHINGTON – The U.S. House Ways and Means Committee today passed legislation introduced by Congressman Lou Barletta (PA-11) to stop fraud in the distribution of health care tax credits and protect taxpayer dollars.

A 2016 Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs report revealed that, under Obamacare, $750 million in taxpayer-funded health care subsidies went to people who did not qualify for those benefits.

May 24, 2017 Press Release

​Click here to see video of Barletta’s questioning.

Apr 26, 2017 Press Release

WASHINGTON – Congressman Lou Barletta (PA-11) today applauded the launch of an office within the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), which will provide services to people who have been victims of crimes committed by illegal aliens.  The Victims of Immigration Crime Engagement Office (VOICE) was established by President Donald J.

Apr 25, 2017 Press Release

WASHINGTON – Congressman Lou Barletta (PA-11) today faulted a federal district court judge’s ruling which temporarily blocks a portion of President Donald J.

Mar 30, 2017 Press Release

WASHINGTON – Congressman Lou Barletta (PA-11) today announced the introduction of a bill he co-sponsored that would help to pay for President Donald J. Trump’s proposed wall along the southern border.  Introduced by Rep. Mike D. Rogers (AL-03), with additional sponsors Reps. Mo Brooks (AL-05) and Matt Gaetz (FL-01), the Border Wall Funding Act of 2017 would impose a two percent fee on all remittances, or wire transfers, headed south of the U.S. border and dedicate a portion of that revenue to help fund the president’s proposed border wall.

Mar 27, 2017 Press Release

WASHINGTON – Congressman Lou Barletta (PA-11) today applauded the Department of Justice’s announcement that it will deny certain federal grant funding to sanctuary cities.  The policy will require jurisdictions to certify compliance with federal immigration laws in order to be eligible for Department of Justice grants.  Barletta is the author of legislation, the Mobilizing Against Sanctuary Cities Act, H.R.

Mar 22, 2017 Press Release

WASHINGTON – Congressman Lou Barletta (PA-11) today introduced his bill to deny health care tax credits to illegal immigrants and ensure that Americans’ hard-earned tax dollars go only to those with valid social security numbers.  Barletta’s bill, the Verify First Act, H.R. 1671, is the result of a meeting he had with President Donald J.

Mar 22, 2017 Press Release

WASHINGTON – Congressman Lou Barletta (PA-11) today released the following statement after meeting with Speaker Paul Ryan and President Donald J. Trump last evening.  They discussed Barletta’s concerns that illegal immigrants would receive tax credits under the American Health Care Act (AHCA). Barletta stated Monday that he would vote against the bill unless his concerns were addressed.

Mar 16, 2017 Press Release

WASHINGTON – Congressman Lou Barletta (PA-11) today faulted two federal district court rulings temporarily blocking President Donald J. Trump’s executive order suspending travel to the United States from six countries with strong connections to terrorism.

Mar 6, 2017 Press Release

WASHINGTON – Congressman Lou Barletta (PA-11) today applauded President Trump’s latest executive order, which pauses the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program for 120 days. It also suspends the issuance of new visas for 90 days for individuals from six countries that either are designated as state sponsors of terrorism, or have become terrorist hotbeds.  The six countries are Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen.