Liberal-leaning Rep. Wayne Gilchrest is fighting for his political life against two Republican challengers in Maryland's 1st Congressional District from conservatives led by state Sen. Andy Harris. Federal Election Commission figures show that between Oct. 1 and Jan. 23, Mr. Harris led all Republican candidates with $1.1 million during the current election cycle. Mr. Gilchrest raised $393,000 during the same period, bringing his total to more than $577,000. State Sen. E.J. Pipkin, who entered the race in November, has put more than $800,000 of his own money into the race, Congressional Quarterly reports
While fundraising speaks volumes, Mr. Gilchrest's voting record says it all. The 16-year House veteran yesterday participated in a briefing with Immigration and Customs Enforcement and other elected officials to discuss ways to solve the illegal immigration problem. But do voters know the truth?
Following are five of Mr. Gilchrest's pro-illegal immigration votes as compiled by Numbers USA:
• On July 8, 2004, the House rejected 278-139 an amendment that would have increased funding for the Justice Department to enforce current federal law against "sanctuary cities" for illegal aliens. A total of 134 Republicans voted for the amendment, while 87, including Mr. Gilchrest, were opposed.
• On Sept. 9, 2004, Mr. Gilchrest voted against an amendment that would have barred funding for a U.S.-Mexico "totalization" agreement, which would allow some illegal aliens working in the United States to qualify for Social Security benefits. The amendment was defeated 225-178, with 149 Republicans voting for the amendment, and 61, including Mr. Gilchrest, voting no.
• On Sept. 14, 2004, Mr. Gilchrest voted for an amendment to strip from a Transportation/Treasury Department appropriations bill language barring the Bush administration from enforcing regulations that permit or allow financial institutions to accept Mexico's fraud-ridden matricula consular card as a form of identification. The amendment passed 222-177, with 49 Republicans, including Mr. Gilchrest voting in favor and 161 voting against.
• On May 17, 2005, Mr. Gilchrest voted against an amendment to Homeland Security legislation that would have denied DHS funding to state and local governments that refuse to share information with federal immigration authorities. The amendment was defeated 258-165, with 163 Republicans in favor and 65, including Mr. Gilchrest, opposed.
• On June 16, 2005, Mr. Gilchrest voted against an amendment to a State-Justice-Commerce appropriations bill that would deny federal funding to states and cities that violate federal law by adopting "sanctuary" policies barring police and other officials from asking about immigration status. The amendment was defeated 222-204 with 189 Republicans in favor and just 37, including Mr. Gilchrest, opposed.
Mr. Gilchrest has a lot of explaining to do about his votes to aid and abet illegal aliens.