Ted Cruz: Real Immigration Reform Requires 'Securing the Borders'

Sunday, 27 Jan 2013 03:32 PM

By Todd Beamon and Kathleen Walter

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Texas Sen. Ted Cruz told Newsmax TV that any comprehensive immigration reform plan must “get serious about securing the borders.”

“Most Americans agree that, in the post 9/11 world, it doesn’t make any sense to not know who’s coming into this country,” Cruz said on Saturday in an exclusive interview at the National Review Summit in Washington.

Story continues below video.


House Speaker John Boehner said this week that a bipartisan group of lawmakers have been holding secret discussions on immigration reform.

“They basically have an agreement,” the Ohio Republican said.

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While Cruz told Newsmax that he needed to see specifics on the plan, he added: “We need to put serious efforts in place, including tripling the border control, including a strong e-verify plan to secure the border.”

More broadly, however, Cruz said: “We need to remain a nation that doesn’t just welcome but that celebrates legal immigrants, those who follow the rules, who come here legally and seek the American Dream. That’s been the great strength of our country for centuries.”

Immigration proposals that “speed up legal immigration to make lives easier for those who are coming here legally and to make the process simpler so you don’t have the incredible waiting period” are best, he said.

And such a program would best benefit the Republican Party, Cruz said.

“What is most critical in the Hispanic community is that we be the party of opportunity. Hispanics are a fundamentally conservative community. The values that resonate in our community: faith, family, patriotism. Hard work and individual responsibility — there is no ideal that is more important in the Hispanic community than the ideal of the American Dream.

“And Republicans need to get back to opportunity,” Cruz said. “The free-market system, what is incredible about it is it provides opportunity for anyone to come with nothing and achieve anything.”

Cruz mentioned his father, Rafael, who came to the United States from Cuba 55 years ago when he was 18 — “didn’t speak English, had $100 sewn into his underwear — and he washed dishes making 50 cents an hour to pay his way through the University of Texas, then started a small business.”

The nation now has. 23 million Hispanic small-business owners, Cruz said.

“If Republicans want to do better in the Hispanic community, and it’s critical that we do better in the Hispanic community, we have got to be the party that champions opportunity, champions policies that work and that help people climb the economic ladder.

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“The policies of the Obama administration — more and more government control of the economy, regulations, taxes — are harming the ability of those to climb the economy ladder,” Cruz said. “They’re hurting small businesses. They’re hurting opportunity. We’ve got to go and take that argument and win that argument.”

In his wide-ranging Newsmax interview, Cruz also said:
  • He will keep working to repeal Obamacare. “I intend to fight to expand health insurance coverage through free-market reforms — and empower patients that don’t empower Washington, but empower patients to make healthcare decisions in consultations with their doctors.”
  • California Democratic Sen. Diane Feinstein’s assault-weapons ban introduced this week will not pass the Senate. “The Second Amendment protects our individual rights to keep and bear arms.” Also, “what is particularly nonsensical is that gun control is one of the least-effective public policies if the objective is to stop crimes of violence.”
  • He does not support Texas seceding from the United States, despite petitions from many of his state’s residents. “I’m an American and I love this country. I’m not ready to give up on this country. Texans, every American, has a responsibility to fight for liberty, to fight for the Constitution — not to take our marbles and go home.”

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