One leading Republican senator is publicly defending Jeb Bush’s “act of love” comment on undocumented immigrants, saying the former governor should be “praised” for his humane stance on immigration.
Seung Min Kim of Politico reports that U.S. Sen. Jeff Flake, in a four-paragraph post on Facebook, told followers, “I agree with Jeb, and applaud him for having the guts to say it.”
“I hold no brief for Jeb Bush,” the Arizona senator continued, “but having such a prominent Republican speak so humanely and unapologetically about the motivations behind many of those who have come to reside in this country is good for all of us.”
Bush, who leads the field as a potential 2016 GOP presidential candidate, made the controversial comments earlier this month when he said that illegal immigration to the United States was not a felony, but an “act of love” for families in their home countries.
Flake was a member of the “Gang of Eight” in the Senate, which developed an immigration reform bill last June that passed with 68 votes.
Kim writes that Flake understands the motivations of immigrants to the U.S., and relates to Bush’s feelings on the subject.
“Sure, some come with the intent to do harm or simply to take advantage of our generosity,” Flake added. “But many come to find work to feed their families. To lump everyone who crosses the border illegally into the same class is unfair and unproductive.”