WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Today, the RSC announced that the RSC Steering Committee took an official position opposing the Biden immigration agenda and put forth a conservative immigration framework. The framework will help conservatives explain how Biden policies have created the current crisis and how the conservative position on immigration would fix it.
The steering committee statement is being released after eight members of the Republican Study Committee, led by RSC Chairman Rep. Jim Banks (IN-03) and Rep. Tony Gonzales (TX-23), visited the southern border last week to see the crisis firsthand.
Upon returning from the trip, Chairman Banks put together a memo explaining what the group saw and included recommendations for fixing it.
The RSC Steering Committee statement follows the memo’s recommendations:
“In a matter of months, the Biden administration created a full-blown crisis on our southern border. Biden’s immigration agenda places the interests of the American People behind the interests of illegal aliens, criminal cartels, and ultra-wealthy multinational corporations by rejecting responsible limits or controls on the number of people entering the country, even during a global pandemic. The RSC Steering Committee opposes Biden’s open borders agenda and will work to block all efforts to achieve it, including by rejecting requests for funding that would facilitate any aspect of it.
“By contrast, we believe U.S. immigration policy should be designed to primarily serve the interest of American citizens, families, and workers. We embrace these principles:
- Immigration policy should protect our national security by protecting the American people from terrorism, cartels, and other threats to their safety;
- Immigration policy should prioritize American workers, help grow our middle class, raise wages, and enhance economic opportunity for all lawful residents;
- Immigration policy should respect the rule of law, along with immigrants that honor our legal immigration processes, rather than incentivize law breaking;
- Immigration policy should aim to assimilate legal immigrants into the American family so they too can take pride in our values, history, and heritage.
“An immigration policy that embraces these principles would lead to a safer, more secure, more prosperous, and more united country.”
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Chairman of the Republican Study Committee Rep. Jim Banks (IN-03) has returned from co-leading a congressional delegation of eight RSC members with Rep. Tony Gonzales (TX-23) on a tour of the southern border. They made various stops within Rep. Gonzales’s district, including the Eagle Pass DHS detention facility and sites along the Del Rio border sector.
“It’s important our leaders listen to those on the ground most affected by border policies. When we did that, we learned that the policies President Trump put in place were putting us on the right path, but the policies of the Biden administration have created a crisis on our border,” said Banks.
Banks continued: “That’s why we’re leaving this trip and calling on the President and Vice President to come down and see for themselves how their policies are hurting people!”
Rep. Banks and Rep. Gonzales were joined by Rep. Kelly Armstrong (ND-AL), Kevin Hern (OK-01), Ashley Hinson (IA-01), Chris Jacobs (NY-27), Lloyd Smucker (PA-11) and Victoria Spartz (IN-05).
WASHINGTON – Today, the Chairman of the Republican Study Committee Rep. Jim Banks released the following statement reacting to President Biden’s $1.5 trillion request in discretionary funding for FY2022:
“Joe Biden must live in an alternate reality where it’s sane to increase annual spending by hundreds of billions of dollars to fund Green New Deal priorities, promote abortions, bow to the China-compromised World Health Organization, infringe on Second Amendment rights, and support illegal immigration during a border crisis while cutting funds needed to defend our nation against malign aggressors in the Middle East, the Putin regime, and critically an increasingly dangerous Communist China. Let’s not forget that his socialist agenda will ultimately be paid for with tax hikes that will kill jobs, investment, and the savings of everyday Americans.”
WASHINGTON—Today, the Republican Study Committee Steering Committee took an official position against the Biden tax increases:
“President Biden and Congressional Democrats are readying a plan to massively increase taxes on the American people. These tax increases would impose more punitive rates than Communist China, undermine our economic recovery, and harm small businesses that have struggled to stay afloat during the pandemic. Even worse, Democrats will use the tax increases to fund their radical, partisan agenda. American taxpayers will be on the hook for ‘Green New Deal’ priorities and pork-barrel boondoggles earmarked for Democrat districts. Biden and Congressional Democrats’ assault on American jobs and American taxpayers is simply unconscionable.”
