Immigration and Presidential Politics - Great Topic for Tonight's Presidential Debate
As President Barack Obama and Govenor Mitt Romney prepare for Wednesday's debate on domestic policy, I certainly hope they have spent some time looking at immigration. President Obama's policies have been extremely hostile to Hispanics. His administration has deported more Hispanics than any in history. And, at the same time, he failed to deliver on any of his promises for much needed immigration reform, despite his promises to the Hispanic community that immigration reform would be a first-term priority.
And yet, a recent CNN/ORC poll showed that Obama had the support of 70% of Latino voters. This is up from 67% who voted for him in 2008. It will be interesting to see what impact Univision's taking the President to task on his failed promises will have on those voters now. Univision has hit Obama hard in the past two weeks for these failed promises and for the role the Obama Administration played in Operation Fast and Furious leading to the death of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry and hundreds of Mexican citizens (many of whom had family in the US) along our US/Mexico border.
President Obama being grilled by Univision's Jorge Ramos and Maria Elena Salinas over immigration policy.
Univision's Jorge Ramos hit Obama particularly hard on his un-kept promises to the Hispanic community stating, in Spanish, "I want you to acknowledge that you did not keep your promise." Obama replied, "I am happy to take responsibility for the fact that we didn't get it done." He then went on to a litany of excuses. Mr. Obama, not only did you not get it done, many would say you never even started.
American priorities on immigration reform are also changing according to the poll. 56% of registered voters say the main focus of US Policy on undocumented immigrants would be to develop a plan to allow them to become legal residents. This is up 1% from one year ago.
The Texas Solution adopted by the Republican Party of Texas this summer is a good blueprint for how this could be done without giving amnesty to the people who violated our laws in coming to the US. It provides for a system of biometric identification, strong background checks and a system of fines for violations dependent on circumstances. This is not amnesty. Think back to the last time you paid a traffic fine. Did you feel like you were given amnesty by the court? I certainly didn't and neither will these immigrants.
This should be a major topic in this debate. Obama has failed Americans by failing to create jobs and he has failed us for failing to address the important issue of illegal immigration. Univision let him have it for these failures. I hope Romney will as well.
First Presidential Debate
Wednesday, October 3, 2012
at 8:00pm Central time
Topic: Domestic Policy
Location: University of Denver, Denver, Colorado
Moderator: Jim Lehrer (Host of NewsHour on PBS)