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Kevin McCarthy: ‘First Thing We Have to Do Is Secure Our Border’

• November 15, 2016 12:26 pm

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House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R., Calif.) expressed excitement Tuesday morning that House Republicans will be able to pass legislation they support with the election of Donald Trump.

Appearing on Fox and Friends, McCarthy answered questions about immigration, sanctuary cities, and reforming the Department of Veterans Affairs.

McCarthy started the interview by explaining that Republican members of Congress are already drafting legislation to be passed once they are officially sworn in. Lawmakers will be sworn in before the president, and McCarthy said he wants to be able to start passing legislation as soon as possible.

Co-host Brian Kilmeade asked for McCarthy's reaction to some mayors, including New York City's Bill de Blasio and Chicago's Rahm Emanuel, who have announced their cities will remain sanctuary cities for illegal immigrants.

"I think Rahm Emanuel needs to focus on the security of Chicago," McCarthy responded. He noted that getting rid of illegal immigrants who have committed crimes "is not new legislation" but just a matter of enforcing existing laws.

"Do you have any concerns that some are going to say we're not going far enough?" co-host Pete Hegseth asked regarding proposed immigration reform.

"The first thing we have to do is to secure our border. Now, as we get into other parts of immigration reform, I'm sure there will be differences of opinion," McCarthy said. He added that Republican lawmakers realize that the immigration system is broken and needs to be fixed.

He was later asked about how his Republican colleagues have reacted to the election of Donald Trump.

"We're excited. When you walk around the halls of Congress, I see people so excited to finally be able to achieve what they have dreamt," McCarthy said of his Republican caucus. He said his Republican colleagues are ready to get to work on repealing and replacing Obamacare, boosting the economy, and reforming the VA system.

"How we treat our veterans says [a lot] about the character and morals of this nation, and it does not reflect the way we want to represent our veterans," McCarthy asserted about VA reform. "We want to make sure we have the tools when they get back, but we want to give them the care they deserve."

McCarthy has served as House majority leader of the Republican caucus since 2014 and is not expected to be challenged in leadership elections for the incoming Congress.

Published under: Fox and Friends, Kevin McCarthy