Tom Tancredo on Immigration

Republican Representative (CO-6)


Viva Tancredo: support for legal immigration, in Spanish

Tom Tancredo has launched a campaign to appeal to Spanish-speaking voters in the state. Tancredo's website now features his Viva Tancredo campaign alongside scenic snowy mountains and the open landscape of the American West.

Tancredo, who is well-known for his support of English as the official language of the United States, ran unsuccessfully for president in 2008 and for Colorado governor on the Constitution Party ticket in 2010.

Tancredo's new Spanish-language advertising will emphasize support for legal immigration. The ads will note a broken immigration system that rewards undocumented immigrants instead of law-abiding migrants.

A website video below shows Tancredo telling Wolf Blitzer, "No, I would not advertise in Spanish," during a 2008 president cycle debate. The Viva Tancredo website features a Spanish-language news report on the candidate, in which he wears one of his wryly controversial baseball caps, this time flashing the logo of the U.S. Border Patrol.

Source: The Wire e-zine on 2014 Colorado gubernatorial race , Feb 18, 2014

Exits race with victory on forcing focus on immigration

For the past ten years I have dedicated my public life to the critical issue of illegal immigration. I believed then--as I do now--that massive uncontrolled illegal immigration threatens our survival as a nation. I could not stand by and let open border politicians and corporate lobbyists sell our country out to the highest bidder. Then earlier this year when I feared that the issue would not be championed by any of the top candidates I threw my hat in the ring. It was the only way I could be certain that the candidates would be forced to take a stand.

The presidential campaign has come down to less than a handful of viable candidates. Unfortunately several of them have abysmal records on immigration and can’t be trusted to do what is needed to preserve this country if they’re elected. My fear is that if I were to stay in this race my votes could be the factor in handing victory to a pro-amnesty politician. The stakes are too high to play that hand. And so I am ending my presidential campaign.

Source: 2008 House campaign website, www.teamtancredo.org , Dec 20, 2007

Boycotted Univision debate because broadcast was in Spanish

Rep. Tom Tancredo of Colorado, who has built his campaign on stopping illegal immigration, boycotted the Dec. 9 debate at the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla., because it was being broadcast in Spanish. The rest of the pack, whom Tancredo accused of “pandering” to Spanish-speaking voters, attended: Rudy Giuliani, Mike Huckabee, Duncan Hunter, John McCain, Ron Paul, Mitt Romney and Fred Thompson.
Source: FactCheck on 2007 Republican primary debate on Univision , Dec 9, 2007

I’m not going to aid any more immigration

Q: What will you do to help ensure guest workers continue to come here?

A: I’m not going to aid any more immigration into this country. I reject the idea, categorically, that there are jobs that, quote, “No American will take.” But am I going to feel sorry if a business has to increase its wages in order for somebody in this country to make a good living? No, I don’t feel sorry about that and I won’t apologize for it for a moment. And there are plenty of Americans who will do those jobs.

Source: 2007 GOP YouTube debate in St. Petersburg, Florida , Nov 28, 2007

FactCheck: no plan exists to pay Social Security to illegals

Tancredo dusted off an old piece of misinformation from the 2006 campaign trail when he said there “is a plan to give Social Security benefits to illegal aliens who have worked in this country. That is ridiculous.” What’s more ridiculous is that this outdated scare tactic is still being used. There is no such plan. Rather, current law says that a formerly illegal alien who eventually becomes a legal citizen can get credit for any payments he or she made into the Social Security system while illegal. A Republican amendment to end the practice was defeated as part of an immigration bill that the Senate passed in May 2006 (which subsequently stalled).
Source: FactCheck on 2007 GOP primary debate in Orlando , Oct 21, 2007

Amnesty is worst possible public policy you can ever have

Q: Will you oppose all plans for amnesty, path to citizenship, guest workers, and seasonal passes until the very high unemployment rate of our own minority youth has dropped to 5%?

COX: Can we oppose amnesty in any circumstance?

BROWNBACK: I agree on opposing amnesty. On the guest worker provision, I think there are places, and particularly in industries like agriculture, that we should use guest worker programs.

COX: I oppose amnesty because it doesn’t work. It’s not going to solve the problem. It’s only going to encourage more illegal behavior.

TANCREDO: Listen, amnesty is the worst possible public policy you can ever have. It rewards illegal behavior, it encourages more of it, and it’s a slap in the face of every single person who as done it the right way. We should never, ever have amnesty.

Source: 2007 GOP Values Voter Presidential Debate , Sep 17, 2007

No guest worker program; it creates second class citizens

Q: Will you oppose guest workers?

COX: I oppose a guest worker program. We don’t want to create a second class of citizens in this country. We want people who come to America to ultimately be Americans. At the same time, we ought to make sure that we send the people home who have cut in line, but we’ve got to make sure that we bring the people in who are waiting in line, and waiting for the bureaucracy 10 or 15 years to get to this country legally.

