Tom Tancredo on Immigration
Republican Representative (CO-6)
The presidential campaign has come down to less than a handful of viable candidates. Unfortunately several of them have abysmal records on immigration and can’t be trusted to do what is needed to preserve this country if they’re elected. My fear is that if I were to stay in this race my votes could be the factor in handing victory to a pro-amnesty politician. The stakes are too high to play that hand. And so I am ending my presidential campaign.
A: I’m not going to aid any more immigration into this country. I reject the idea, categorically, that there are jobs that, quote, “No American will take.” But am I going to feel sorry if a business has to increase its wages in order for somebody in this country to make a good living? No, I don’t feel sorry about that and I won’t apologize for it for a moment. And there are plenty of Americans who will do those jobs.
COX: Can we oppose amnesty in any circumstance?
COX: I oppose amnesty because it doesn’t work. It’s not going to solve the problem. It’s only going to encourage more illegal behavior.
TANCREDO: Listen, amnesty is the worst possible public policy you can ever have. It rewards illegal behavior, it encourages more of it, and it’s a slap in the face of every single person who as done it the right way. We should never, ever have amnesty.
COX: I oppose a guest worker program. We don’t want to create a second class of citizens in this country. We want people who come to America to ultimately be Americans. At the same time, we ought to make sure that we send the people home who have cut in line, but we’ve got to make sure that we bring the people in who are waiting in line, and waiting for the bureaucracy 10 or 15 years to get to this country legally.
TANCREDO: I’ll tell you another thing about guest worker programs. Guest worker programs is an insult to every American: that they are only coming for jobs no American will take. Right? Well, really what they are saying is--they are coming for jobs that no American will take for the price I can get an illegal alien to perform the job for. That’s the real issue. So, no more guest worker. We don’t need it. We certainly don’t need amnesty.
HCKABEE: Well, first of all, because I’ve listened to some of them. And it’s not the concern that people are coming here for opportunities or even that they’re illegal.
Q: Are some of the people who oppose illegals are in fact mean-spirited and racist?
TANCREDO: For how many months did my colleagues up here stay silent or were on the other side of it? You wonder why people are cynical about politics and politicians. But when it sounds like the people are getting uptight about this and we can make hay out of it, we’re all going to be the strongest supporters of secure borders that you ever saw in your life. Well, I’d like to see more than rhetoric. It’s got nothing to do with disliking people who are coming into this country. It’s got everything to do with the rule of law.
Tancredo said proponents of immigration reform have “the audacity to call ‘amnesty’ the modern day civil rights movement. He earned big applause for saying “There is no comparison” between the two movements.
He then closed with an anecdote highlighting what he said whites and blacks have in common--a language. He recalled the story of a white woman looking for crew socks in a store and could not find anyone who spoke english. She finally found a black woman who helped her. The black woman said, “I always knew something was going to bring us together. Who would have thought it was going to be a language?”
Tancredo said proponents of immigration reform have “the audacity to call ‘amnesty’ the modern day civil rights movement.
A: They are incredible and they are disastrous. I have consistently tried to impress upon the American public the seriousness of this issue. We’re not just talking about the number of jobs that we may be losing, or the number of kids that are in our schools and impacting our school system, or the number of people that are abusing our hospital system and taking advantage of the welfare system in this country--we’re not just talking about that. We’re talking about something that goes to the very heart of this nation-- whether or not we will actually survive as a nation. And here’s what I mean by that. What we’re doing here in this immigration battle is testing our willingness to actually hold together as a nation or split apart into a lot of Balkanized pieces.
TANCREDO: It means, number one, cut from the past. If you come here as an immigrant, great. If you come here legally, welcome. It means you cut your ties with the past, familial, & especially political ties with the country from which you came. But let’s be serious about this, you guys. We talk about all the immigration reform we want, and what it’s got to get down to is this: Are we ready for a timeout? Are we actually ready to say, “Enough is enough”? We have to stop all legal immigration except for people coming into this country as family members, immediate family members, and/or refugees. We have got to actually begin the process of assimilating people who have come in this great wave of immigration. The process of assimilation is not going on. How long will it take us to catch up? I’ll tell you this. It’ll take this long: until we no longer have to press 1 for English and 2 for any other language.
