WASHINGTON (AP) - Any "illegal aliens" who attend Tuesday's State of the Union address as guests of Democrats should be arrested and deported, a Republican congressman from Arizona said.
More than 20 Democratic lawmakers have invited "Dreamers," young immigrants who were brought to the U.S. as children and are living here illegally, to President Donald Trump's first State of the Union address. Congress has been unable to come up with a legislative solution for their legal status, which was at the center of the recent government shutdown.
"Of all the places where the rule of law needs to be enforced, it should be in the hallowed halls of Congress," Rep. Paul Gosar tweeted. "Any illegal aliens attempting to go through security, under any pretext of invitation or otherwise, should be arrested and deported."
Additionally, Congressman Gosar asked that they arrest those using fraudulent social security numbers and identification to pass through security.— Rep. Paul Gosar, DDS (@RepGosar) January 30, 2018
A spokeswoman for Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan said, "The speaker clearly does not agree." The U.S. Capitol Police did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Among the high-profile Democrats who have invited Dreamers to the speech are House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and potential 2020 presidential candidates New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker and California Sen. Kamala Harris.
Trump has announced plans to end Obama-era protections for such immigrants. He now says he wants to grant them a path to citizenship, but Congress has not been able to agree to a deal.
Dreamers are set to lose protection from deportation in March.
Gosar's suggestion drew a quick rejoinder from Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., who tweeted back: "This is why we can't have nice things..."
This is why we can’t have nice things... https://t.co/2vLHDFvFgq— Jeff Flake (@JeffFlake) January 30, 2018