Republican Senators Jim Bunning and Mitch McConnell of Kentucky were both on the prevailing side in a showdown vote on June 28, 2007, halting the immigration bill’s passage.
McConnell had been tight-lipped about how he would ultimately vote. He said the bill wasn’t supported by his constituents or by most Americans. He indicated it was the proposal to legalize millions of unlawful immigrants that drew most of the public’s concern, along with skepticism that border enforcement would be strengthened.
McConnell’s office said it heard from more than 20,000 Kentuckians in the past few weeks on the issue and the overwhelming majority opposed the bill.
Bunning said his office received thousands of calls and emails in the last month urging him to oppose the proposal. He said the Senate needs to renew the issue but that reform shouldn’t include amnesty.