Monday, October 10, 2011
Rick Perry on Immigration
Illegal immigration and border security are two issues the governor has been criticized on the most harshly. Most of the country had never heard of Rick Perry before he ran for president, nor did they know anything about his record. Naturally, they would look to the media to tell them. Since, from the start, the media has not been fond of Gov. Perry, they used this given opportunity to come down hard on him and sink his poll numbers. They continue to lift up the candidates they like best, which will mean real trouble if people vote for them simply based on that. That's another post, though.
When you look at Rick Perry's immigration stance on the surface, it does look weak. He offered in-state tuition to children of illegals, and he does not support a border fence. That is what the media will tell you. They want you to believe every word they say. When you really look deeper into his true record, though, you see that there are things the media is not telling you.
When people say that the governor is opposed to a border fence, it sounds like he is for open borders. Simply not supporting a border fence is not a border security position. Being opposed to a border fence means that, since he is the only candidate with experience in dealing with the border firsthand, he believes a fence is not the only solution. We need boots on the ground, something the federal government has repeatedly denied to give him more of. What he really said was that a continual fence along the entire border was not the solution; he did not say he supports taking the current fence down. Also, if you have ever been to the border, you would know that building a 1,200 mile fence along the entire thing would be horribly expensive, along with being bad for the environment, public and private. He does support fences in strategically placed areas. While you're thinking about weak stances on border security, why aren't the other candidates called weak on border security? They could be, with good reason: 1) None of them have actual experience on the border; they just read about it and take opinions from that (I'm not saying that is their fault, but they do not have that experience), and 2) Every one of them believes a fence is the solution; and people actually do jump over that fence. It could not possibly be the only solution.
People are overlooking the good things, which are clearly visible, that the governor has done on the border. He opposes amnesty for illegals. He signed a bill refusing them drivers' licenses. He does not offer them Social Security or Medicare benefits. That is only touching on what the governor has done on the border.
NumbersUSA gives every candidate a grade on issues they find important. They have given the governor a D- on illegal immigration, the same grade given to Mitt Romney. Michele Bachmann received a B-, the highest grade of the whole field. This proves that their grades are not credible. In fact, they state on their website, "These are not Report Cards on past actions, which matter but not as much as what these politicians now say in the news media or on official websites. These grades and ratings are about what a Hopeful says a President should do about immigration. We look at contradictions and changes in stances. We generally give the most weight to the most recent statements and actions." Based on that, they are not giving credible information. Gov. Perry has never changed his stance on immigration. Have any of the other candidates? We do not know. The only person whose position on immigration and border security matters, at least to the media, is Gov. Perry. The rest of the candidates have coincidentally taken the same stanceo. None of them "can" be attacked for it that way. When the only candidate with real border experience has a different opinion than the people who have never governed that region, it ought to make people take a second look.