“There is a candidate that meets several criteria that are critical... He also has by the way a solid record that matches his rhetoric... I am endorsing Governor Mitt Romney for President... He is the best hope for our cause.”
Tom Tancredo, perhaps the best known and most respected leader in the effort to stop illegal immigration, but just one of many who endorsed Mitt Romney
Well worth watching — The whole speech, which starts at 27:50, provides clarity and details.
A few excerpts:
(Starting with background commentary in small print - click to show that text)
“For two years this president had huge majorities in the house and senate. He was free to pursue any policy he pleased. But he did nothing to advance a permanent fix for our broken immigration system. Nothing. Instead he failed to act until facing a tough reelection, and trying to secure your vote. Last week the president finally offered a temporary measure. He called it a stop-gap measure, that he seems to think will be just enough to get him through the election. After 3 1/2 years of putting every issue from loan guarantees to his donors, to cash for clunkers-- putting all those things before immigration-- now the president has been ceased with an overwhelming need to do what he could have done on day one but didn't. I think you deserve better.
“Some people have asked if I will let stand the president's executive order. The answer is that I will put in place my own long term solution that will replace and supersede the president's temporary measure... I'll work with republicans and democrats to implement a long term solution.
“I want you to also know this: I will prioritize efforts that strengthen legal immigration, and make it more transparent and easier. And I'm going to address the problem of illegal immigration in a civil and resolute manner...
“Let me speak about some of the guidelines that I will use in putting together that policy:
“And as you've heard me say many times, it's critical that we redouble our efforts to secure the borders... and making it harder to illegally overstay a visa. We should field enough border patrol agents, complete a high tech fence, and implement an improved exit verification system.
“Our immigration system should help promote strong families as well, not keep them apart. Our nation benefits when moms and dads and their kids are all living together under the same roof. But today, too many families are caught in a broken system that costs them time and money and entangles them in excessive red-tape. For those seeking the right way, that kind of nightmare has to end...
“As president, I'd reallocate green cards to those seeking to keep their families under one roof.
“And we'll exempt from caps the spouses and minor children of legal, permanent residents.
“And we'll eliminate other forms of bureaucratic red-tape, that keep families from coming together.
“Immigration reform is not just a moral imperative, it's also an economic necessity...
“I'll work with states and employers to update our temporary worker visa program so that it meets our economic needs...
“We must also make legal immigration more attractive than illegal immigration, so that people are rewarded for waiting patiently in line.
“That's why my administration will establish a strong employment verification system, so that every business can know with confidence that the people it hired are legally eligible for employment.
“We can find common ground here. And we've got to.”
— Mitt Romney's address to the National Association of Latino Elected Officials
Campaign Site's Statement
“America is a nation of immigrants. We are not a nation bound by ethnicity, but one bound by the pristine idea that all people are endowed by their Creator with the unalienable rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness... Welcoming newcomers who share our ideals and work hard to secure a better life for themselves and their families is part of our heritage. A strong legal immigration system is an integral component of what makes America exceptional.
“But today, our immigration system is broken.
“A porous border allows illegal immigrants to enter the United States, violent cartel members and terrorists possibly among them...
“Mitt Romney believes that legal immigration is a boon to America. He will strengthen our immigration system so that it benefits the U.S. economy, ensures our security, bolsters the rule of law, and carries on America’s tradition as a nation of legal immigrants...
“The United States needs to attract and retain job creators from wherever they come. Foreign-born residents with advanced degrees start companies, create jobs, and drive innovation at an especially high rate. While lawful immigrants comprise about 8 percent of the population, immigrants start 16 percent of our top-performing, high-technology companies, hold the position of CEO or lead engineer in 25 percent of high-tech firms, and produce over 25 percent of all patent applications filed from the United States.
“• Raise visa caps for highly skilled workers
“• Grant permanent residency to eligible graduates with advanced degrees in math, science, and engineering
“Mitt Romney will protect legal immigration and the 4.5 million who are waiting in line to enter the United States legally by taking a strong stand against illegal immigration. He believes that illegal immigration must end and has a proven track record of advancing that goal.
