The immigration issue is one that is quite difficult politically for conservative candidates as any compromise is seen as total surrender on the issue, while the reality is that the issue can’t magically be addressed through instant mass deportation via transporter and Terminator 2000’s or laser-sharks covering every inch border. How do we find a plan that satisfies the goal of fitting within conservative values while also dealing with the difficult and complex realities that the failed system has created? The below plan is designed to do just that through four core concepts:
1) Address the reality that a solution will have to address some key realities created by decades of a broken system deal with those problems. Specific difficulties include a) Dealing with the parents of anchor babies, such babies being natural born citizens under the Constitution and tearing their families apart creates more difficulties than it resolves; b) dealing firmly but fairly with people who are in the United States illegally, but are productive members of our economy (they do exist); and c) dealing with criminals and security risks within the system.
2) Fixing the current broken system in an affordable manner so that lack of enforcement cannot lead to a repeat of the problem.
3) Deal with government entitlements going to those who should not qualify and illegal voting issues.
Finally, it addresses the key concern for those who have gone through the process legally. People aren’t being allowed to cut in line. The closest to line-cutting that occurs in this plan is six years of honorable military service, which in my mind deserves such consideration.
Immigration Plan for Conservatives
- People living without proper authorization in the United States at the time of passage of this legislation must register with the Department of Homeland Security within 90 days of the passage of the legislation. This includes all persons without current legal permission.
- Upon registration, such people, who do not have serious criminal records or pose security risks, will be able to select two options:
- Immediately and voluntarily return to their home-country with their immigration files specifically annotated that they willingly returned and are thus eligible to re-enter the United States once proper permissions are granted through normal channels. Such persons will be able to apply for Citizenship upon such re-entry without any negative repercussions from their previous illegal entry into the United States.
- Upon confirmation of eligibility, be granted Permeant Residence Status with the additional caveat that they may never become a Citizen of the United States. Additionally, such persons shall not qualify for federal entitlement programs such as Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid. Those who qualify for acceptance into to a branch of the Armed Services may eliminate these restrictions through honorable discharge after at least six years of service.
- Any person who is found in the United States without proper authorization after 90 days from the passage of the legislation shall be arrested and held without bond until all legal proceedings relating to said person have concluded. The sole exception shall be that a person who has no pending criminal charges may waive such proceedings and be released across the border to their home nation or other nation that will accept them. A person who has no nation willing to accept them shall not qualify for this exception.
- Any person who is not a citizen of the United States who registers for or votes in an election for public office shall be guilty of a crime punishable by not less than one nor more than five years of incarceration, and shall have all legal status in the United States revoked, up to and including permanent residency. Such a person would then be subject to provision 3) above.
- All federal law enforcement officers shall have jurisdiction and a mandate to investigate and enforce immigration related offenses, including the arrest of persons known to be in the United States without legal status.
As you can see the key to the Plan is paragraph 2. If you want to stay legally in the United States you need to immediately register and you need to immediately decide 1) that you will leave the country voluntarily and not return under the normal legal paths; or 2) to be allowed to stay with significant caveats. This is not amnesty, as there are significant repercussions for choosing option 2, and the only real “path to citizenship” for a person who was illegal but stays in the country is significant and successful military service. Such service would result in the person learning about the beauty of American culture and being prepared to live as a part of the culture. If you cannot or choose not to serve, then you are allowed to stay but you may never become a citizen and never participate in government entitlement programs.
Paragraph 3) is a fix to the enforcement mechanism. This is the Sherriff Joe provision. The real problem with the system is that illegal aliens who are discovered and arrested are immediately granted bond and given a bus ticket. This stops that. If you are here illegally you are held until you are returned to your home country or your case is heard by a judge. In most cases, people will take the option to return home unless they have a legitimate claim for asylum (in which case we can’t and generally shouldn’t deport them).
Paragraph 4) should be self-explanatory and the liberals who insist voter fraud doesn’t occur can’t really protest this one.
Paragraph 5) makes it harder for a President who doesn’t want the laws enforce to stop the enforcement. All federal law enforcement have a mandate and jurisdiction to enforce. No more “I called I.C.E. and they didn’t come to get him so I cut him loose.”