WASHINGTON—Today, Republican Study Chairman Jim Banks and 8 RSC members introduced the Stop Shielding Culpable Platforms Act. The bill would remove Section 230’s liability protections from Big Tech platforms when they knowingly share illegal and harmful content.
Said RSC Chairman Rep. Jim Banks: “Tyranny means knowingly breaking the law without fear of legal repercussions. No wonder Big Tech feels empowered to ban the President of the United States, supposedly to protect their users, while turning a blind eye to child pornography. Section 230 has placed them outside and above the law. It’s past time for Congress to roll back Section 230’s most egregious and expansive special legal protections. Republican Study’s bill is a good place to start.”
Said Rep. Andy Barr: “Social media companies have long been able to hide behind a misinterpretation of Section 230 that enables them to knowingly share illicit content on their platforms without liability. The Stop Shielding Culpable Platforms Act ensures that when social media companies know of the harmful and illegal content that is shared on their platform, they can be held liable.”
Said Rep. Brian Babin: “For too long, Big Tech has been allowed to break our laws with zero consequences. Congress must act now to roll back Section 230, so that these platforms are finally held accountable for their actions. This bill is a much-needed first step.”
Said Rep. Dan Bishop: “Big Tech has monopolized free speech markets, hand picking who can exercise First Amendment rights while ignoring egregious content for personal gain. Our laws must prioritize preserving Americans’ right to Free Speech. When an institution or organization wields the power to censor duly elected officials and cancel individuals without recourse, there is a problem. I am proud to join this effort and am grateful to Rep. Jim Banks for leading this bill.”
Said Rep. Bob Gibbs: “Big tech and social media have been hiding behind Section 230 of the CDA to justify the censorship of law-abiding Americans in the name of protecting the public, while at the same time protecting illegal and illicit activities on their platforms like child pornography and racial discrimination. The Stop Shielding Culpable Platforms Act makes it clear that if a platform knowingly shares illegal content, they will face the necessary consequences as a distributor of content and can no longer rely on the protections of Section 230.”
Said Rep. Guy Reschenthaler: “Big Tech companies are blatantly abusing Section 230 legal protections, not just to censor individuals or content, but to make themselves invincible from knowingly distributing illegal content such as child pornography. Twitter did not take down a child pornography video even after the victim notified them. I am appalled that Twitter has no problem with censoring conservative posts and removing individuals, including the President of the United States, but fails to remove child pornography. I am proud to join my Republican colleagues to take action and stop Big Tech’s dangerous and harmful overreach by introducing the Stop Shielding Culpable Platforms Act.”
RSC released a memorandum in January about reforming Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act.
Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas has criticized lower courts’ broad interpretation of Section 230 that extended its legal shield to platforms that knowingly sharing illegal content.
Rep. Tom Tiffany (WI-07)
Rep. Guy Reschenthaler (PA-14)
Rep. Andy Barr (KY-06)
Rep. Ralph Norman (SC-05)
Rep. Randy Weber (TX-14)
Rep. Dan Bishop (NC-9)
Rep. Brian Babin (TX-36)
Rep. Bob Gibbs (OH-7)
The Stop Shielding Culpable Platforms Act is endorsed by the American Principles Project and received a statement of support from the Internet Accountability Project.
APP President Terry Schilling said: "The federal government shouldn't be preventing victims of sexual exploitation from suing their exploiters. But under Section 230, online platforms that knowingly allow illicit content or engage in illegal activity are granted immunity from civil liability. This is a terrible wrong that must be corrected. We applaud RSC Chairman Banks for taking the lead on this important issue. Any Section 230 reform passed into law should include language that would give victims of sexual exploitation the right to their day in court."
Internet Accountability Project President Mike Davis said: “IAP applauds Chairman Banks for his leadership in holding Big Tech accountable, and we look forward to working with him as this important legislation works its way through Congress.”
