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Republicans on Immigration Reform - NY Times Takes Notice - Condoleezza Rice Picks Up Immigration Theme
This summer, the Republican Party of Texas took a bold step forward on the issues of border security and immigration reform by adopting "The Texas Solution." The national Republican Party has now followed suit by adopting a guest worker program into its national platform. This has not gone un-noticed by the national media.
Most recently, the New York Times took note of this movement within the party and the adoption of this new platform plank. In an article titled, "A Republican Platform Line Friendly to Immigrants", writer Julia Preston gives credit to the Republican Party for moving forward on this issue.
Preston credits Republican immigration activist, Brad Bailey, with making this happen. Baily, who is a restaurant owner in the Houston area, was one of the architects of The Texas Solution and has since worked, along with others, tirelessly to get this plank added to the national platform.
Texas Republicans Malcolm Morris, Tom Mechler and Brad Bailey present the 2012 National Republican Party Platform containing the foreign guest-worker plank.
Bailey told the NY Times, "We are a border state and we have the same problem as Arizona, but we addressed it totally differently than Arizona." Indeed, Texas dodged a bullet by not following in the path of anti-immigrant legislation put forward by states like Arizona, Alabama and Georgia. All of these states have suffered economic loss because of their actions and many have taken steps to reverse course.
"Jan Brewer and Joe Arpaio are hijacking the issue and damaging the Republican brand, " Baily continued. "We need to stop the hatred language and fix this problem."
During the years I have been working on the problems of illegal immigration and border security, little has been done to actually move a solution forward. The result is a de facto amnesty that has left millions of non-identified illegal immigrants free to roam the country with no accountability. We need to establish a process of identifying all immigrants in our country. We need to know who is here and why and that is not being done.
Texas took the lead last year through a proposed resolution in the Texas Legislature. HCR 88 received broad based, bi-partisan support from legislators even though it never made it from the Calendars Committee to the floor for a House vote. This was followed by the RPT's adoption of The Texas Solution.
It is interesting that one of the main themes of this year's RNC Convention is the "We did built it" line referring to President Obama's slap in the face to small business owners across the county. Yet, when business owners make the claim that they cannot find a reliable source of manual labor, they are chastised by fellow Republicans for only wanting cheap labor. The business leaders I talk to are simply looking for labor, at any price. They cannot find it. When you have restaurants like the Chick-fil-A chain, now beloved by conservatives, who are paying over $10 per hour for labor and still have difficulty finding US citizens willing to apply for the jobs or do the work, it becomes very clear we do have a labor shortage issue. And this is also true in construction and other hospitality industries.
Last night, former Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice, picked up on the new theme of the RNC Platform stating that Republicans need to champion a "compassionate" immigration policy. "We must continue to welcome the world's most ambitious people to be a part of us. In that way we stay young and optimistic and determined. We need immigration laws that protect our borders; meet our economic needs, and yet show that we are a compassionate people." Her statement was received enthusiastically by the delegates of the convention.
Obama's record on immigration reform is just one of his many failures. But it was not a failure because he tried something that didn't work. For three years, he did nothing. During two of those years he could have done anything he wanted, but still did nothing. And now, as a last ditch pandering attempt, he has created an illegal DREAM Act, bypassing our legislative process altogether.
Republicans will continue to lead on this issue. With a new Republican president and Republican-controlled Congress, we will be able to take action to positively secure our border and create a new, positive immigration program that accomplishes the goals set forth by Secretary Rice above. It is only the Republican Party that can effectively create a realistic and workable solution we all can live with. Democrats have proven they cannot and will not.