TANCREDO: I’ll tell you another thing about guest worker programs. Guest worker programs is an insult to every American: that they are only coming for jobs no American will take. Right? Well, really what they are saying is--they are coming for jobs that no American will take for the price I can get an illegal alien to perform the job for. That’s the real issue. So, no more guest worker. We don’t need it. We certainly don’t need amnesty.

Source: [Xref Cox] 2007 GOP Values Voter Presidential Debate , Sep 17, 2007

It’s not based on racism--it’s about the rule of law

Q: [to Huckabee]: You said legislation to crack down on illegal immigration was “inflammatory and race-baiting.” Why do you feel some anti-immigration advocates are racist?

HCKABEE: Well, first of all, because I’ve listened to some of them. And it’s not the concern that people are coming here for opportunities or even that they’re illegal.

Q: Are some of the people who oppose illegals are in fact mean-spirited and racist?

TANCREDO: For how many months did my colleagues up here stay silent or were on the other side of it? You wonder why people are cynical about politics and politicians. But when it sounds like the people are getting uptight about this and we can make hay out of it, we’re all going to be the strongest supporters of secure borders that you ever saw in your life. Well, I’d like to see more than rhetoric. It’s got nothing to do with disliking people who are coming into this country. It’s got everything to do with the rule of law.

Source: 2007 GOP debate at UNH, sponsored by Fox News , Sep 5, 2007

Illegal immigrants especially hurt African-American workers

Tancredo used his opening remarks to talk about his signature issue, illegal immigration, and how it was hurting American workers, and especially African-American workers. Tancredo said he gets “insulted” every time he hears that illegal immigrants are working jobs American citizens won’t take. “I’ve done those jobs, you’ve done those jobs, our kids have done those jobs,” he said.

Tancredo said proponents of immigration reform have “the audacity to call ‘amnesty’ the modern day civil rights movement. He earned big applause for saying “There is no comparison” between the two movements.

He then closed with an anecdote highlighting what he said whites and blacks have in common--a language. He recalled the story of a white woman looking for crew socks in a store and could not find anyone who spoke english. She finally found a black woman who helped her. The black woman said, “I always knew something was going to bring us together. Who would have thought it was going to be a language?”

Source: News feeds on the 2007 NAACP Presidential Primary Forum , Jul 12, 2007

Illegal immigrants especially hurt African-American workers

Tancredo used his opening remarks to talk about his signature issue, illegal immigration, and how it was hurting American workers, and especially African-American workers. Tancredo said he gets “insulted” every time he hears that illegal immigrants are working jobs American citizens won’t take. “I’ve done those jobs, you’ve done those jobs, our kids have done those jobs,” he said.

Tancredo said proponents of immigration reform have “the audacity to call ‘amnesty’ the modern day civil rights movement.

Source: , Jul 12, 2007

Consequences of immigration bill are survival of the nation

Q: You opposed the immigration reform compromise calling it “the worst piece of legislation to come down the pike in a long time.” What are the consequences for the country?

A: They are incredible and they are disastrous. I have consistently tried to impress upon the American public the seriousness of this issue. We’re not just talking about the number of jobs that we may be losing, or the number of kids that are in our schools and impacting our school system, or the number of people that are abusing our hospital system and taking advantage of the welfare system in this country--we’re not just talking about that. We’re talking about something that goes to the very heart of this nation-- whether or not we will actually survive as a nation. And here’s what I mean by that. What we’re doing here in this immigration battle is testing our willingness to actually hold together as a nation or split apart into a lot of Balkanized pieces.

Source: 2007 GOP debate at Saint Anselm College , Jun 3, 2007

FactCheck: McCain’s bill does not codify federal non-English

Tom Tancredo claimed John McCain wasn’t being straightforward regarding his support for making English the official language. Tancredo said McCain’s bill would “codify President Clinton’s original executive order that said all papers produced by the government have to be in various languages.” Tancredo isn’t telling the whole story. It is true that in 2000, Pres. Clinton issued Executive Order 13166, which required that government agencies issue certain documents in multiple languages. But that order didn’t require “all papers” produced by the government to be in languages other than English, as Tancredo says; it only applied to documents that outline federal assistance services for US citizens without English proficiency. The McCain-Kennedy Immigration bill (S. 1033) would not have rescinded Clinton’s order, and it would have require some other documents to be issued in different languages for labor contracts.
Source: FactCheck on 2007 GOP debate at Saint Anselm College , Jun 3, 2007

Enough is enough: timeout on LEGAL immigration

Q: With regards to illegal and legal immigration, what does it mean to be an American?

TANCREDO: It means, number one, cut from the past. If you come here as an immigrant, great. If you come here legally, welcome. It means you cut your ties with the past, familial, & especially political ties with the country from which you came. But let’s be serious about this, you guys. We talk about all the immigration reform we want, and what it’s got to get down to is this: Are we ready for a timeout? Are we actually ready to say, “Enough is enough”? We have to stop all legal immigration except for people coming into this country as family members, immediate family members, and/or refugees. We have got to actually begin the process of assimilating people who have come in this great wave of immigration. The process of assimilation is not going on. How long will it take us to catch up? I’ll tell you this. It’ll take this long: until we no longer have to press 1 for English and 2 for any other language.