PAUL: I’m a no, because I am a strong supporter of the original intent
GIULIANI: When he called me up to endorse him, he got me on the phone, he said, “Will you endorse me?”, and I was too afraid to say no. I would say yes.
TANCREDO: Intimidating as he might be, I’m saying no.
A: There are literally scores of programs that we now operate to let people come into this country legally. The immigration program alone lets about 1.25 million people into this country every year, more than any other country, we take in legally through the immigration process. That’s just immigration. That’s not visas. H-2A visas, for agricultural work--there are no limits on those visas. You can have as many as you want. Bush is presenting it as if we do not have a guest worker program today, and we do. Bush is also suggesting--which I think borders on disingenuous--that the only way we can secure the border is to have a guest worker program. Baloney. We can secure our borders. We choose not to secure the border. We can do so, though.
A: I do not, and when he starts out saying, “you can’t deport 11 million to 20 million people.” The reality is you could. So people should not be allowed to just state that as an absolute fact. The reality, however, is you don’t have to. All you have you have to do is begin enforcing the law, especially against people who are hiring people who are here illegally, and you will see an attrition process that will reduce the number of illegal aliens in this country quite dramatically. And then the people will not go home voluntary, you do deport, because that’s the law, and yes, you can do it.
The more I learned about their plans and preparation, the more impressed I was. What struck me was not only the ambition and vision of the two founders, but the immense outpouring of patriotism by 1,000 volunteers. The other astonishing thing was the reaction of officialdom to this emerging civilian defense force, which came into existence only because the government failed to do its job.
More astonishing still was the reaction of Pres. Bush, who called the Minutemen "vigilantes" in March 2006. The Minutemen patriots would not need to devote their time & energies to this task if the president gave the Border Patrol the resources and the mandate to actually accomplish its mission.
In today’s America, immigrants are welcomed by a society intoxicated with the idea of multiculturalism. Today’s immigrants quickly become aware that there is no need to leave their old language or attachments behind because the only cause they will be required to espouse is allegiance to the ideology of radical multiculturalism.
I don’t know if we have become a nation of the same kind of self-indulgent hedonists that characterized the societies of past civilizations, but I do know that there is much here worth saving. To do that we must not only look at what it means to be American, but we must also notice how becoming an American has changed.
There is a small contingent, however, that does perform a law-enforcement duty. The objective of this group (the “enforcers”) is the enhancement of national security. When the enforcers’ director resigned, they were isolated and they became whistle-blowers. I sent an invitation for the head of the whistle-blower group to testify before my Immigration Reform Caucus.
My friend contacted the House Judiciary Committee to set up a meeting for the whistle-blowers to appear before staffers. Those staffers went to the Whit House to discuss ways to keep the agents from revealing the depth of the corruption in the immigration agency. The administration made it clear it did not want the information to come out for fear it would undermine the immigration guest worker program.
Our borders are porous because we lack the political will to close them. The amazing thing is we have the technology and resources to secure our border tomorrow, but we lack the will to do it.
Is it right that our borders allow the influx of millions of people to take the jobs of Americans? To force people either to work for less money than they were working for just a few years ago. To be unemployed? All in order to achieve political goals.
TANCREDO: I do. He sponsored a bill that would have given amnesty to everybody who’s here illegally. It would have required us to actually consult with Mexico as to whether or not we would build the fence along our southern border. If we pursue this path toward amnesty, it’s a disaster for the country.
McCAIN: I have never supported amnesty and never would. But the American people expect us to sit down and work this issue out together. That’s what I’ve been doing for a couple of years now. We are very close to an agreement, led by our president and his Cabinet, that will first secure our borders. Then we would have a temporary worker program that could only be valid through a tamper-proof biometric document. And then we would address the issue of the 12 million people who are already here.
ROMNEY: The key part of what I objected to in McCain-Kennedy is that they should not get any advantage by having come here illegally.
McCAIN: We’ve been working very hard for a couple of months with Democrats and Republicans, led by the president and his Cabinet, to come up with a comprehensive solution and resolution of this terrible problem of illegal immigration. One thing we would all agree on, the status quo is not acceptable. We have to secure our borders. But we also need a temporary worker program, and we have to dispose of the issue of 12 million people who are in this country illegally. This issue needs to be addressed comprehensively.
