Bob's stance on immigration.
It seems that everyone I meet on the Campaign Trail wants to know where I stand on "The Immigration Issue". The two extremes of rounding up all illegal immigrants and then closing the borders like an iron curtain; and removing the title of "Citizen" from everybody, and make us all "Citizens of Earth".
The first extreme reminds most of the Nazis rounding up Jews and putting them to death, along with the Soviet Union building the Berlin Wall. This is not the answer. The United States was built on immigration, most of it legal, but even in the days of Ellis Island, there were people arriving on our shores with less than proper paperwork.
The second extreme invokes the memories of the John Lenin song. "Imagine". I for one, am not ready for One World Order and the Unity of Man. I love my country, and I don't want to see it become third world. The world and the nature of Man will not allow the Roman Empire to engulf the world. We have a hard time coming to any agreements with the country, let alone let the entire world vote on how much I should pay in taxes.
I have yet to run into anybody openly advocating either extreme. I trust I never will. So what is "the Answer"? Let me first outline what I see the situation is:
1 + When we talk of "Immigration" we are really mostly talking about "Illegal Immigration". Let's make that very clear right from the start. I have absolutely NO problem with legal immigration. My wife and daughter are both legal immigrants to this country. They are now active, honest, upright American Citizens. They share the reason the colonists left Europe for America in the first place + to build a better life for themselves and for their children. This is the American Dream. This is the America that the rest of the world aspires to. This is my America. This is my California.
2 + Illegal Immigration is Illegal. Those who enter the country without the proper paperwork, or stay in the country after their legal visa has expired, are breaking the law. If we like the law, if we don't like the law, that is for our elected officials in Washington to debate. The fact of the matter is + that is the law.
It is not up to cities to decide to violate the law and become "Sanctuary" cities. Those mayors who declare their cities sanctuaries should be arrested. That action is not one of the authorities that the City possesses. Churches, on the other hand, do have the authority to become a sanctuary. Not only for those poor in spirit, but also for those poor in documentation. Even with that, the church should be working to revise the law, not simply circumvent the law.
3 + Not all Illegal Immigrants come to California to do good. I have news for you + many people are bad people. The Illegal Immigrant population in the State of California alone is over 30%. There are many reliable estimates that for every criminal caught, convicted, and imprisoned, there are two more out on the streets still committing crimes. These are the illegal immigrants that do the most damage to the State.
4 + It is still illegal to employ illegal immigrants. Many people would have you believe that there are some jobs that Americans just won't take. The farmer has no choice but to hire illegal immigrants to get his crops harvested. Without these workers, our food system would collapse. This is a falsehood. My grandfather worked as a migrant worker. My uncle and my Mother have told me the stories of how the family moved from one orchard to another following the harvest road. It is a tough life, with very low pay, but Americans will do it. The biggest reason why most Americans won't do those jobs is that they can make more money through welfare without doing any work. We don't need Immigration reform as much as we need welfare reform.
5 + The legal immigration system is broken. If you think of Immigration as a flow of water into the country, legal immigration is a bottle neck in that flow. From time to time, Congress seeks to open or close that bottle neck, depending upon the will of the people. Currently, the bottle neck is tiny. Far fewer people make it through the legal process than would want to. Those who cannot work the system, and don't believe they have time to wait, often are tempted to go "TNT" (a Philipino term for without papers) and build their lives anew. I think that we all know at least one friend or relative who is "low on paperwork". Many of these people are good, hard working people, they just don't want to struggle in their own country while waiting for what seems a lifetime for the US Government to decide they are worthy. I know of one friend who petitioned to have her Mother brought over. The process took more than 20 years. Just as the petition was granted, the Mother died. She didn't get to live those last 20 years with her Mother.
So what is my answer?
1 + Fix the immigration system.
Hire more agents. I remember very clearly waiting in line at 3:00 am outside the immigration office to get a number to talk to an official. Just as in business, when demand is high, you can increase your price or increase your product. The government should not increase the price of immigration. Most people can just afford the minimal fees now. Increased cost will only force more people underground.
Revise the deportation process. The spouse, parent, or child of a US Citizen should not live in fear of deportation. Our immigration laws allow for these people to be processed. They should not have to live thousands of miles away while their paperwork meanders through the system. Additional agents will speed the process.
2 + Deport the criminals.
Once someone is convicted of a crime in the US, they should be immediately sent to their country. We can work with the governments of these countries to build prisons in their countries for these criminals to serve their time. It would be much cheaper for California tax payers to build and fund a prison in Mexico than to continue to build and maintain prisons in California.
3 + Enforce the laws that exist against employing illegal immigrants.
When you make it more expensive to hire cheap illegal workers, the wages for the legal workers will go up. This will increase taxes to the state, as many of these companies are not paying payroll taxes for these workers.
4 + Don't give "amnesty" to anybody. When you reward those who have broken the law, the people back in their home countries who were still afraid of the law, will see that they really should have taken the risk and gone TNT, will jump at the chance now. They know that if they come, they will be let in. If we do this, we might as well take the next logical step and remove the word "citizen" from our language. Borders will be meaningless. We will be one world, even if we don't admit it.
Please work with me to Save California!