South Carolina Rep. Trey Gowdy met with voters in the Upstate, coming out of a week with a lot of national media coverage for his congressional immigration bill proposal.
It's drawn a lot of criticism by people who say if it's passed, all unauthorized immigrants will immediately become criminals.
Gowdy stands by his claim that strict enforcement is necessary.
As kids enjoyed ice cream, parents and voters gathered at the Bruster's in Taylors to hear what Rep. Gowdy had to say.
Conservative talk radio show host Josh Kimbrell posed questions about the IRS targeting Tea Party groups, the NSA collecting Americans' cell phone data, the economy and immigration.
Gowdy said his plan for the House bill, differs from the Senate's, which he will not vote for, because he wants to have smaller bills on different aspects of immigration, separate.
He said he would link internal security with employment security, but will not accept a bill regulating high skilled visas, paired with a path to citizenship, or the DREAM act.
About his bill, Gowdy said, "It's enforcement centric. That was on purpose. I suppose it is controversial on some circles, although I would argue, you trust state and local government to enforce every other category of crime for murder and shoplifting, I don't know why anyone would not all of a sudden… not trust them to enforce immigration laws. But the enforcement part is absolutely a condition precedent."
To start Friday night's forum, the radio show hosts lead with a prayer in Jesus' name. Then they brought up Liberty High School valedictorian, Roy Costner, to award him with the 2013 Wilberforce Award, to honor him for standing up for his Christian faith, amidst adversity.
Costner has gotten national attention this past week, after he prayed, in Jesus' name, at his high school graduation.
"These two days of adventure felt like an entire week full of events. It was very, it was, it's still just, I can't express it any other way than it's astonishing. If God hadn't have shown out on June 1, nothing like this would've ever happened, it's all to him," Costner said.
This last week, Costner's been on Fox Carolina, and also CNN and Fox News. He said he didn't expect to get so much attention, but he's proud to stand up for what he believes. He said he'll be traveling this summer, speaking to churches and youth groups about his passion.
The first question posed to Gowdy Friday involved what some are calling an "attack" on Christianity. Gowdy said he and others in Congress want to uphold Judeo-Christian values, but he wished the Supreme Court comprised of more Christians, or at least had less power to set precedents.
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