“• Secure The Border
“Mitt Romney will complete a high-tech fence and provide the necessary number of border patrol to finally secure our southern border.
“• Turn Off The Magnets...
“• Enforce The Law
“• Oppose Amnesty
“Mitt Romney opposes amnesty because he believes that it acts as a magnet encouraging illegal immigration. The last amnesty law passed in 1986 granted legal status to 2.7 million illegal immigrants. In the decades since, the illegal immigrant population has quadrupled.”
"In 1994, when he tried to unseat Ted Kennedy, he ran against higher taxes and government-run health care, and for school choice, a balanced budget amendment, welfare reform, and "tougher measures to stop illegal immigration." He was no Rockefeller Republican even then."
"The Mitt Romney who hit the campaign trail in 2002...was now a media star - People magazine would soon name him one of the 50 Most Beautiful People in the World... He favored the death penalty and an initiative petition to replace bilingual education with English immersion;"
(Mitt Romney's platform is the same as it was in the past. It is epitomized by his record as noted in the remaining sections.)
COMPARE ALL CANDIDATES' VIEWS:
Ann Coulter does a thoughtful article on the immigration stance of republican presidential candidates.
“Just as Americans ought to be able to learn the perils of a welfare state by looking at Greece, we ought to be able to learn the perils of illegal immigration by looking at California.
“Massive legal and illegal immigration has already so changed the California electorate that no Republican can be elected statewide anymore. Not so long ago, this was a state that produced great Republican governors and senators like Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, S.I. Hayakawa and Pete Wilson.
“If even Carly Fiorina and Meg Whitman, two bright, attractive, successful female business executives -- one pro-life and one pro-choice -- can't win a statewide election in California spending millions of their own dollars in the middle of the 2010 Republican sweep, it's buenas noches, muchachos.
“And yet, almost all Republican presidential candidates support some form of amnesty for illegals in order to appeal to the business lobby.
“Among the most effective measures against illegal immigration is E-Verify, the Homeland Security program that gives employers the ability to instantly confirm that their employees' Social Security numbers are legitimate. It is more than 99 percent accurate, and no employee is denied a job without an opportunity to challenge the records.
“Although wildly popular with Americans -- including Hispanic Americans -- the business lobby hates E-Verify. Employers like hiring non-Americans because they can pay illegal aliens less and ignore state and federal employment laws.
“Any candidate who opposes E-Verify is not serious about illegal immigration. If anything, E-Verify ought to be made mandatory to get a job, to get welfare and to vote.
“Kowtowing to business (while pretending to kowtow to Hispanics), Paul, Perry and Santorum oppose E-Verify. As a senator, Rick Santorum voted against even the voluntary use of E-Verify...
“Following his latest guru, Helen Krieble, Newt Gingrich is for amnesty, combined with second-class status for illegals. Instead of giving illegal aliens green cards, Newt proposes giving them "red cards" so they can stay, take American jobs, have children, receive welfare benefits, attend public schools -- and eventually be granted amnesty. The Republican primaries will be over before most voters realize what Newt's "red card" scheme entails.
“Only Michele Bachmann and Mitt Romney aren't trying to sneak through amnesty for illegal aliens. Both support E-Verify.”
"The prospects for a controversial proposal to allow roughly 150,000 undocumented immigrants to obtain drivers' licenses in Massachusetts darkened considerably this week as Gov. Mitt Romney came out against the idea and the bill's sponsor acknowledged that 'it doesn't look as if the legislation could become law.' ...
" 'Those who are here illegally should not receive tacit support from our government that gives an indication of legitimacy,' the governor said, echoing arguments that opponents have voiced in the commonwealth and in other states considering similar license measures. 'If they are here illegally, they should not get driver's licenses,' he said." (2003)
"A bill currently being considered by the Legislature would provide in-state tuition at our public colleges and university to individuals who are in the United States illegally. That is wrong. Because a family breaks the law, that should not entitle them to a taxpayer subsidy. Enactment of this legislation would encourage more illegal immigration and send the wrong message to those immigrants who played by the rules. Governor Romney vetoed a similar provision last June, and he is prepared to do so again." (November 2005)
“Mitt Romney seems to have a similar patriotic sense of what it means to be an American, and presents it and himself well. He stopped special benefits for illegal immigrants here, where he had some authority.”