A: Because guest-worker equals amnesty! A guest-worker program, like the one proposed by the President and some members of Congress would give American jobs to illegal aliens. A person’s first act upon coming to our country should not be an illegal entry! Furthermore, we should not reward their illegal entry with the benefits many illegals now receive, including free education and medical care paid for by American citizens’ tax dollars!
The president said he was going to create a program but did not want to call it amnesty because that has a bad connotation with the public. No matter how many ways he wants to phrase it, no matter how many times he says he is against amnesty, the truth is, his plan is an amnesty plan.
The plan clearly offers amnesty in two respects. First, it protects persons who have broken the law from the punishment prescribed by law (deportation) while offering them the privilege that few get (living and working in the US). Second, does anyone really believe that, at the end of six years, the immigrants will go home or that Congress will have the political will to make them do so?
TANCREDO: No, I would not advertise in Spanish. Believe me when I tell you this--the preservation of the English language is important for us for a lot of reasons. It is the glue that keeps a country together, any country. Bilingual countries don’t work, and we should not encourage it. McCain’s immigration bill codifies Pres. Clinton’s executive order that said all papers produced by the government have to be in various languages. No, it is absolutely wrong. English is the language of this country, and you know what, we should not be ashamed of that. It’s a good thing and it holds us all together regardless of where we come from regardless of our backgrounds, our histories, it doesn’t matter. We need that thing to hold us together.
McCAIN: Well, first of all, muchas gracias.
A little-discussed constitutional provision actually allows all of this to happen legally through what’s called birthright citizenship. Though the provision was not authored with the intent of granting automatic citizenship to children of persons in the country illegally, courts throughout the years have held that it does.
The 14th Amendment starts, “All persons born or naturalized in the US... are citizens of the US.” Written in the immediate aftermath of the Civil War, the law’s intent was to prevent states from denying citizenship to newly freed slaves.
The loophole has become well known. The children born to illegal aliens are called “anchor babies” because once they are born in the US, they serve as an anchor to keep themselves & their families firmly (and legally) in the country.
My answer to the problem of border enforcement is simple: if we’re not devoting enough resources to it, then devote more resources to it. We should be spending billions more than we are. It is Congress’s duty to do whatever it takes to protect and defend our borders. If we can’t stem the flow of millions of illegal aliens, how can we possibly hope to stop terrorists from infiltrating the country?
But I cannot pretend that a border-length fence will completely eliminate illegal immigration. Still, a fence will go a long way toward accomplishing that goal.
We have the technology and resources to secure our borders tomorrow. It is a canard for politicians to say it’s impossible. What they are really saying is: I choose not to defend and secure our borders because there are political ramifications that I fear. It is those fears that put the life of every American in mortal danger.
The only reason a Mexican citizen would need a matricula consular card from the Mexican Embassy is if they are in this country illegally. The cards are easy to fabricate. Authorities have arrested an Iranian national with a Mexican matricul consular card in his own name.
But the State Dept. views it more “diplomatically.” In 2005, a State Department official said that while State does not defend the use of the cards, it is concerned that limitations on the cards would provide retaliation from other countries.
Mexican consulates have issued 1.2 million cards & say cards are only issued to citizens who appear in person with acceptable ID. Sometimes applicants need only convince issuing officers that they are who they say they are.
In debunking these sensible reform measures, the Wall Street Journal resorted to “the sky is falling” arguments: “Tancredo has done everyone a favor by stating plainly the immigration rejectionists’ endgame--turn the US into the world’s largest gated community.”
Proponents support voting YES because:
It is obvious there is no more defining issue in our Nation today than stopping illegal immigration. The most basic obligation of any government is to secure the Nation's borders. One issue in which there appears to be a consensus between the Senate and the House is on the issue of building a secure fence. So rather than wait until comprehensive legislation is enacted, we should move forward on targeted legislation which is effective and meaningful. The legislation today provides over 700 miles of two-layered reinforced fencing, and for the rest of the border provides a virtual fence, via integrated surveillance technology.
Opponents support voting NO because:
Just to build the fence is going to cost us at least $7 billion. Where is the money coming from to pay for it? How much is it going to cost to maintain this 700-mile fence? Who is going to do it? This bill contains no funding.
