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New Congress Will Not Transfer Jurisdiction over Immigration

Rep. Sam Rayburn, Speaker of the House, killed yesterday the likelihood that jurisdiction over immigration and passport legislation would be transferred from the House Judiciary Committee to a reconstituted Committee on Un-American Activities to be known as the Committee on Internal Security. Addressing his first press conference of the current Congressional session, Mr. Rayburn said simply: “We’re not going to do that.”

With these words he turned thumbs down on a proposal by Pep. Francis Walters, co-author of the highly controversial McCarran-Walter Immigration and Naturalization Act. Rep. Walter, who is chairman of the House Un-American Activities Committee, is chairman of the Judiciary’s units Immigration Subcommittee. In that capacity he and Rep. Emanuel Celler, Judiciary Committee chairman, have clashed frequently.

Since Rep. Walter voiced his proposal last week, opposition has been heard in many quarters including the Central Conference of American Rabbis and former Sen. Herbert H. Lehman who pointed out that such a transfer of jurisdiction would place the loyalty of every immigrant, in effect, under suspicion.