Source: 2007 GOP debate at Saint Anselm College , Jun 3, 2007

Keep law that bars immigrants from running for president

Q: Should we change our Constitution to allow men like Mel Martinez, born in Cuba, and Arnold Schwarzenegger, born in Austria, to stand here some night as candidates for president?

PAUL: I’m a no, because I am a strong supporter of the original intent

GIULIANI: When he called me up to endorse him, he got me on the phone, he said, “Will you endorse me?”, and I was too afraid to say no. I would say yes.

TANCREDO: Intimidating as he might be, I’m saying no.

Source: 2007 GOP primary debate, at Reagan library, hosted by MSNBC , May 3, 2007

We already have scores of programs for legal immigration

Q: Bush said, “We cannot fully secure the border unless we take pressure off the border, and that requires a temporary worker program. We should establish a legal and orderly path for foreign workers to enter our country to work on a temporary basis.” Comments?

A: There are literally scores of programs that we now operate to let people come into this country legally. The immigration program alone lets about 1.25 million people into this country every year, more than any other country, we take in legally through the immigration process. That’s just immigration. That’s not visas. H-2A visas, for agricultural work--there are no limits on those visas. You can have as many as you want. Bush is presenting it as if we do not have a guest worker program today, and we do. Bush is also suggesting--which I think borders on disingenuous--that the only way we can secure the border is to have a guest worker program. Baloney. We can secure our borders. We choose not to secure the border. We can do so, though.

Source: CNN Late Edition: 2007 presidential series with Wolf Blitzer , Mar 4, 2007

We CAN deal with 20M immigrants by enforcing on employers

Q: Bush supports a pathway towards citizenship for some of the millions of illegal immigrants in the country right now. You don’t. Why?

A: I do not, and when he starts out saying, “you can’t deport 11 million to 20 million people.” The reality is you could. So people should not be allowed to just state that as an absolute fact. The reality, however, is you don’t have to. All you have you have to do is begin enforcing the law, especially against people who are hiring people who are here illegally, and you will see an attrition process that will reduce the number of illegal aliens in this country quite dramatically. And then the people will not go home voluntary, you do deport, because that’s the law, and yes, you can do it.

Source: CNN Late Edition: 2007 presidential series with Wolf Blitzer , Mar 4, 2007

Parts of Miami are like a Third World country

Tancredo got himself into controversy by comparing parts of Miami to a Third World country. Following numerous death threats & an anti-free speech revolt by the primarily Hispanic staff at the venue where a meeting on the topic was to occur, Tancredo canceled the event. Some characteristics of Third World Countries are a lack of respect for free speech, & honest men living in fear for their safety. This shameful event simply proves Rep. Tancredo’s point, more vividly than any speech could have.
Source: PAC website, www.TeamAmericaPac.org , Dec 18, 2006

Opposes chain migration from anchor babies citizenship

Under current interpretation of the 14th Amendment, the children of non-citizens-even tourists and illegal aliens-born in the United States automatically become US Citizens. These “anchor babies” will encourage chain migration, make it virtually impossible to deport their parents, and makes any temporary worker program permanent.
Source: PAC website, www.TeamAmericaPac.org , Dec 18, 2006

Minuteman Project fills Border Patrol's inadequate resources

The planned Minuteman Project in Arizona first came to my attention in Dec. 2004, and like many Americans I had some doubts about it. What if some "crazies" infiltrated the group and shot some unarmed immigrant? I decided to keep an eye on the project and to ask lots of questions before endorsing it or participating.

The more I learned about their plans and preparation, the more impressed I was. What struck me was not only the ambition and vision of the two founders, but the immense outpouring of patriotism by 1,000 volunteers. The other astonishing thing was the reaction of officialdom to this emerging civilian defense force, which came into existence only because the government failed to do its job.

More astonishing still was the reaction of Pres. Bush, who called the Minutemen "vigilantes" in March 2006. The Minutemen patriots would not need to devote their time & energies to this task if the president gave the Border Patrol the resources and the mandate to actually accomplish its mission.

Source: Minutemen, by Jim Gilchrist & Jerome Corsi, p. xi-xii , Jul 25, 2006

Influential in founding The Minuteman Project

Jim Gilchrist knew the dangers of unchecked illegal immigration. What he didn't know, however, was what he could do to solve the problem. But an idea would soon come to Jim, an idea for which he credits 4 individuals--George Putnam, Chris Simcox, Rep. Tom Tancredo, and Barbara Coe--with giving him a crucial piece of the puzzle.

