Tags: GOP2016 | Immigration | Newsmax Now | Mark Everson | amnesty | immigration | Iowa

Mark Everson: Amnesty Better Than Europe's Immigration 'Chaos'

By    |   Thursday, 30 Apr 2015 03:46 PM

A Reagan-era official who oversaw major immigration reform in the 1980s is making the issue a plank of his long-shot bid for the presidency, and he tells Newsmax TV that amnesty for people who entered the United States illegally should be part of the program.

"I do suggest that if you haven't committed crimes, if you've been productive, paying your taxes, yes, I would provide an amnesty and a path to citizenship," Mark Everson, a former deputy commissioner of the old Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) under President Ronald Reagan, told "Newsmax Now" co-host John Bachman on Thursday.

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Everson, who was the first 2016 Republican hopeful to open a campaign office in Iowa, said the alternative to amnesty for the estimated 11 million people already here is a crisis of national identity like those afflicting countries in Europe.

"I've lived in France, which has an incoherence — they don't have the tradition of assimilation," said Everson. "I want to bring back the tradition of assimilation. Yes, have people learn English, and we need to be all pulling in the same direction, lest we follow Europe and France into incoherence, chaos and grave divisions over how to deal with radical Islam."

Everson said other needed elements of reform are improved border control — "and that is not just a fence," he said — as well as tighter monitoring of visa expirations and a reliable system of employer verification for lawful immigrants.

"We need to make some decisions," he said. "We can't just kick this can down the road. We need to change the legal system so that we are bringing people into the country … that can benefit the country economically."

Everson is also a former commissioner of the IRS under President George W. Bush. He is currently vice chairman of the tax policy consulting firm, Alliant Group, and was a CEO of the Red Cross before a scandal arising from an extramarital affair with a subordinate forced his exit.

Everson addresses that mark on his record, and some other difficult personal history, in a lengthy "Letter to America" that accompanied his campaign launch, and in the "Additional Issues" section of his campaign website, under "Social Issues."

He says he opposes abortion except to save the life of the mother or the fetus, opposes the death penalty, and wants same-sex marriage policy left to the individual states.

He also wants to bring back a national military draft.

"It's a big question but we've lost our sense of shared sacrifice," Everson told Bachman.

"Some communities are bearing the burden disproportionately. It will all cause us to have a very important conversation not about what it means to be a Republican or Democrat, but what it means to be an American.

"We need to all have skin in the game, even the rich and powerful, and that'll be a good thing for the conversations we have about America going down the road," he said.

A largely self-funded candidate with few donors thus far, Everson said he is using old-fashioned retail politicking to get his name into the national presidential conversation alongside more well-known and better-funded contenders.

"I've got an office out in Iowa," he said. "I'll be out there tomorrow at the Linn County Lincoln Dinner. I'll be in Cerro Gordo near Mason City on Monday night doing another event."

"Listen, Wall Street can't buy this election," said Everson. "That's what I think."

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A Reagan-era official who oversaw major immigration reform in the 1980s is making the issue a plank of his long-shot bid for the presidency, and he tells Newsmax TV that amnesty for people who entered the United States illegally should be part of the program.
Mark Everson, amnesty, immigration, Iowa, Europe
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2015-46-30
Thursday, 30 Apr 2015 03:46 PM
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