Policy

Brief

11.3 million people live in the U.S. illegally. The vast majority are hard-working individuals who contribute to their local communities while taking jobs no one else wants usually for less-than-minimum wage. Outside of their immigration status, most are law-abiding, and many have children who are American citizens. Undocumented immigrants account for approximately $37 billion in output per year and pay nearly $12 billion in state and local taxes (property, income, and sales).

Deporting 11.3 million people would be impossible even if one wanted to. It would cost $120 billion, gut the economy and be largely ineffective anyway. It would also separate 4.1 million children from their parents, which is inhumane and unconscionable on multiple levels.

Having so many undocumented people in this country is far from ideal. But they are here now. We must integrate as many as possible into our society and economy. We should provide a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants that involves multiple stages and waiting periods, background checks, payment of back taxes or fines, along with education about America’s history and system of government. If you want to belong and contribute, we should make it possible for you to do so.

 

We are a nation of immigrants, and many of our most enterprising people came to this country in the last generation or two. However they got here, there are over 11 million undocumented immigrants now living in our country, many with children who are citizens. We should provide a pathway to citizenship for those who abide by our laws and want to contribute. It would be far better to bring people into the economy and our way of life than to allow them and their children to live and work in the periphery.
— Andrew

Problems to be Solved

  • Currently, over 11 million people live in this country illegally
  • The cost to deport these immigrants is prohibitive in multiple ways
  • Over 4 million Americans live with parents who are here illegally, and the stress this creates is socially devastating
Goals
  • Create a pathway to citizenship for any illegal immigrant in this country
Guiding Principles
  • Fairness
  • Economic growth
  • Family
  • Social cohesion

 

As President, I will…

  • Work with Congress to consider a path to citizenship for immigrants who are in this country illegally. Steps I would consider including in this pathway:
    • A multi-step waiting system, consisting of stages:
      • Work permit (5-8 years)
      • Permanent resident (5-8 years)
      • Full citizenship (after 10 – 15 years)
    • Full background check
    • Fines and payment of back taxes
    • Education requirements
  • Work with Congress to create safeguards in the system to guarantee that the system isn’t abused, including:
    • Increased border security
    • Increased fines for employers who hire illegal immigrants after this system is in place and allows those in the country to declare their status