|It's Broken - How to fix it
Issue: Over 530,000 illegal aliens were apprehended in 2016 (according to current DHS data) - up almost 68,000 from 2015. In 2016, ICE removed over 2,000 alien gang members, including individuals who traffic drugs, weapons, sex slaves, and members of the violent MS-13 gang
Solution: We need to fully fund the construction of a border wall, increase the number of border patrol agents, increase aerial reconnaissance, and increase security technology
Issue: There is currently a crisis-level backlog of over 300,000 pending asylum cases as of January 21, 2018. Some of these individuals are being held by I.C.E. in an attempt to verify their claims. However, because the ‘credible fear’ standard is so vague, it is being exploited as a loophole to avoid prosecution for entering illegally
Solution: We need to tighten the ‘credible fear’ standard to root out frivolous claims, and increase the penalties for fraud
Issue: The previous administration significantly expanded the detention of families who had illegally crossed the border. However, the courts ruled that according to a settlement known as the Flores agreement, if families are detained longer than 20 days, the children must be separated
Solution: We must update current law and allow families to stay together while they are held, waiting for their case to be decided. We must also reduce the backlog of cases by increasing the number of immigration judges, to reduce the amount of time these families stay in detention facilities
Expired Visa Overstays
Issue: A large number of those illegally in our county were issued a temporary visa, but remained after their visa expired. We are not accurately tracking these individuals. In fact, four of the 9/11/2001 hijackers were in our country on expired visas
Solution: We should stop visa overstays by fully implementing biometric entry-exit screening, so we can appropriately track those in the U.S. on temporary visas
Issue: Every hour, the U.S. permanently resettles enough migrants, on the basis of family ties, to fill a small auditorium. There are no qualifications for this system, other than to have a relative already in the United States
Solution: Visas issued to new immigrants should not be blindly random or solely based on family relationship, but on several factors. We can end a portion of chain migration and reallocate 88,000 visas, set aside for siblings and adult children of legal immigrants, and combine them with the 55,000 visas issued under the Diversity Visa Lottery - into a new merit-based system for those who bring skills and labor needed to help grow the economy
Issue: There are currently about 1.8 million on, or eligible for, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program in the U.S. Those identified as DACA/DACA eligible were minors when they were brought to the U.S. by their parents. While some of the parents came across the border illegally, some of the parents came legally on visas, but remained after their visas expired. This is a unique problem that current law does not clearly address
Solution: We must change the law to clearly address the DACA situation, otherwise the courts will ultimately make the decision. We need to consider a system to allow the DACA individuals to apply for renewable contingent nonimmigrant legal (CNS) status, which would allow them to stay in the country, but would not automatically grant them U.S. citizenship.
Issue: Although DACA recipients are technically considered to be legally in the country – due to the vagueness of our laws, they should not be given blanket amnesty
Solution: Any program that addresses DACA must require all applicants to pay a fine/fee to apply. And, these fees should go to funding enhanced border security
Issue: Local governments that identify as “sanctuary cities” eagerly accept federal funding, but their statutes, policies and ordinances violate federal laws. In some cases, these cities and local officials harbor and protect criminal illegal immigrants. Statistics show, from 2000 through 2014, sanctuary cities in the U.S. have had much higher crime rates than non-sanctuary cities
Solution: One step is to allow victims of violent crimes committed by illegal aliens to sue the governments that provided these criminals safe haven. Second, we should cut federal funds for any government that openly violates Constitutional federal laws
Issue: Nearly all of the illegal opioids entering the U.S. are manufactured in China and brought across the border by Mexican cartels. Drugs are also brought into the country by gang members, including MS-13, when they illegally cross the border. Because of the many loopholes in our broken system, even drug smugglers and other violent criminals are able to get visas for family members to enter the U.S.
Solution: We must begin to close our broken immigration loopholes, in order to aid in the fight against illegal opioids and other illegal drugs freely streaming into our country.
Issue: Recently declassified reports reveal Al-Qaida and ISIS plan to use our porous southern border as a portal to move weapons (including WMDs) and terrorist operatives into the U.S. These organizations regularly use the Internet and social media as tools for recruitment and communication with operatives in the field
Solution: In addition to adequately securing our borders, we need to make it a standard for the Department of Homeland Security to do background checks and review the social media activities of all visa applicants
Issue: Our open borders are a national security crisis. Every minute drug runners, sex traffickers, criminal gangs, human traffickers, and gun runners are exploiting our borders for their criminal activities. Foreign terrorist organizations also exploit our borders as a way to bring terrorists into our country
Solution: Securing our borders is the single most important aspect of any fix to our broken immigration system. This must be first and foremost, and it must be fully funded now - not based on promises of funding in the future