WASHINGTON – The Republican Study Committee Steering Committee met and adopted an official position to oppose Democrats’ plan to pass a party-line COVID relief bill. After they adopted that position, they released the following statement:
“The Republican Study Committee, the largest conservative caucus on Capitol Hill, opposes Democrats’ push for a liberal wish list that they are calling a ‘COVID-relief package.’ At a time when we should be creating jobs, growing the economy, and reopening schools, this package will kill jobs and critically enlarge the national debt even further—not to mention there is currently over $1 trillion in unspent relief money available from previous congressional action.”
WASHINGTON—Today, Republican Study Committee Chairman Jim Banks and 199 of his Republican colleagues sent a letter to congressional leaders pledging to oppose any government funding bill that eliminates or weakens the Hyde Amendment or other current-law, pro-life appropriations provisions.
The Hyde amendment is a four decade-old ban on taxpayer-funded abortions that has suddenly been placed on the chopping block by radical Democrats, despite the fact that it’s received bipartisan support from every president since Jimmy Carter and even Joe Biden expressed support for it as recently as 2019.
Chairman of the RSC Jim Banks said: “Despite decades of consensus on this issue, radical Democrats have signaled they no longer have an interest in protecting the conscience rights of millions of Americans who do not want their hard-earned money used to pay for abortions. My colleagues and I demand congressional leaders protect the ban on taxpayer-funded abortions and save the Hyde Amendment.”
Here is a link to the final copy of the letter.
Americans United for Life
Concerned Women for America
Eagle Forum (scoring)
Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission
Family Policy Alliance
Family Research Council
Heritage Action for America
March for Life (scoring)
Susan B. Anthony List (scoring)
National Right to Life
What They’re Saying:
“American citizens deserve the certainty of knowing that their hard-earned dollars won’t be spent to end innocent human life. The Hyde Amendment has routinely enjoyed bipartisan support and is one of the greatest public policy successes in the history of our country, in part, because it has protected more than 2.4 million precious lives. The Hyde Amendment should also be maintained because it enjoys the support of a majority of Americans, is unquestionably constitutional, and protects the fundamental conscience rights of millions of Americans.”
– Denise Burke, Senior Counsel, Alliance Defending Freedom
"For more than 40 years, the Hyde Amendment has been accepted policy and ensured that no taxpayer dollars have gone on to fund abortions. I applaud Chairman Banks, the RSC, and the Republican conference for being united in standing for life. "
- Jessica Anderson, Executive Director, Heritage Action for America
“For nearly forty-five years, the Hyde Amendment and similar conscience-based protections have protected pro-life Americans from paying for procedures that destroy human lives. Americans know that abortion is not healthcare, and the abortion industry does not have women’s health in mind, only its bottom line. Americans United for Life is proud to stand with Members of Congress to fight to preserve these critical provisions that are now under attack by abortion extremists.”
– Catherine Glenn Foster, President & CEO, Americans United for Life
“Concerned Women for America Legislative Action Committee calls on Congress to Hold the Line on Life. We must Save Hyde as a continuing promise to American workers that our federal taxes will not be used to pay for annihilating unborn children. No humane society should promote the destruction of human life with its tax dollars.”
– Concerned Women for America Legislative Action Committee
“The Hyde Amendment is vital to securing the rights of Americans, including the preborn. Without Hyde, taxpayer dollars will be used to fund abortion and lead to violating millions of Americans’ conscience rights. In the year following Roe v. Wade, 1 in every 3 abortions were funded by taxpayers. To add to this, 1 in 9 individuals born to a mother on Medicaid owes his or her life to the Hyde Amendment. For more than forty years the Hyde Amendment has rightly received bipartisan support. The rights of too many are at stake to change that now.”
