Immigration, Assimilation and Border Security

One of the most, if not the most, controversial issues under discussion today is our nation’s immigration policy. The assimilation of our immigrant population, as well as our border security are inextricably linked to the immigration issue.

Our immigration policy should serve our needs, not the needs of other countries or other populations. Our current system is a catastrophic failure and ironically encourages more illegal immigration while negatively impacting our border security. It is my belief we can’t have immigration reform without border security, and we can’t have border security without immigration reform. In other words, immigration reform and border security are mutually dependent, not mutually exclusive. To have one, we must have the other, and we must have both sooner rather than later.

For too long Republicans have been content to describe our immigration policy in bumper sticker terms, such as “build a fence”, “secure our borders” or “no amnesty”. I don’t disagree with any of those demands, but they have become cop-outs used by weak-kneed politicians to avoid actually having to take the risk of enumerating specific detailed proposals to reform immigration and secure our borders. Republicans need to offer a proposal, instead of just being against the proposals that others offer.

In June of 2012, the Republican Party of Texas did something bold. After a lengthy Friday night debate with 8,000 delegates present, and with several critical votes during that debate, Texas Republicans adopted by an overwhelming margin an immigration platform plank titled the “Texas Solution”, which advocated a guest worker program (not a path to citizenship). I encourage you to go to the Republican Party of Texas website, or web search “2012 Republican Party of Texas Report of the Platform Committee” and read the “Texas Solution” found on page 21 of our platform.

I was the only Republican elected official to speak in favor of the “Texas Solution” at the convention. Many of my elected colleagues privately expressed support, but told me that they just couldn’t take the risk. The one exception has been Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples, who as chair of the Southern Association of State Departments of Agriculture committee led that association to adopt their pro guest worker policy position. Todd later stated in the San Antonio Express News regarding deportation that “(N)o one should want a government big enough to round up that many people.”

If you would like an even more detailed narrative about my thoughts on immigration, as well as a selected history of immigration in Texas it can be found by clicking here.

As your next Lieutenant Governor, my policy will be…

  1. Support Voter ID
  2. Support English as the official language.
  3. Support a military presence on the border where and when it is necessary.
  4. Support a border fence where it is tactically necessary and does not infringe on the property rights of border property owners.
  5. Support the 2012 Texas Republican party platform immigration plank known as the “Texas Solution”.
  6. Oppose unconditional birthright citizenship.
  7. Oppose bilingual ballots, which are an impediment to assimilation of immigrants.
  8. Oppose amnesty as a component of a path to citizenship.
  9. Oppose the current immigration bill that recently passed the U.S. Senate. I suggest we delay passage of immigration reform until we have a Republican majority in both the House and the Senate.
  10. Oppose restrictions prohibiting law enforcement from asking about the immigration status of an individual during an arrest or detention related to criminal investigation or apprehension.