1. Romney proposes/plans efforts to end illegal employment
In June 2006, the governor proposes a mandatory employment verification plan, and announces a plan to allow troopers to check the legal status of people. Over the next several months, he reiterates proposal and works on plan.
2. Boston Globe plots to politically embarrass the guv
Globe assigns reporters to spy on Gov's lawn care workers for months. Globe sends reporters on an international trip to find former lawn care workers out of the country. Globe reporters follow lawn care workers to their homes then interrogate them.
3. Globe reports the dismal results of large effort
The Globe reports Romney hired legitimate company run by a legal immigrant who claimed that his employees were legal, but the Globe found 3 employees covering a ten year span that were not legal.
4. Globe reports story in a negative manner
Globe readers slam Globe, defend Romney.
5. Romney says incident proves his plan is needed
He continues to promote an end to illegal immigration including employee verification.
6. Round two
Company promises to only use legal immigrants and retains job, but then is caught still using two illegal immigrants and is fired.
1. Romney proposes/plans efforts to end illegal employment
After immigration officials arrest nine people selling fake ID cards (Boston Globe - Jun 14, 2006), federal authorities arrest 150 immigrants in New England, many with criminal histories such as membership in a gang (Boston Globe - Jun 15, 2006), and other bad immigration news, Governor Romney and state legislatures take action:
“After the Globe reported that some contractors on state-funded construction projects have apparently employed undocumented workers, [Democrat Attorney General] Reilly said it was his responsibility to protect workers, not crack down on employers.
“In the wake of the story, Romney said he would ask the US government to grant State Police the authority to enforce federal immigration laws...
“In describing his proposal, Romney said his intention was to make Massachusetts a less desirable place for undocumented immigrants to live and work.”
“Governor Mitt Romney also called for a federal solution. He said the federal government needs to develop a system where residency and citizenship documents are tamper-proof, and employers can tap into a nationwide verification network to check on employees' immigration status...
“The best way to prevent undocumented immigrants from finding work in Massachusetts is to make the state inhospitable to them, Romney said, citing his veto of a bill granting in-state tuition to undocumented immigrants.”
“Employers with state contracts would be required to make sure their workers have valid Social Security numbers by checking a federal online database under a bill proposed yesterday by Senate Republicans to combat illegal immigration...
“Governor Mitt Romney has also not seen the bill introduced by fellow Republicans but supported the idea in principle, said Eric Fehrnstrom, his spokesman.”
“You brought up immigration. Can you lay out your plans for that?
“The first thing we did in Massachusetts was to secure our southern border with Connecticut. Sorry, I'll be serious now. I do agree it makes sense to build a fence to have a barrier between our nation and another nation. But at the same time, the only really effective deterrent against illegal immigration will be an employment verification system, with a tamper-proof card that can be verified by employers before they hire people...
“I would like to solve the problem of illegal entry into the country and solve the employment verification system before we expand a guest worker program... I would penalize employers who hire people who did not have a card and who had not verified that card through the employment verification system.”
Globe assigns reporters to spy on Gov's lawn care workers for months. Globe sends reporters on an international trip to find former lawn care workers out of the country. Globe reporters follow lawn care workers to their homes then interrogate them:
“The Globe received a tip in July alleging that Romney was using illegal immigrants to landscape his property. Reporters then observed the lawn service workers outside Romney's house more than a dozen times, sometimes as frequently as twice a week.
“Reporters tracked down four current and former employees of the company at their homes in Chelsea and in Guatemala. All had landscaped Romney's property while working for Community Lawn Service with a Heart, and their tenure ranged from one worker who had joined the company just a month ago to another who had worked there 10 years...”
3. Globe reports the dismal results of the large effort
The Globe reports Romney hired legitimate company run by a legal immigrant who claimed that his employees were legal, but the Globe found 3 employees covering a ten year span that were not legal:
“Asked by a reporter yesterday about his use of Community Lawn Service with a Heart, Romney, who was hosting the Republican Governors Association conference in Miami, said, "Aw, geez," and walked away.