Radio talk show host George Putnam showed unusual passion toward the issue of illegal immigration. Putnam, now in his nineties, and like Gilchrist, a former Marine, served his country with distinction during World War II. His daily "Talk Back" program has been a stalwart fixture on Los Angeles' KRLA radio station for years. And while most politicians and pundits had ignored the influx of people sneaking across our nation's borders, Putnam boldly sounded the alarm. In fact, it was Putnam's on-air interviews with Chris Simcox and Congressman Tom Tancredo (R-CO) that first introduced Gilchrist to two men who would play a pivotal role in inspiring The Minuteman Project.

Source: Minutemen, by Jim Gilchrist & Jerome Corsi, p. 5 , Jul 25, 2006

US should not tip off Mexico about Minutemen activity

Tancredo responded to the US Customs and Border Protection Agency tipping off the Mexican military about the location of Minuteman volunteers on the border: "The Border Patrol has documented more than 200 incursions into the US by the Mexican military, and even apprehended Mexican government vehicles that were used to ferry drug runners across the border. By tipping off Mexico's military to the Minutemen's location, the US government is asking for trouble."

Tancredo noted, "The Minutemen haven't been accused of breaking the law. Quite the contrary--they have gone out of their way to aid law enforcement. The US government has no grounds upon which to stifle the Minutemen's constitutional right to organize." Tancredo demanded to know "the legal basis for CBP informing a foreign government of the activities of private citizens who are obeying the law."

Source: Minutemen, by Jim Gilchrist & Jerome Corsi, p.242 , Jul 25, 2006

No net benefit from immigration; annual $70B loss

Contrary to the protestations of the open-borders crowd, illegal immigration does not result in a net economic benefit to the US. In fact, illegal immigration, and, for that matter, legal mass migration cost America taxpayers far more than it generates annually. Immigration costs US taxpayers in excess of $70 billion annually. Most of these costs are borne by state & local governments, while the majority of tax receipts go to the federal government:
Source: In Mortal Danger, by Tom Tancredo, p.155-161 , Jun 6, 2006

Eliminate “chain migration” where illegals bring in families

Fixing Our Broken Borders
Source: In Mortal Danger, by Tom Tancredo, p.188-189 , Jun 6, 2006

It’s a myth that illegal immigrants benefit our economy

For those willing to listen to reason, it’s time to set the record straight. Illegal immigration does very little to benefit our country. For those of you who desire to join me in the fight to secure our borders & our future, remember the following myths
  1. Myth: There is nothing the US can do to stop illegal immigration
  2. Myth: Illegal immigrants take jobs Americans don’t want
  3. Myth: Illegal aliens are an economic plus for America
  4. Myth: Only bigots object and oppose illegal immigration.
Source: In Mortal Danger, by Tom Tancredo, p.114 , Jun 6, 2006

Our society is intoxicated with multiculturalism

My grandparents, like most of their peers, wanted to cut the ties that bound them to the old country and to connect with their new land. At that time, this desire and the economic forces at play combined to encourage the assimilation of immigrants.

In today’s America, immigrants are welcomed by a society intoxicated with the idea of multiculturalism. Today’s immigrants quickly become aware that there is no need to leave their old language or attachments behind because the only cause they will be required to espouse is allegiance to the ideology of radical multiculturalism.

I don’t know if we have become a nation of the same kind of self-indulgent hedonists that characterized the societies of past civilizations, but I do know that there is much here worth saving. To do that we must not only look at what it means to be American, but we must also notice how becoming an American has changed.

Source: In Mortal Danger, by Tom Tancredo, p. 22-23 , Jun 6, 2006

Immigration agency acts as greeters; should act as enforcers

Perhaps the most telling thing about the immigration agency, in spite of 9/11, is that many view their primary task as customer service. They don’t see themselves as enforcers of the law or as protectors of national security.

There is a small contingent, however, that does perform a law-enforcement duty. The objective of this group (the “enforcers”) is the enhancement of national security. When the enforcers’ director resigned, they were isolated and they became whistle-blowers. I sent an invitation for the head of the whistle-blower group to testify before my Immigration Reform Caucus.

My friend contacted the House Judiciary Committee to set up a meeting for the whistle-blowers to appear before staffers. Those staffers went to the Whit House to discuss ways to keep the agents from revealing the depth of the corruption in the immigration agency. The administration made it clear it did not want the information to come out for fear it would undermine the immigration guest worker program.

Source: In Mortal Danger, by Tom Tancredo, p.118-119 , Jun 6, 2006

Left supports immigration for votes; right for cheap labor

For years I have been one of the few to voice my concern over the marriage of politics and the law. On the left side of the aisle, politicians continue to do nothing about immigration because they know their ambiguities turn into votes for them. The right does nothing to stop it because we believe it generates cheap labor. The sum of those two powerful interests has stopped us from doing anything significant about the immigration problem and border security.

Our borders are porous because we lack the political will to close them. The amazing thing is we have the technology and resources to secure our border tomorrow, but we lack the will to do it.

Is it right that our borders allow the influx of millions of people to take the jobs of Americans? To force people either to work for less money than they were working for just a few years ago. To be unemployed? All in order to achieve political goals.