– Kirsten Hasler, Executive Director, Eagle Forum
“I am encouraged to see strong leadership by the Republican Study Committee and Chairman Jim Banks as they draw a clear line on protecting the Hyde Amendment and other longstanding pro-life protections. Prohibiting taxpayer funding of the gruesome practice of abortion is consistently popular with the American people and has been reflected in congressional spending for over 40 years. As Democrats break with the longstanding bipartisan support of the Hyde Amendment and demand forced funding of abortion by taxpayers, it is critical for pro-life members of Congress to stand up for the consciences of American taxpayers.”
– Tony Perkins, President, Family Research Council
“The impact the Hyde Amendment has had cannot be overstated: It has proven itself to be the greatest domestic abortion-reduction measure ever enacted by Congress. The Hyde Amendment has enjoyed bipartisan support for over 40 years and is widely recognized as having saved over two million American lives since it was first passed in 1976.”
– National Right to Life
WASHINGTON – Today, Republican Study Committee Chairman Jim Banks (R-IN) is introducing an important new piece of legislation called the Save Democracy Act. This legislation has received the formal backing of the Republican Study Committee and addresses one of the top issue areas Chairman Banks has prioritized for the 117th Congress: Restoring Trust in Elections. Please find a statement below:
“The Republican Study Committee formally endorses the Save Democracy Act that would ensure free and fair federal elections in 2022, 2024 and the years to come. It is our duty to protect and uphold the democratic process and restore public trust in our election system.”
Chairman Jim Banks said: “This bill will restore the public’s trust that their vote is counted and their voice is heard.”
Heritage Action Executive Director Jessica Anderson said: “I applaud Chairman Banks and members of the RSC for putting forward real solutions to help protect the integrity of our elections and the sanctity of the vote. The Save Democracy Act will protect against fraud, ensuring our next election is safer and more secure."
Rep. Rick Allen said: “Voting is the most important tool in which we shape our republic. Too many Americans have lost faith in the integrity of our elections, and it is incumbent on leaders at all levels to work together to implement safeguards to strengthen and restore faith in the process. The Save Democracy Act will help to ensure that only legal votes are counted through necessary reforms to registering voters, casting ballots and tabulating ballots.”
Rep. Kelly Armstrong said: “Ensuring integrity of elections is a cornerstone of our American republic. I strongly oppose federal control of our election process, and this bill enacts commonsense, limited reforms to federal election laws to ensure that the states have the tools needed to securely and fairly conduct our elections and restore faith in our democratic process.”
Rep. Jodey Arrington said: “Free and fair elections are the cornerstone of our constitutional republic. We must restore America’s confidence in the integrity of our elections, which was seriously undermined by the weak and unreliable voting rules in the 2020 Presidential Election. The Save Democracy Act will protect states’ sovereignty while ensuring integrity for all through basic standards and safeguards in national elections.”
Rep. Ted Budd said: “The 2020 election exposed the need for wholesale reform of our elections. In the end, faith in our government is at stake. Faith in our institutions rests on whether or not people believe that their vote counts. The way to restore this faith is to demonstrate that we hear the American people’s concerns and act accordingly. Chairman Banks’ Save Democracy Act goes a long way to restore election integrity and I thank him for taking the lead on this.”
Rep. Kat Cammack said: “The Save Democracy Act will improve security and administration measures to protect the integrity of our electoral system. The 2020 presidential election revealed glaring weaknesses that must be addressed and this bill will take the necessary steps to make sure Americans have confidence in their sacred right to vote.”
Rep. Lance Gooden said: “Americans should have faith their legal vote isn’t being drowned out by ballots cast illegally. We must prevent any problems that occurred during the 2020 election from happening again.”
Rep. Kevin Hern said: “The Save Democracy Act will restore confidence in American elections and ensure that when you cast your vote, that vote is safe. After past elections, millions of Americans raised concerns about the security of their votes from attackers both foreign and domestic. Where there’s smoke, there’s usually fire – even the appearance of corruption must be rooted out. These common-sense reforms would give Americans the assurance they need to vote with confidence and trust the results.”