“Several hours later, his spokesman, Eric Fehrnstrom, provided the Globe with a statement saying that the governor knows nothing about the immigration status of the landscaping workers, and that his dealings were with Saenz [the company owner], who is a legal immigrant from Colombia.
“Fehrnstrom said that Romney would look into the matter further...
“Saenz asserted that all the workers he used were in the United States legally...
“ "I don't need to tell them to show me documents," he said. "I know who they are, and they are legal." ...
“Reporters tracked down four current and former employees of the company at their homes in Chelsea and in Guatemala. All had landscaped Romney's property while working for Community Lawn Service with a Heart, and their tenure ranged from one worker who had joined the company just a month ago to another who had worked there 10 years...
“Of the four interviewed, only one said he was in the United States legally, showing a reporter his Social Security card and a Massachusetts driver's license, which the reporter checked against public databases to verify its authenticity. The other workers acknowledged they had no genuine documents, though some said they purchased fake documents...
“The worker in Copado said a state trooper stationed in Romney's driveway once inquired about his immigration status, about six months ago. Saenz, the company owner, who was at the property at the time, told the trooper that the worker was in the country legally, but had forgotten his papers, the worker told the Globe. The trooper never inquired again, said the worker, who repeatedly returned to the governor's property but avoided the trooper. Saenz told reporters he did not recall the incident...”
“Two public agencies said yesterday they are reconsidering their relationship with a landscaping company following a Globe story yesterday reporting that illegal immigrants were employed by the company, which also maintains the grounds of Governor Mitt Romney's Belmont home...
“City Manager Jay Ash said Chelsea officials will "certainly be looking into" the possibility that local tax dollars may have gone to illegal immigrants. The city has a contract with the lawn service through next April to cut grass at seven public schools and a separate contract with the same firm to cut the lawns at City Hall and a public park.
“Ash said he does not believe the city had a legal obligation or even the right to check whether Saenz's employees were legally working in the country...”
“No doubt a fair and balanced journal like the Globe has also spent months and made an international effort to research the immigration status of the folks who cut [Governor-elect] Patrick's grass. I'll expect that story in tomorrow's paper.
“The hypocrisy, the pettiness, and the vendetta-driven nature of this story are beyond belief.
“HARRY FORBES Wrentham
“I'm more fed up with the Globe than with our governor. Illegal immigrants work on his lawn? Shocking! He didn't ask them, as they blew leaves around, for their green cards and IDs? Dereliction of duty!
“JAMES CHARLES ROY Newburyport
“THE LAST I heard , it was the Globe's practice to specify illegal immigrants as undocumented immigrants to eliminate the crass connotations of the term "illegal." Or are such policies meant to be suspended to embarrass an individual or attack an ideology that the Globe is in opposition with?
“THE RECENT news story about apparently illegal immigrants employed by the landscaping company that tends Mitt Romney's yard seemed to suggest that he was at least partly to blame for this. But, the consumer, in this case the governor, is in no way responsible for business practices that go on behind the scenes. In fact, if the governor had asked the workers in question if they were illegal, he could have actually been sued under federal law for discrimination...
“Steven A. Camarota is director of research at the Center for Immigration Studies in Washington, D.C.”
“In one of his final official statements as chairman of the Massachusetts GOP, outgoing Chairman Darrell Crate blasted the Boston Globe for its stories on illegal immigrants doing landscaping work and Gov. Mitt Romney’s Belmont residence, accusing the Globe of deliberately omitting information provided by the governor’s office in the interest of juicing up the story:
“Crate’s statement, issued over the weekend:
“For two consecutive days, the Boston Globe has refused to include statements from Governor Romney’s spokesman in its articles concerning a Massachusetts company hired by the Governor. Notably omitted is the fact that the Governor has supported an employer verification system that would allow companies to determine the legal status of their workers.
“While refusing to run the statement by the Governor’s spokesman, Eric Fehrnstrom, the Globe did see fit to run statements criticizing Governor Romney from the Democratic National Committee and the Massachusetts Immigrant Advocacy Coalition, both of which attack the Governor for not offering solutions. Clearly a statement from the Governor’s spokesman that highlights the particularly relevant solution in this matter — employer verification — should have been included in the story, if there was any interest in fairness and balance.
