It is estimated that currently more than 12 million illegal immigrants are living within the United States with as many as 300,000 crossing our borders each year. We need to fix this broken system.
It is imperative that we begin our efforts to stop illegal immigration by securing our nation's borders. As it currently stands more than 5 years from the horrendous attacks of 9/11 we are still short on resources to stop the flow of intruders into our country. That is why I support proposals for increased board patrol agents and for the technology and equipment necessary for these agents to prevent people from entering our country illegally.
As we know, border enforcement alone will not solve the problem. There are many thousands of undocumented workers that enter our country looking for work. Even though it is illegal to knowingly hire workers without documentation, there is an incentive to hire cheap labor with lax enforcement of employment laws. In order to fix this problem we must improve workplace enforcement of our current employment laws.
I know this is a huge undertaking that will take support from both sides. I will oppose any proposal that amounts to amnesty or rewards illegal behavior. Our country has a rich tradition built upon the hard work of immigrant citizens from all over the world, and we welcome legal immigration. Out of respect for our laws and those who have followed them, I will continue to work hard to ensure that American citizenship is reserved for those who play by the rules.