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Public Statements

Issue Position: Immigration

Issue Position

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As a sovereign nation, we must control and secure our borders. It is troubling that the levels of illegal immigration continue to rise and that the Rule of Law is not being enforced. I believe we only encourage illegal immigration by discussing amnesty for the 12-20 million illegal immigrants living in the United States today. I adamantly oppose amnesty, regardless of the guise under which it is presented. Amnesty pardons immigration lawbreakers and rewards them with the objective of their crime--citizenship. I believe we must tighten and strengthen our border control efforts. I have traveled to the southern border and have seen the unprotected areas that allow the free flow of illegal immigrants into our country. Allowing illegal immigration to flourish is a threat to our national security.

I have seen the fences being built on the border by U.S. Customs and Border Patrol. I have watched illegal immigrants scale these fences and easily move between the United States and Mexico. To address this, I have designed a concrete border wall proposal. I have 35 years of experience in the earth-moving, drainage and concrete construction business, which gives me the background to design an effective wall. My concrete wall would function as both a human and vehicle barrier, inspired by the success of the concrete wall in Israel. My design is cost efficient, easy to construct and impenetrable. This design would funnel illegal traffic to our ports of entry, where it can be reasonably controlled by our nation's customs and border patrol agents.

In addition to a physical deterrent, I believe we must shut off the job magnets that encourage illegal immigrants to come to the United States. I have authored New IDEA, the Illegal Deduction Elimination Act, which would protect American jobs for American workers. New IDEA would make wages and benefits paid to illegal immigrants nondeductible for federal tax purposes. This would eliminate the incentive of hiring illegal workers to employ cheap labor. New IDEA would also make E-Verify permanent and provide "safe harbor" for employers who use this employment eligibility system. My legislation would also create an information sharing system between the Internal Revenue Service, the Department of Homeland Security and the Social Security Administration. By using an automated system to verify employment authorization, and by sharing this information amongst three federal agencies, false identification documents and illegal workers will be identified more easily.

In addition to border security and workplace enforcement, our nation must eliminate needless incentives that encourage illegal immigration and cost taxpayers significant amounts of money each year. I do not believe it is in the best interest of our nation to continue tolerating the practice of illegal aliens giving birth to children in the U.S. in order to obtain citizenship for the child, then moving back to their country of origin with the hopes of achieving uninhibited access to our country for as many family members as possible. This is why I have introduced H.R. 140, the Birthright Citizenship Act of 2011, to limit birthright citizenship to a child born in the United States to at least one parent who is a U.S. citizen or national, a legal permanent resident living in the United States, or an individual who is serving on active duty status in the U.S. Armed Forces.

As the Vice-Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Immigration, I will continue to support an immigration policy designed to enhance the economic, social and cultural well-being of the United States. Immigrants have made, and will continue to make, a valuable contribution to our nation. Through assimilation, immigrants will benefit from our shared American culture of individual freedom, personal responsibility, and patriotism. A major component of assimilation is being proficient in English. For centuries, the English language has been the uniting force in this great nation. Studies continue to show that those who know English get better jobs, earn higher wages and are less dependent on the government. For these reasons, I have authored the English Language Unity Act to make English the official language of the United States government.


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