Source: In Mortal Danger, by Tom Tancredo, p.127-128 , Jun 6, 2006

Tom Tancredo on Amnesty

McCain’s plan is soft on immigration & amnesty

Q [to Tancredo]: Do you think that Sen. McCain is soft on immigration?

TANCREDO: I do. He sponsored a bill that would have given amnesty to everybody who’s here illegally. It would have required us to actually consult with Mexico as to whether or not we would build the fence along our southern border. If we pursue this path toward amnesty, it’s a disaster for the country.

McCAIN: I have never supported amnesty and never would. But the American people expect us to sit down and work this issue out together. That’s what I’ve been doing for a couple of years now. We are very close to an agreement, led by our president and his Cabinet, that will first secure our borders. Then we would have a temporary worker program that could only be valid through a tamper-proof biometric document. And then we would address the issue of the 12 million people who are already here.

ROMNEY: The key part of what I objected to in McCain-Kennedy is that they should not get any advantage by having come here illegally.

Source: [X-ref McCain] 2007 Republican Debate in South Carolina , May 15, 2007

Letting immigrants stay is amnesty

TANCREDO: The issue of immigration reform and what’s going to happen to this country unless we deal with this forthrightly--no more platitudes, no more obfuscating with using words like, well, I am not for amnesty, but I am for letting them stay. That kind of stuff has got to be taken away from the political debate, as far as I’m concerned, so people can understand exactly who is where on this incredibly important issue.

McCAIN: We’ve been working very hard for a couple of months with Democrats and Republicans, led by the president and his Cabinet, to come up with a comprehensive solution and resolution of this terrible problem of illegal immigration. One thing we would all agree on, the status quo is not acceptable. We have to secure our borders. But we also need a temporary worker program, and we have to dispose of the issue of 12 million people who are in this country illegally. This issue needs to be addressed comprehensively.

Source: 2007 GOP primary debate, at Reagan library, hosted by MSNBC , May 3, 2007

Tried guest workers in 1986; led to more illegal immigration

Just the idea of some sort of guest worker program again that will solve all of our problems, we did it in 1986. Doesn’t anybody remember that? We tried exactly what these people are proposing. All it led to, of course, was what you would just expect it would lead to, far more illegal immigration. When you reward people for a certain kind of behavior, you’re going to get more of it. When you reward illegal immigration, you’ll get more people who are illegal coming into the country.
Source: CNN Late Edition: 2007 presidential series with Wolf Blitzer , Mar 4, 2007

Guest-worker program equals amnesty

Q: Why does Team America oppose a guest-worker program?

A: Because guest-worker equals amnesty! A guest-worker program, like the one proposed by the President and some members of Congress would give American jobs to illegal aliens. A person’s first act upon coming to our country should not be an illegal entry! Furthermore, we should not reward their illegal entry with the benefits many illegals now receive, including free education and medical care paid for by American citizens’ tax dollars!

Source: PAC website, www.TeamAmericaPac.org , Dec 18, 2006

Bush’s “guest worker” program IS amnesty

The president’s guest-worker program, which he says is not an amnesty but would nonetheless allow people to legally remain in the US for a period of time to work, is a reward for breaking into our country. And even if it is not full-blown amnesty, it is being looked upon as such by the lawbreakers themselves.

The president said he was going to create a program but did not want to call it amnesty because that has a bad connotation with the public. No matter how many ways he wants to phrase it, no matter how many times he says he is against amnesty, the truth is, his plan is an amnesty plan.

The plan clearly offers amnesty in two respects. First, it protects persons who have broken the law from the punishment prescribed by law (deportation) while offering them the privilege that few get (living and working in the US). Second, does anyone really believe that, at the end of six years, the immigrants will go home or that Congress will have the political will to make them do so?

Source: In Mortal Danger, by Tom Tancredo, p.129-130 , Jun 6, 2006

Tom Tancredo on Mexican Border

Rescind Bush’s order allowing Mexican trucks on US roads

Q: Allowing Mexican trucks into our country brings unsafe equipment driven by people unable to communicate in English, read highway signs, or even know our laws. This creates a serious safety concern and undermines American jobs. Bill Clinton successfully kept Mexican trucks off US highways. Will you rescind Pres. Bush’s order to allow Mexican onto US roads?
Source: 2007 GOP Values Voter Presidential Debate , Sep 17, 2007

No campaign ads in Spanish; preserve English

Q: Would you advertise for your campaign in Spanish? Specifically, I’m referring to the highly publicized comment you recently made that Miami was like a third world country.

TANCREDO: No, I would not advertise in Spanish. Believe me when I tell you this--the preservation of the English language is important for us for a lot of reasons. It is the glue that keeps a country together, any country. Bilingual countries don’t work, and we should not encourage it. McCain’s immigration bill codifies Pres. Clinton’s executive order that said all papers produced by the government have to be in various languages. No, it is absolutely wrong. English is the language of this country, and you know what, we should not be ashamed of that. It’s a good thing and it holds us all together regardless of where we come from regardless of our backgrounds, our histories, it doesn’t matter. We need that thing to hold us together.

