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John Edwards on Immigration

Democratic Nominee for Vice President; NC Jr Senator


Roadmap to citizenship for undocumented immigrants

Q: Should it become easier for undocumented foreign workers in the US to gain legal immigration status?

A: We should reform the immigration system so there is a clear road map to legalization and citizenship for undocumented immigrants who work hard and follow the law. At the same time, we should work with our ally, Mexico, to better control the border and stop illegal trafficking.

Source: Associated Press policy Q&A, "Immigration" Jan 25, 2004

Differentiate terrorists from the immigrants

Q: How would you distinguish or differentiate terrorists from the immigrants and visitors?

A: The whole notion of earned citizenship is something that I strongly support. I would expand the number of legal immigrants that can get into the country, which helps relieve some of this pressure that we have right now. Our relationship with Mexico and Pres. Fox is in the worst shape that we can imagine. And the result of that is, we don't have the kind of security along our southern border that we need.

Source: Iowa Brown and Black Presidential Forum Jan 11, 2004

Welcome immigrants with earned legalization program

I support policies that welcome immigrants and protect our security, including an earned legalization program for those who work hard and play by the rules.
Source: Vote-Smart Presidential National Political Awareness Test Jan 8, 2004

Hard working immigrants earn right to citizenship

Q: There are communities in North Carolina that probably never imagined in 100 years that they'd have to hire an English-as-a-second-language teacher or have bilingual classes.

EDWARDS: Let me say a word about my personal experience with this issue. I grew up in a family where my father worked in a mill all of his life. And when I was young, we moved to a small town in rural North Carolina, which is where I grew up. That town is now half Hispanic.

My family moved to that town because my father, who has a high school education and is still living, believed that by working hard and doing the right thing that his kids would have the opportunity for a better life. These Hispanic families? They came to Robbins, North Carolina, for exactly the same reason. And those who came and live there, who work hard and are responsible, they have earned the right to be American citizens.

Source: Democratic Primary Debate, Albuquerque New Mexico Sep 4, 2003

  • Click here for definitions & background information on Immigration.
  • Click here for policy papers on Immigration.
  • Click here for SenateMatch answers by John Edwards.
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Other candidates on Immigration: John Edwards on other issues:
NC Gubernatorial:
Mike Easley
NC Senatorial:
Elizabeth Dole
Erskine Bowles
Jesse Helms
Lauch Faircloth
Richard Burr

Presidential:
George W. Bush
(Republican for President)
V.P.Dick Cheney
(Republican for V.P.)
Sen.John Kerry
(Democratic nominee for Pres.)
Sen.John Edwards
(Democratic nominee for V.P.)
Ralph Nader
(Reform nominee for Pres.)
Peter Camejo
(Reform nominee for V.P.)
David Cobb
(Green nominee for Pres.)
Michael Badnarik
(Libertarian nominee for Pres.)
Michael Peroutka
(Constitution nominee for Pres.)
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