“The Globe reporters also refused to include in their Friday article a response from Fehrnstrom that noted that the standard the Globe applied to Governor Romney would mean that every Globe subscriber would be responsible for confirming that the person delivering his or her Globe was permitted to work in the United States.”
“Squaring the Boston Globe has learned that Massachusetts Governor-elect Deval Patrick has taken delivery of his morning newspaper from suspected illegal immigrants. Patrick, an early riser and Boston Globe subscriber, has possibly also waved and said “Gracias” to his Boston Globe carrier when picking up his paper at 5:30 AM in the driveway of his Milton home. Patrick may also have tipped his carrier directly with cash or through a tipping program for newspaper carriers administered by the Boston Globe...
“The story of Deval Patrick’s possible encounter with illegal immigrants is part of a recent newspaper reporting trend. The issue of illegal immigrant laborers has been tricky and sometimes damaging to political figures. Last Friday, the Boston Globe disclosed that a firm named Community Lawn Service with a Heart had used at least four illegal immigrants to provide groundskeeping services at the Belmont home of outgoing Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney.
“Sadly, today nobody knows the legal status of the hundreds of immigrants who deliver the Boston Globe. However Squaring the Boston Globe is certain that the dedicated professionals in the Boston Globe newsroom, who are now alerted to this situation, will investigate the legal status of these newspaper carriers with the same zeal and determination that they showed in the case of Romney’s “contracted” illegal immigrants. When they have completed their usual thorough job of investigative journalism, the public will know for certain whether Deval Patrick has taken his copy of the Boston Globe from the hand of an illegal immigrant.
“Full disclosure: PCF has also delivered newspapers to Squaring the Boston Globe. All the Globe carriers who have served Squaring the Boston Globe have been immigrants. Squaring the Boston Globe does not know the legal status of the Globe carriers who have served us. Our carrier left recently to return to his home in Latin America. Unlike the Boston Globe, Squaring the Boston Globe does not have the lavish resources to fly ourselves to Latin America for a single interview to determine if our Globe carrier was in this country legally or not.”
He continues to promote an end to illegal immigration including employee verification:
"The statement from Eric Fehrnstrom...
“Americans know that our immigration system is broken. Governor Romney has supported employer verification as an essential part of an improved immigration and border control system...”
"We all know that the American immigration system is broken and that is why situations such as this occur. Today’s employers are faced with an untenable position. While it is unlawful to hire an illegal alien, most employers are forced to act as document experts when a potential employee presents papers for work. However, if the documents presented seem to be real, the employer cannot question those documents or they could face employment discrimination charges. (Source: Immigration and Nationality Code sections 274A, 274B).
"This kind of absurdity in the immigration laws is why Governor Romney has consistently supported an employer verification system that allows employers to check a government database to confirm the legal status of a potential worker. Most recently in an interview with the Arizona Capital Times, the Governor said: “But at the same time, the only really effective deterrent against illegal immigration will be an employment verification system, with a tamper-proof card that can be verified by employers before they hire people.” "
Company promises to only use legal immigrants and retains job, but then is caught still using two illegal immigrants and is fired:
“Ricardo Saenz, owner of the company that employed illegal immigrants, worked on Romney's lawn recently...
“Later, the campaign issued a statement saying Romney had just learned -- apparently from Globe reporters -- of the company's continued practice of employing illegal immigrants, and immediately fired it.
“ "After this same issue arose last year, I gave the company a second chance with very specific conditions," Romney said in the statement. "They were instructed to make sure people working for the company were of legal status. We personally met with the company in order to inform them about the importance of this matter. The owner of the company guaranteed us, in very certain terms, that the company would be in total compliance with the law going forward.
“ "The company's failure to comply with the law is disappointing and inexcusable, and I believe it is important I take this action," Romney said.”
Even the Globe begrudgingly agreed giving the second chance demonstrated meaningful compassion at great political risk:
“MAYBE MITT ROMNEY really does have a heart.
“How else to explain his decision to give a second chance to the landscaping company that got him in political trouble a year ago [in 2006] for dispatching illegal immigrants to tend his property? It's... so opposite the image of the cold, PowerPoint-loving CEO who would be president.