McCAIN: Well, first of all, muchas gracias.

Source: 2007 GOP debate at Saint Anselm College , Jun 3, 2007

Anchor babies: pregnant Mexicans give birth to US citizens

By simply being born in the US, a child automatically becomes an American citizen eligible for a range of public-assistance benefits. Mexican mothers frequently come to the US just to give birth.

A little-discussed constitutional provision actually allows all of this to happen legally through what’s called birthright citizenship. Though the provision was not authored with the intent of granting automatic citizenship to children of persons in the country illegally, courts throughout the years have held that it does.

The 14th Amendment starts, “All persons born or naturalized in the US... are citizens of the US.” Written in the immediate aftermath of the Civil War, the law’s intent was to prevent states from denying citizenship to newly freed slaves.

The loophole has become well known. The children born to illegal aliens are called “anchor babies” because once they are born in the US, they serve as an anchor to keep themselves & their families firmly (and legally) in the country.

Source: In Mortal Danger, by Tom Tancredo, p.167 , Jun 6, 2006

End “catch & release” along Mexican border

Fixing Our Broken Borders
Source: In Mortal Danger, by Tom Tancredo, p.187-188 , Jun 6, 2006

Spend billions more to enforce border fully

Mass immigration is the sole reason the US population is nearing 300 million. It’s why the Census Bureau estimates that, at current rates, the population will surpass 420 million by 2050. These are astronomical numbers, but given our country’s poor record of border enforcement, they aren’t surprising.

My answer to the problem of border enforcement is simple: if we’re not devoting enough resources to it, then devote more resources to it. We should be spending billions more than we are. It is Congress’s duty to do whatever it takes to protect and defend our borders. If we can’t stem the flow of millions of illegal aliens, how can we possibly hope to stop terrorists from infiltrating the country?

Source: In Mortal Danger, by Tom Tancredo, p.101-102 , Jun 6, 2006

Erect fence along entire Mexican & Canadian borders

Our immigration policies are in need of reform. In terms of physical security, there is so much we can do. We have the resources to erect a fence along the entire border--not just along our frontier with Mexico, but with Canada as well. High-tech, two-layer fences have been set up at some portions of the border, and they have been effective. The plan is cost-effective: we can build a border-length fence for about $1.5 million per mile: $3 billion for a two-thousand plus mile fence along our southwestern border. Given what we would save in terms of providing so many benefits for illegals, I have no doubt we could recoup this investment in no time. That $3 billion figure is less that we’re spending per month in Iraq.

But I cannot pretend that a border-length fence will completely eliminate illegal immigration. Still, a fence will go a long way toward accomplishing that goal.

Source: In Mortal Danger, by Tom Tancredo, p.109-110 , Jun 6, 2006

Deploy military troops to support Border Patrol

To bolster the physical protection of our borders, the president should also deploy military troops, when feasible, to support the Border Patrol. To facilitate that, we should amend the criminal statute of posse comitatus, which some believe bars the use of military in a border-enforcement capacity. This works: in 2005, 444 soldiers in the Army’s 4th Squadron, 14th Calvary Regiment of the 172nd Stryker Brigade conducted desert-like training in conjunction with the border patrol in New Mexico. They were responsible for aiding federal agents in the apprehension of more than 2,500 illegal aliens and 6,900 pounds of marijuana.

We have the technology and resources to secure our borders tomorrow. It is a canard for politicians to say it’s impossible. What they are really saying is: I choose not to defend and secure our borders because there are political ramifications that I fear. It is those fears that put the life of every American in mortal danger.

Source: In Mortal Danger, by Tom Tancredo, p.110 , Jun 6, 2006

Disallow Mexican “matricula” cards as valid ID cards

A matricula consular card is a semiofficial ID issued by the Mexican government to its citizens living in the US. The FBI has determined it “is not a reliable form of identification.” Yet their use is widespread and the US government had done nothing to curtail it.

The only reason a Mexican citizen would need a matricula consular card from the Mexican Embassy is if they are in this country illegally. The cards are easy to fabricate. Authorities have arrested an Iranian national with a Mexican matricul consular card in his own name.

But the State Dept. views it more “diplomatically.” In 2005, a State Department official said that while State does not defend the use of the cards, it is concerned that limitations on the cards would provide retaliation from other countries.

Mexican consulates have issued 1.2 million cards & say cards are only issued to citizens who appear in person with acceptable ID. Sometimes applicants need only convince issuing officers that they are who they say they are.

Source: In Mortal Danger, by Tom Tancredo, p.124-125 , Jun 6, 2006

Tom Tancredo on Voting Record

Supports employer verification in 2005 reform bill

The measure adopted in the immigration reform legislation passed in December 2005 would, if adopted, severly curtail the numbers of people flowing uninhibited across our borders. Though the measures were still LESS than I wanted, the overall bill was the best start at real immigration reform is more than ten years. It called for the construction of nearly 700 miles of a two-tiered security fence, for employers to be required to verify that their workers are either US citizens or in the country legally, for cities to stop providing sanctuary for illegal aliens by prohibiting their police from inquiring about a suspect’s immigration status, and for changing illegal immigration from a civil penalty to a misdemeanor.