Rep. Yvette Herrel said: “The Elections Clause of the U.S. Constitution empowers Congress to make or alter state election regulations at any time. The reforms included in the Save Democracy Act – from citizenship and voter verification requirements to ballot integrity measures – are essential to restoring Americans’ faith in the fairness of our elections.”
Rep. Ronnie Jackson said: “As we look to heal from a tumultuous election cycle, election integrity will be a critical issue to address. We cannot allow our elections to become so clouded with doubt that distrust becomes the new norm. Congress must do its job to give Americans confidence in their vote and to crack down on opportunities for fraud. That is why I signed on as an original co-sponsor to the Save Democracy Act, which includes commonsense reforms to voter registration, ballot casting, and ballot tabulation processes in federal elections.”
Rep. Nicole Malliotakis said: “I’m proud to join Chairman Banks to push the Save Democracy Act that will secure voter registration, protect ballot casting and safeguard ballot tabulation. Nothing is more important than the integrity of our election system and it is past time for Congress to come together and work in a bipartisan fashion to improve it, eliminate irregularities and fraud and ensure that election security is no longer debated in the future.”
Rep. August Pfluger said: “The people of the 11th District of Texas demand secure and transparent elections. In that effort, I am proud to support the Save Democracy Act to address key failures in our electoral system including voter registration, ballot casting, and ballot counting. It is imperative that Congress moves to restore the faith in our democratic process and bring certitude to every American.”
List of Original Cosponsors:
Kat Cammack (R-FL) Yvette Herrell (R-NM)
Clay Higgins (R-LA Dan Meuser (R-PA)
Andy Barr (R-KY) Nicole Malliotakis (R-NY)
Brad Wenstrup (R-OH) Ronny Jackson (R-TX)
Lance Gooden (R-TX) Kelly Armstrong (R-ND)
Jackie Walorski (R-IN) Brian Babin (R-TX)
W. Gregory Steube (R-FL) Michael Waltz (R-FL)
Ralph Norman (R-SC) Kevin Hern (R-OK)
Bob Good (R-VA) Ted Budd (R-NC)
Tim Walberg (R-MI) Randy Weber (R-TX)
David McKinley (R-WV) Rick Allen (R-GA)
August Pfluger (R-TX) Robert B. Aderholt (R-AL)
Jodey Arrington (R-TX) Jeff Duncan (R-SC)
Austin Scott (R-GA) Bob Gibbs (R-SC)
Bill Posey (R-FL) Guy Reschenthaler (R-PA)
The Save Democracy Act would prohibit or reform current practices that weaken the security, oversight, and administration of elections for federal office. The Save Democracy Act would enhance federal election integrity by addressing three key areas: (1) Voter Registration; (2) Casting of Ballots; (3) Tabulation of Ballots.
· Prohibits automatic voter registration for federal elections.
· Requires voter citizenship verification to register to vote in federal elections.
· Requires full Social Security Numbers (SSN) to register to vote in federal elections.
· Requires federal courts to notify state election officials when an individual is excused from jury duty because they are not a citizen.
Casting of Ballots:
· Prohibit states from sending out unrequested absentee ballots for federal elections.
· Bars anyone other than the voter, an election official, or the post office from submitting a ballot to a polling location during federal elections.
· Prohibits use of public ballot collection boxes in federal elections.
· Requires that absentee ballots be received by the close of election day for federal elections.
· Requires a voter to provide proof of I.D. for absentee voting and in-person voting in federal elections, creating equal treatment for all ballots.
· Requires voters to produce a matching SSN printed on their ballot in federal elections. Additionally, requires election officials to cross-check the SSN on a ballot with the voter’s registration and submit such data to Congress.
· Maintains current protections for military and overseas voters.
Tabulation of Ballots:
· Requires that at least two representatives of each Presidential campaign in a general election be permitted to observe polls and vote counting operations.
· Requires that ballot counting, once begun, continue until completed—no delays or pauses.
· Requires the audit of ballot tabulation systems within the 30-day period following a federal election.