“Romney discards political positions, allies, and judicial appointees the moment they turn into liabilities. But he gave his landscaping company, Community Lawn Service With a Heart, another shot, to his political disadvantage...
“Saenz won't get a third chance; this time, Romney fired him.
“It adds up to a curious development for a candidate whose website tackles the subject of illegal immigration with this no-nonsense pledge: "We must secure the border, implement an enforceable employer verification system, punish sanctuary cities, and reject amnesty if we are to restore American's faith in the rule of law." ”
"Another aspect of American sovereignty is the security of our borders. The current system is a virtual concrete wall against those who have skill and education, but it's a wide-open walk across the border for those that have neither. McCain-Kennedy isn't the answer. As governor, I took a very different approach. I authorized our state police to enforce federal immigration laws."
"People should have no advantage by having come here illegally. I am going to tell them to go home, but they start by beginning the process of applying for citizenship. But I do not believe -- or applying for permanent residency. They're not going to be barred from doing that, but they do not get any advantage by having come here illegally. That's the key part of what I objected to in McCain-Kennedy.
"McCain-Kennedy, what it did is said that people who are here illegally get a special pathway. They're not like all the other immigrants in the world that want to come to this great country; they get a special pathway. That's what's wrong about it. If you're here illegally, you should not have a special pathway to become a permanent resident.
Z-Visas and Amnesty - 2007 (0:48)
Start Enforcing Laws, No Permanent Z-Visas (0:28)
"My view, you have to secure the border, number one, have an employment verification system, number two, and number three, say to those that are there illegally, get in line with everybody else; you're not going to have a special doorway, any particular advantage, by having come here illegally, to become a permanent resident. And my fear is that McCain-Kennedy would do to immigration what McCain-Feingold has done to campaign finance and money in politics, and that's bad. (Applause.)"
"I strongly oppose today's bill going through the Senate. It is the wrong approach. Any legislation that allows illegal immigrants to stay in the country indefinitely, as the new 'Z-Visa' does, is a form of amnesty. That is unfair to the millions of people who have applied to legally immigrate to the U.S.
"Today's Senate agreement falls short of the actions needed to both solve our country's illegal immigration problem and also strengthen our legal immigration system. Border security and a reliable employment verification system must be our first priority."
2008 Presidential Candidate & U.S. Representative:
“For the same reason that I launched this campaign, I must now end it.
While several of the candidates appear to be committed to our cause,
there are others whose records as public servants are abysmal on this issue.
They have been on the other side of the battle for years in encouraging and even inviting in a way illegal immigrants into
the country. I fear that remaining in this race, one I know I cannot win, could contribute to the nomination of one of those candidates.
We have done too much, we have come too far, the stakes are way too high for me to allow that to happen.”
(3 1/2 minutes into statement)
“Once I determined that it was best for the cause that I step down, the question became 'should I endorse another candidate?'
“I made the decision to do so. There is a candidate that meets several criteria that are critical from my point of view.”
“First, he will secure our borders.
Second, he will prosecute employers who create the magnet that draws so many millions of illegal aliens into the country.
Third, he'll require those who are presently here illegally to return home.
“He also has by the way a solid record that matches his rhetoric.
He is also I think committed to the idea that sanctuary cities should be stopped, should be penalized, and dealt with accordingly.
And finally, and very importantly, he can go the distance.
“I am also gratified to know that on the defining geo-political issue of the 21st century, which is the war with Islamic fundamentalism,
we do find common ground. This morning I met with Governor Mitt Romney. Although we are not in agreement on all issues,
I am convinced that he is committed to the principles I have outlined.
“And so today, I am doing two things that I believe are in the best interest of this cause.
And that cause is of course a secure America.
I am withdrawing from the race and I am endorsing Governor Mitt Romney for President of the United States.
Throughout the campaign I have learned a great deal about the candidates.
I have certainly been impressed with Governor Romney's ability to solve very complex problems
and I believe he is a man of personal integrity and great character.
I think he would bring honor to the Oval Office.