In debunking these sensible reform measures, the Wall Street Journal resorted to “the sky is falling” arguments: “Tancredo has done everyone a favor by stating plainly the immigration rejectionists’ endgame--turn the US into the world’s largest gated community.”

Source: In Mortal Danger, by Tom Tancredo, p.113 , Jun 6, 2006

Voted YES on building a fence along the Mexican border.

Within 18 months, achieves operational control over U.S. land and maritime borders, including:
  1. systematic border surveillance through more effective use of personnel and technology; and
  2. physical infrastructure enhancements to prevent unlawful border entry
Defines "operational control" as the prevention of all unlawful U.S. entries, including entries by terrorists, other unlawful aliens, narcotics, and other contraband.

Proponents support voting YES because:

It is obvious there is no more defining issue in our Nation today than stopping illegal immigration. The most basic obligation of any government is to secure the Nation's borders. One issue in which there appears to be a consensus between the Senate and the House is on the issue of building a secure fence. So rather than wait until comprehensive legislation is enacted, we should move forward on targeted legislation which is effective and meaningful. The legislation today provides over 700 miles of two-layered reinforced fencing, and for the rest of the border provides a virtual fence, via integrated surveillance technology.

Opponents support voting NO because:

Just to build the fence is going to cost us at least $7 billion. Where is the money coming from to pay for it? How much is it going to cost to maintain this 700-mile fence? Who is going to do it? This bill contains no funding.

This bill also ignores real enforcement measures, like hiring more Border Patrol personnel, and instead builds a Berlin Wall on our southern border. So long as employers need workers in this country, and while our immigration systems impede rather than facilitate timely access of willing workers to those opportunities, undocumented immigration will never be controlled.

Walls, barriers, and military patrols will only force those immigrants to utilize ever more dangerous routes and increase the number of people who die in search of an opportunity to feed and clothe their families.

Reference: Secure Fence Act; Bill H R 6061 ; vote number 2006-446 on Sep 14, 2006

Voted YES on preventing tipping off Mexicans about Minuteman Project.

Voting YES on this amendment supports the Minuteman Project, a group of volunteers who have taken on surveillance of the Mexican border for illegal immigrants. The amendment states that US funds will not be used to tell the Mexican government about the whereabouts of the Minuteman Project volunteers. Proponents of the Minuteman Project say that they are volunteer citizens doing what the federal government SHOULD be doing, but has failed to do. Opponents of the Minuteman Project say that they are vigilantes at best and anti-Mexican racists at worst. The amendment states:
None of the funds made available by this Act may be used to provide a foreign government information relating to the activities of an organized volunteer civilian action group, operating in the State of California, Texas, New Mexico, or Arizona, unless required by international treaty.
Reference: Department of Homeland Security appropriations; Bill HR 5441 Amendment 968 ; vote number 2006-224 on Jun 6, 2006

Voted YES on reporting illegal aliens who receive hospital treatment.

Vote to pass the bill that would require hospitals to gather and report information on possible illegal aliens before hospitals can be reimbursed for treating them. The bill would also make employers liable for the reimbursements if an undocumented employee seeks medical attention, unless the employer meets particular conditions for exemption. The bill would specify that hospitals aren't required to provide care to undocumented aliens if they can be transported to their home country without a significant chance of worsening their condition.
Reference: Undocumented Alien Emergency Medical Assistance Amendments; Bill HR 3722 ; vote number 2004-182 on May 20, 2004

Voted NO on extending Immigrant Residency rules.

Vote on motion to suspend the rules and pass the bill that would extend by four months a law allowing some immigrants to remain in the country while pursuing legal residency.
Reference: Motion sponsoerd by Gekas, R-PA; Bill HR1885 ; vote number 2001-127 on May 21, 2001

No student visas from countries that support terrorism.

Tancredo co-sponsored against student visas from countries that support terrorism

OFFICIAL CONGRESSIONAL SUMMARY: To limit the issuance of student and diversity immigrant visas to aliens who are nationals of Saudi Arabia, countries that support terrorism, or countries not cooperating fully with United States antiterrorism efforts.

SPONSOR'S INTRODUCTORY REMARKS: Rep. PAUL: The US remains vulnerable to terrorist attacks more than a year after the tragedy of 9/11. Our borders remain porous--a virtual revolving door and welcome mat for those who would seek to harm us. This was never more evident than when news broke some time ago that the INS had actually renewed the visas for several of the 9/11 hijackers after the attack had taken place. We cannot prevent terrorism if we cannot keep terrorists out of our country.

This bill will deny student and "diversity" visas to anyone coming from a country currently on the State Department's list of terrorism-sponsoring countries. It may seem shocking that citizens from these countries can even still receive these visas, but it is true. We must put a lock on this revolving door if we are going to protect Americans from the continuing threat of terrorism on our soil.