This bill also ignores real enforcement measures, like hiring more Border Patrol personnel, and instead builds a Berlin Wall on our southern border. So long as employers need workers in this country, and while our immigration systems impede rather than facilitate timely access of willing workers to those opportunities, undocumented immigration will never be controlled.
Walls, barriers, and military patrols will only force those immigrants to utilize ever more dangerous routes and increase the number of people who die in search of an opportunity to feed and clothe their families.
None of the funds made available by this Act may be used to provide a foreign government information relating to the activities of an organized volunteer civilian action group, operating in the State of California, Texas, New Mexico, or Arizona, unless required by international treaty.
OFFICIAL CONGRESSIONAL SUMMARY: To limit the issuance of student and diversity immigrant visas to aliens who are nationals of Saudi Arabia, countries that support terrorism, or countries not cooperating fully with United States antiterrorism efforts.
SPONSOR'S INTRODUCTORY REMARKS: Rep. PAUL: The US remains vulnerable to terrorist attacks more than a year after the tragedy of 9/11. Our borders remain porous--a virtual revolving door and welcome mat for those who would seek to harm us. This was never more evident than when news broke some time ago that the INS had actually renewed the visas for several of the 9/11 hijackers after the attack had taken place. We cannot prevent terrorism if we cannot keep terrorists out of our country.
This bill will deny student and "diversity" visas to anyone coming from a country currently on the State Department's list of terrorism-sponsoring countries. It may seem shocking that citizens from these countries can even still receive these visas, but it is true. We must put a lock on this revolving door if we are going to protect Americans from the continuing threat of terrorism on our soil.
Further, it is time we face reality regarding Saudi Arabia. We must remember that most of the 9/11 hijackers were Saudi nationals. Also, when al-Qaeda supporters were rounded up from Afghanistan, reports showed that of the 158 prisoners, more than 100 were Saudi nationals. With such an evident level of involvement from Saudi nationals in these activities, it is quite obvious that the Saudi government is not doing all it can, or all it should, in resolving this urgent problem. Therefore, Saudi citizens will also be denied student and "diversity" visas to the United States under this bill.
LEGISLATIVE OUTCOME:Referred to House Subcommittee on Immigration & Border Security; never came to a vote.
The Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) is a national, non-profit, public interest membership organization of concerned citizens united by their belief in the need for immigration reform. Founded in 1979, FAIR believes that the U.S. can and must have an immigration policy that is non-discriminatory and designed to serve the environmental, economic, and social needs of our country.
FAIR seeks to improve border security, to stop illegal immigration, and to promote immigration levels consistent with the national interest—more traditional rates of about 300,000 a year.
With more than 70,000 members nationwide, FAIR is a non-partisan group whose membership runs the gamut from liberal to conservative.
The ratings are based on the votes the organization considered most important; the numbers reflect the percentage of time the representative voted the organization's preferred position.
OnTheIssues.org interprets the 2005-2006 USBC scores as follows:
U.S. Border Control, founded in 1988, is a non-profit, tax-exempt, citizen's lobby. USBC is dedicated to ending illegal immigration by securing our nation's borders and reforming our immigration policies. USBC [works with] Congressmen to stop amnesty; seal our borders against terrorism and illegal immigration; and, preserve our nation's language, culture and American way of life for future generations.
Our organization accepts no financial support from any branch of government. All our support comes from concerned citizens who appreciate the work we are doing to seal our borders against drugs, disease, illegal migration and terrorism and wish to preserve our nation's language, culture and heritage for the next generations.
A bill to provide that Executive Order 13166 shall have no force or effect, and to prohibit the use of funds for certain purposes.
Be it enacted that Executive Order 13166, 'Improving Access to Services for Persons with Limited English Proficiency' (August 16, 2000), is null and void and shall have no force or effect.
On August 11, 2000, the President signed Executive Order 13166. The Executive Order requires Federal agencies to examine the services they provide, identify any need for services to those with limited English proficiency (LEP), and develop and implement a system to provide those services so LEP persons can have meaningful access to them.
This bill declares English as the official language of the United States, establishes a uniform English language rule for naturalization.
OFFICIAL CONGRESSIONAL SUMMARY:
EXCERPTS FROM BILL:
|2010 Governor, House and Senate candidates on Immigration:||Tom Tancredo on other issues:|
in 112th Congress:
in 112th Congress:
in 111th Congress:
NY-25:Ann Marie Buerkle