This is a partial transcript from "Your World with Neil Cavuto," April 6, 2006, that was edited for clarity.
NEIL CAVUTO, HOST: A major breakthrough, that's what they are calling it, on illegal immigration Thursday, as senators on both sides of the aisle near a deal that pretty much gives a free pass to millions of people who entered this nation illegally.
Senate Republicans and Democrats holding a celebratory news conference to tell America that they're coming together on immigration reform. The new compromise plan will offer legal status to those immigrants here for more than five years, temporary visas to those who have lived here less than five years, but more than two years, and the rest will be sent home — very different from a House bill that will close off the borders and make any illegal immigrant a felon.
Is there any way, then, both chambers can come together on an issue they remain so far apart on?
From Capitol Hill, Republican Congressman J.D. Hayworth of Arizona.
Congressman, what do you think?
REP. J.D. HAYWORTH, R-ARIZ.: Neil, this latest breakthrough from the Senate is not a breakthrough at all. In fact, it is amnesty, surrounded by bureaucracy, and enraptured in fraud. There is no way this will work. It is reminiscent of the 1986 deal. In the words of Yogi Berra, it looks like we are ready for deja vu all over again.
CAVUTO: So, there is no bridge here between you and the Senate on this?
HAYWORTH: Well, here is the thing.
You know, one aspect of every one of the bills, McCain, Kennedy, Kyl, Cornyn, even now I guess what we call Rube Goldberg, is the notion of enforcement. Now, if you really want to bring people together we need to go with enforcement first. Enforce existing laws and close loopholes exploited by unscrupulous employers and illegals who have gamed the system.
Let's do that first, and that seems to be the one thing that everybody agrees on, and yet the Senate has come up with this Rube Goldberg-esque approach.
CAVUTO: Is this dividing your party?
HAYWORTH: It is a topic of conversation. Will it divide us horribly? I don't know.
I think back to my youth, when Ronald Reagan said, let's win the Cold War, and when Gerald Ford said, no, we need a detente with the Soviet Union. It is the major issue of our day and it is one where the lines of disagreement are clearly drawn.
CAVUTO: Congressman, do you think your eventual Republican presidential nominee in a couple of years, do you think that person has to be on your side on this immigration debate or someone closer to what was crafted in the Senate?
HAYWORTH: I will tell you this, Neil. I think our eventual nominee has to be on the side of the American people.
And one thing we cannot deny about this guest-worker amnesty plan, whether you are on the left or the right, the special interests on both sides are pushing guest-worker amnesty, not the majority of the American people. That's why we should follow enforcement first, as I outline in my book "Whatever It Takes."
CAVUTO: Let me ask you, Congressman, there is the practical issue of practically getting 11 million people out of this country, if that's what the House wants to do.
HAYWORTH: Well, again, one of the misnomers of this is people asking first, what do we do about the 11 million who are already here?
Respectfully, that is the wrong question to ask first. And the other thing we understand is this. If you cut off the jobs given out to illegals and you cut off the benefits going to illegals, guess what? People relocate as a business decision all the time. I think you will see people relocate to their home countries, because...
CAVUTO: Think of that though, Congressman.
HAYWORTH: Well, yes. Let's think about it.
CAVUTO: That if you are in America, right, pretty good country, right?
HAYWORTH: You bet. You bet.
CAVUTO: There is no way in you know what you are going to leave, even without a job, right?
HAYWORTH: Even without a job, even without unfettered access to the emergency room, where you can go for anything from a hangnail to a massive cerebral hemorrhage.
Look, we have so taxed and drained our health care system, our educational system. We are giving special privileges to non-citizens, in terms of social benefits. Those go away, and, quite frankly, Neil, a couple of CEOs doing a perp walk will have an incredible effect on toning down the situation we have now.
We need enforcement first and you will see people relocate. We know that illegals go back and forth all the time for special family occasions and for holidays, making a mockery of the notion of enforcing our borders at the current time.
CAVUTO: We are months away from a joint deal, aren't we?
HAYWORTH: Well, I predicted, back in December — you may recall, I opposed the House bill, because I called it enforcement maybe. I said it would end up as holiday window dressing, and the Senate and the administration would attempt to force a guest-worker amnesty package down the throat of the American people.
That's what's going on. That's why I would appeal to the administration and to the Senate to go with what everybody agrees on. And that is enforcement.
CAVUTO: All right. Congressman J.D. Hayworth, thank you.
HAYWORTH: Thank you, Neil.
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