So I am happy to do this thing in two parts today.” (4:15 minutes into statement)
In answer to a reporter's question, Tancredo says of Romney:
“He is the best hope for our cause.” (10 minutes into statement)
In answer to another reporter's question:
“What's the record? What have these people done? When they had the chance, what did they do? And at least in
Governor Romney, to his credit, when he was governor of a state
he actually did something that I don't consider to be politically correct in the state of Massachusetts.
And that is to stop driver's licenses for illegal aliens or to oppose giving in-state tuition to illegal aliens.
I cannot find a motive other than the fact that he believed in it.
What good would it have done him in that area?” (12 1/2 minutes into statement, answering another reporter's question)
Rep. Rohrabacher: "Mitt Romney is the best candidate."
Lars Larson: "Well, absolutely,... I'm already sold on him, but tell me why him..."
Rep. Rohrabacher: "Well, first of all, the most important issue to me, no matter what we do on all the other issues, ... unless we get control of the massive flow of illegals into our country, all those other things are going to be meaningless...
Mitt Romney is someone who has taken I would say some very tough stands, and I think he is very acceptable... Mitt is really going out of his way to try to reach out to us, and I think that he will be a good president... I would suggest that Romney's character as well as his experience would lead him to be a better chief executive. And that's what we need as we try to ensure that our economy is competitive, and etcetera."
(This link has a list of audio clips. Select 2008, January, then click on the Jan 22 Rohrabacher clip.)
Congressman Rohrabacher, who represents southern California's 46th district, is known for being "committed to securing our borders and a staunch opponent of amnesty for illegal immigrants", as noted in his BIOGRAPHY webpage on his website:
Congressman Bilbray said, "Our country faces unprecedented challenges and we need a leader with proven executive leadership. That leader is Mitt Romney. He can strengthen our economy because he has worked firsthand in the economy. He will work to strengthen our immigration laws without allowing amnesty to 12-20 million illegal immigrants. I am proud to support Governor Mitt Romney and his campaign to be our next President."
Congressman Bilbray is Chairman of the Immigration Reform Caucus and a San Diego native.
"The Mitt Romney campaign said the former Massachusetts governor has been endorsed by a heavyweight in moves to stop illegal immigration... The campaign said it was endorsed by Kris Kobach, who is head of the Kansas Republican Party and a professor at the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law.
"Kobach has led the fight on two of the most contentious immigration issues of the past year. His legal research was used by groups opposing efforts in some states to allow illegal immigrants to qualify for reduced in-state tuition at public universities in their home states. He also represented the city of Hazleton, Pa., in its attempts to sanction businesses that hired illegal immigrants or landlords who rented them housing."
Michelle Malkin- "Gov. Mitt Romney's new immigration enforcement adviser-one of the brightest minds and experienced architects of homeland security:
[Kris] Kobach said, “Of all the Republican presidential candidates, Governor Romney has outlined the clearest vision for how we are going to end illegal immigration in this country. More importantly, he has the record to back up his words. When he was Governor, he vetoed a bill that would have rewarded illegal aliens with in-state tuition rates, and he also increased cooperation between state and federal law enforcement. In one of our country’s most liberal states, he stood up for the enforcement of immigration laws. He will do the same as President.”
"Another stellar legal mind and counterterrorism expert who successfully prosecuted the 1993 WTC jihadists, Andrew McCarthy, signs on to the Romney campaign."
"Many Republicans, maybe even a few Democrats, believe there is a real [immigration] problem. One of them is Sheriff Joe Arpaio of Maricopa County, Arizona... When motorists are stopped in his jurisdiction, their immigration status is checked. They’re arrested if they’re here illegally. He’s also instituted a hot line for citizens to report employers suspected of hiring illegals.
"Sheriff Joe journeyed to Iowa last week to campaign for the person he’s supporting for president... Sheriff Joe Arpaio was there to back Mitt Romney. Romney’s a great guy, a great businessman, a great organizer, he told anyone who would listen, and will surround himself with good people who’ll get the job done."
Sheriff Arpaio is only one of over a dozen sheriffs who spoke out in favor of Mitt Romney for president. Why did so many sheriffs speak out on a presidential campaign this election? Their main reason was their concern about illegal immigration and crime and homeland security.