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Where Do The Leading Presidential Candidates Stand On Immigration?
The other day, someone asked me which presidential candidate would be best, strictly on immigration reform views. Here is a nice little summary from a Reuters news story:
New York Sen. Hillary Clinton
Supports a guest worker program for immigrants if it does not undermine U.S. workers' wages and favors giving undocumented workers a way to become legal workers. Backed building border wall. Urges development of an employer verification system and higher penalties for employers who exploit illegal immigrants.
Former North Carolina Sen. John Edwards
Urges doubling the number of Border Patrol agents, installing surveillance technology to police the border and increasing enforcement against employers who hire illegal immigrants. Supports allowing illegal immigrants to become U.S. citizens if they avoid a criminal record, pay a fine and learn English. Against a guest worker program that does not include workplace safeguards.
Illinois Sen. Barack Obama
Backs additional personnel, infrastructure and technology to safeguard U.S. borders and ports. Urges reducing application fees and improving speed and accuracy of FBI background checks for immigrants. Supports a program in which illegal immigrants pay fines, learn English, not violate the law and go to the end of the line to become citizens. Backs creating a program for employers to verify an applicant's immigration status.
Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani
Supports building the border fence and maintaining 20,000 Border Patrol agents. Urges issuing a single biometric identification card to foreigners, creating a national database and removing those immigrants who have overstayed their visas. Backs deporting illegal immigrants who commit felonies and requiring immigrants to read, write and speak English. Against providing driver's licenses or similar identification to illegal immigrants.
Arizona Sen. John McCain
Initially supported temporary guest worker program for illegal immigrants but has since shifted his position to emphasize border security first.
Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney
Backs securing the border with a wall, fence or electronic surveillance. Urges creating a biometric documentation program and establishing a verification system. Supports an increase in legal immigration into the United States and opposes compromise on immigration amnesty. Opposes allowing illegal immigrants to get driver's licenses.
Former Tennessee Sen. Fred Thompson
Against providing any legal status to illegal immigrants and urges bolstering enforcement against them and their employers. Backs cutting off federal funds to cities that try to restrict communications with the Department of Homeland Security about an individual's immigration status. Urges finishing border wall by 2010, expanding Border Patrol to at least 25,000, making English the official U.S. language and improving the immigration process.
From Immigration-Law-Answers-Blog posted 2007-11-23.