Mitt Romney’s extreme immigration positions were on full display at Tuesday’s debate. From doubling down on his opposition to the bipartisan DREAM Act, to reiterating his support for the inhumane policy of “self-deportation,” Romney showed once again why he is the most extreme presidential nominee on immigration in modern history.
At the debate, Romney justified his support for “self-deportation” by claiming that it “let[s] people make their own choice.” But as the New York Times noted, Romney’s approach to immigration is “mass expulsion: a fantasy of ridding the country of 11 million unauthorized immigrants by making their lives unbearable.” And he’s not backing down from these extreme policies—after all, Romney’s immigration adviser, Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, advocates a “true nationwide policy of self-deportation.”
Romney once again called undocumented immigrants “illegals,” proving just how little he understands and respects the Latino community. Romney has praised Arizona’s controversial S.B. 1070—which requires police to check people’s immigration status if officers believe there is “reasonable suspicion” someone could be an undocumented immigrant—as a “model” for the country. As President Obama pointed out, Kobach, Romney’s immigration adviser, is the author of Arizona’s immigration law. And Russell Pearce, who helped Kobach write the anti-immigration law, said Romney’s policy is “identical to mine… Attrition by enforcement.” President Obama opposes S.B. 1070 and believes that “no American should ever live under a cloud of suspicion just because of what they look like.”
The DREAM Act
Romney stood by his opposition to the DREAM Act, which would allow young undocumented immigrants—many of whom were brought to America as children through no fault of their own—a chance earn a path to U.S. citizenship by pursuing a higher education or serving in the military. Romney has even gone so far as to dismiss the DREAM Act as “favoritism” and a “handout”—a slap in the face to talented and hardworking young immigrants who are caught in legal limbo and want nothing more than to contribute to the country they call home. The Romney campaign also said it would end the Obama Administration’s deferred action policy, which lifts the shadow of deportation from responsible young immigrants by giving them a chance to continue their education or apply for work authorization.
Click here to get the facts on how the two candidates compare on immigration.
A version of this post was published on the Truth Team blog.