Further, it is time we face reality regarding Saudi Arabia. We must remember that most of the 9/11 hijackers were Saudi nationals. Also, when al-Qaeda supporters were rounded up from Afghanistan, reports showed that of the 158 prisoners, more than 100 were Saudi nationals. With such an evident level of involvement from Saudi nationals in these activities, it is quite obvious that the Saudi government is not doing all it can, or all it should, in resolving this urgent problem. Therefore, Saudi citizens will also be denied student and "diversity" visas to the United States under this bill.

LEGISLATIVE OUTCOME:Referred to House Subcommittee on Immigration & Border Security; never came to a vote.

Source: Terror Immigration Elimination Act (H.R.488) 03-HR0488 on Jan 29, 2003

Rated 100% by FAIR, indicating a voting record restricting immigration.

Tancredo scores 100% by FAIR on immigration issues

The Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) is a national, non-profit, public interest membership organization of concerned citizens united by their belief in the need for immigration reform. Founded in 1979, FAIR believes that the U.S. can and must have an immigration policy that is non-discriminatory and designed to serve the environmental, economic, and social needs of our country.

FAIR seeks to improve border security, to stop illegal immigration, and to promote immigration levels consistent with the national interest—more traditional rates of about 300,000 a year.

With more than 70,000 members nationwide, FAIR is a non-partisan group whose membership runs the gamut from liberal to conservative.

The ratings are based on the votes the organization considered most important; the numbers reflect the percentage of time the representative voted the organization's preferred position.

Source: FAIR website 03n-FAIR on Dec 31, 2003

Rated 100% by USBC, indicating a sealed-border stance.

Tancredo scores 100% by USBC on immigration issues

OnTheIssues.org interprets the 2005-2006 USBC scores as follows:

About USBC (from their website, www.usbc.org):

U.S. Border Control, founded in 1988, is a non-profit, tax-exempt, citizen's lobby. USBC is dedicated to ending illegal immigration by securing our nation's borders and reforming our immigration policies. USBC [works with] Congressmen to stop amnesty; seal our borders against terrorism and illegal immigration; and, preserve our nation's language, culture and American way of life for future generations.

Our organization accepts no financial support from any branch of government. All our support comes from concerned citizens who appreciate the work we are doing to seal our borders against drugs, disease, illegal migration and terrorism and wish to preserve our nation's language, culture and heritage for the next generations.

Source: USBC website 06n-USBC on Dec 31, 2006

Government services in English only.

Tancredo co-sponsored bill requiring government services in English only

A bill to provide that Executive Order 13166 shall have no force or effect, and to prohibit the use of funds for certain purposes.

Be it enacted that Executive Order 13166, 'Improving Access to Services for Persons with Limited English Proficiency' (August 16, 2000), is null and void and shall have no force or effect.

On August 11, 2000, the President signed Executive Order 13166. The Executive Order requires Federal agencies to examine the services they provide, identify any need for services to those with limited English proficiency (LEP), and develop and implement a system to provide those services so LEP persons can have meaningful access to them.

Source: S.2719/H.R.768 08-S2719 on Mar 5, 2008

Declare English as the official language of the US.

Tancredo co-sponsored declaring English as the official language of the US

This bill declares English as the official language of the United States, establishes a uniform English language rule for naturalization.

  1. The United States is comprised of individuals from diverse ethnic, cultural, and linguistic backgrounds, and continues to benefit from this rich diversity.
  2. Throughout the history of the United States, the common thread binding individuals of differing backgrounds has been the English language.
  3. Federal Representatives of shall have an obligation to enhance the role of English as the official language of the Federal Government.
  4. The official functions of the Government of the United States shall be conducted in English.
  5. All citizens should be able to read and understand generally the English language text of the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the laws of the US.
  6. All naturalization ceremonies shall be conducted in English.
Source: English Language Unity Act (H.R.997) 2007-HR997 on Feb 12, 2007

Declared English the official language of the US.

Tancredo co-sponsored declaring English the official language of the US



    The Congress finds and declares the following:
  1. The US is comprised of individuals and groups from diverse ethnic, cultural, and linguistic backgrounds.
  2. The US has benefited and continues to benefit from this rich diversity.
  3. The common thread binding individuals of differing backgrounds has been a common language.
  4. The Federal Government should maintain a language common to all people.
  5. English has historically been the common language and the language of opportunity in the US.
  6. The purpose of this title is to help immigrants better assimilate and take full advantage of opportunities in the US.
  7. By learning the English language, immigrants will be empowered with the language skills and literacy necessary to become responsible citizens and productive workers in the US.
  8. The use of a single common language in conducting official business of the Federal Government will promote efficiency and fairness.
  9. English should be recognized in law as the language of official business of the Federal Government.
  10. Any monetary savings derived from the enactment of this title should be used for the teaching of the English language to non-English-speaking immigrants.
Source: English Language Empowerment Act (H.R.123) 99-HR0123 on Jan 6, 1999

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