Immigration has become one of the most contentious issues facing us today, and it raises legal, moral, economic and foreign policy issues. There are no easy or simple answers. We believe it is important to brush aside past partisan gamesmanship to find solutions that strengthen America, recognize our proud immigrant tradition, keep the economy strong, and keep our citizens safe and our borders secure.
We believe that the core elements of President George W. Bush’s immigration reform proposals were correct: effective border security, a functioning and humane guest worker program, and a pathway to earned legal status for the undocumented. Because Dreamers came here through no fault of their own, they should be allowed to stay in the United States and be given a special path to citizenship.
In accordance with the law, people who are here illegally will continue to be subject to deportation, but that process should not be driven by politics or abused to the point that deportations soar. Commonsense should reign, and focusing on individuals who pose a threat to the nation and citizens should be our priority.
We have no objection to a physical structure on the U.S.-Mexico border to help reduce illegal entry. However, instead of a solid wall we prefer to see a combination of increased patrols, strategic fencing and the use of new technologies, such as motion sensors. Our recommendations align with those given by many professionals from the U.S. Border Patrol.
On the controversial issue of “sanctuary cities,” we do not believe that a local municipality should actively thwart the enforcement of federal immigration laws. However, we do not believe this is happening to any significant degree despite what one hears on talk radio and from some elected officials. The sanctuary city debate is an unnecessary and disruptive distraction that should be pushed to the background so that effective, commonsense reforms can be developed.
Finally, we strongly oppose efforts to limit legal immigration, as this would seriously damage the economy, harm productivity and innovation, and run counter to the proud American tradition of opening our doors to those who want both a better life and to help build a stronger America.