RPT 2012 Immigration Platform: The Texas Solution
A Texas Solution for a Texas problem has been passed by the Republican Party of Texas Platform Committee and will be voted on the floor in front of the full committee later today. The current 2012 draft is the work of a week of meetings with the subcommittees and the full committee. For the first time in memory, a coalition was formed between members of groups such as the Minutemen and IRCOT (NOTE: see letter from IRCOT below) and those seeking a legal status. All sides agreed that a temporary worker program is the only workable solution. The plank was passed unanimous out of the subcommittee and was passed unanimously by the full committee.
However, the platform still needs to pass the full convention, and there is still a lot of opposition and misinformation out there. One opposition group is claiming that crucial points were cut out of the immigration plank on the platform. However, as several subcommittee members pointed out, many of the provisions that were removed from the immigration plank are included in other planks in the platform. For example:
Preserving American Freedom- Page #3
Driver Licenses - We propose that every Texas driver license shall indicate whether the driver is a U.S. citizen. No such license shall be issued to anyone not legally in the country.
Law Enforcement -
- We support limitation of criminal jurisdiction of federal law-enforcement agencies into state and local jurisdictions and encourage them to enforce the laws under federal jurisdiction.
- The states have the right to protect their citizens if the federal government fails to enforce their applicable laws.
Census - We oppose the Census Bureau’s obtaining data beyond the number of people residing in a dwelling, and we oppose statistical sampling adjustments. We support the actual counting of people and oppose any type of estimation or manipulation of Census data. Only U.S. citizens should be counted for the purpose of adjusting legislative districts.
Preserving American Freedom- Page #4
Real ID Act - As the Real ID Act effectively creates an unconstitutional and privacy-inhibiting national ID card, we hereby call for its immediate repeal.
Restoring Integrity to Our Elections – Page #5.
Voter Registration - We support restoring integrity to the voter registration rolls and reducing voter fraud. We support repeal of all Motor Voter laws; re-registering voters every four years; requiring photo ID of all registrants; proof of residency and citizenship, along with voter registration application; retention of the 30-day registration deadline; and requiring that a list of certified deaths be provided to the election administrator in order that the names of deceased voters be removed from the list of registered voters.
Voting Rights - We support equal suffrage for all U.S. Citizens of voting age who are not felons. We oppose any identification of citizens by race, origin, or creed and oppose use of any such identification for purposes of creating voting districts.
Fair Election Procedures - We support modifications and strengthening of election laws to ensure ballot integrity and fair elections. We strongly urge the Texas attorney general to litigate the previously passed voter ID legislation. We support increased scrutiny and security in balloting by mail; prohibition of internet voting and any electronic voting lacking a verifiable paper trail; prohibition of mobile voting; prosecution for election fraud with jail sentences; repeal of the unconstitutional “Help America Vote Act”; and assurance that each polling place has a distinctly marked and if possible separate location for Republican and Democratic primary voting.
Honoring the Symbols of Our American Heritage – Page #6.
American English - We support adoption of American English as the official language of Texas and of the United States.
Celebrating Traditional Marriage – Page #7.
Human Trafficking ― The Republican Party of Texas adamantly opposes any form of human trafficking.
Strengthening Families Protecting Life and Promoting Health – Page #10.
ASSISTING FAMILIES TO SELF SUFFICIENCY
Welfare Reform ― Welfare should offer a hand up to transition families and individuals through hard times and welfare reform should encourage partnerships with faith based institutions, community and business organizations to assist individuals in need. The current system encourages dependency on government and robs individuals and generations of healthy motivation and self-respect. It should be limited in scope. We encourage welfare reform in the following areas:
1. Denying benefits to individuals who cannot prove citizenship;
2. Welfare reforms should require recipients to work, learn, and train;
3. Reforms should require recipients to remain substance abuse free in exchange for temporary benefits not exceeding two years.
4. Recipients should be required to submit to random drug testing in order to receive benefits;
5. Welfare cards should be confined to food and vital essentials, not cigarettes, lottery purchases, or alcohol or drugs of any kind;
6. Prisoners should be removed from welfare rolls; and
7. A nominal co-pay should be required to encourage judicious utilization of health care services.
Educating Our Children – Page 11.
Bilingual Education – We encourage non-English speaking students to transition to English within three years.
College Tuition – We recommend three levels of college tuition: In-state requiring proof of Texas legal citizenship, out-of-state requiring proof of US citizenship, and nonresident legal alien. Non-US citizens should not be eligible for state or federal grants, or loans.
Educational Entitlement [page 12] – We encourage legislation that prohibits enrollment in free public schools of non-citizens unlawfully present in the United States.
Foreign Culture Charter Schools in Texas [page 13] – We oppose public funding of charter schools which receive money from foreign entities. We demand that these Charter Schools have accountability and transparency to local parents, taxpayers, the State of Texas, as do current public schools, including U.S. citizenship of principals.
Promoting Individual Freedom and Safety – Page 14.
State Militia – We support the establishment and maintenance of a volunteer Constitutional State Militia with assistance from County Sheriffs.
Electronic Privacy – We believe all law-abiding citizens should be free from government surveillance of their electronic communications except in cases directly involving national security, by court order. Except for non-citizens, we further oppose any national ID program, including the Real ID Act and the use of Radio Frequency Identification Chips (RFID) on humans.
Business and Economy - Page 19.
American Jobs – We support a favorable business climate of low taxes and deregulation to encourage capital investment, ensuring retention and creation of American jobs.
The 2012 language provides a solution that will show that Texas can lead the way on an issue that has divided the country for far too long. Not only that, we can cut the Democrats off at the pass and lead the nation.
The Texas Solution – Because of decades-long failure of the federal government to secure our borders and address the immigration issue, there are now upwards of 11 million undocumented individuals in the United States today, each of whom entered and remain here under different circumstances. Mass deportation of these individuals would neither be equitable nor practical; while blanket amnesty, as occurred with the Simpson-Mazzoli Act of 1986, would only encourage future violations of the law. We seek common ground to develop and advance a conservative, market- and law-based approach to our nation’s immigration issues by following these principles:
- Secure Our Borders – The U.S. Border must be secured immediately! We demand the application of effective, practical and reasonable measures to secure our borders and to bring safety and security for all Americans along the border and throughout the nation.
- Modernize the United States Social Security Card – We support the improvement of our 1936 Social Security card to use contemporary anti-counterfeit technology. The social security card will not be considered a National ID card for U.S. citizens.
- Birthright Citizenship – We call on the Legislative, Executive, and Judicial branches of the United States to clarify Section 1 of the 14th amendment to limit citizenship by birth to those born to a citizen of the United States with no exceptions.
- Create an Effective and Efficient Temporary Worker Program – A national Temporary Worker Program should be implemented to bring skilled and unskilled workers into the United States for temporary periods of time when no U.S. workers are currently available. The program should also require:
- Self-funding through participation fees and fines;
- Applicants must pass a full criminal background check;
- Applicants with prior immigration violations would only qualify for the program if they paid the appropriate fines;
- Applicants and/or Employers must prove that they can afford and/or secure private health insurance;
- Applicants must waive any and all rights to apply for financial assistance from any public entitlement programs;
- Applicant must show a proficiency in the English language and complete an American civic class;
- Temporary Workers would only be able to work for employers that deduct and match payroll taxes;
- All participants would be issued an individual Temporary-Worker Biometric Identification Card that tracks all address changes and both civil and criminal court appearances as a defendant.