President Bush is pressing his plans to combat illegal immigration, but Congressman Steve King says those plans won’t work without a fence along the country’s southern border. The president was in Arizona yesterday and will be in Texas today, touting his plan to put more agents along the border while at the same time enacting a “guest worker” program that would let immigrants stay in the U.S. up to six years.
“Well, I’m glad and encouraged that the president is talking more and more about border enforcement,” King says. But King says that can’t be done without a fence.
King will push for “enforcement first” and he says Americans are skeptical of the plan to let workers stay here as “guests” for up to six years. “I will say that the only time that I can find in history when there has been any such thing as a temporary worker it was the Hebrews and Moses came along and said ‘Let my people go,'” King says.
King expects Congress to debate the idea of putting a fence along the U.S./Mexican border. King says he first raised the idea on August 22nd, and since then other members of Congress have drafted two separate bills to accomplish the same thing.
King says it’s also time to eliminate “birthright citizenship” because it’s another thing that’s acting like a magnet to bring illegals into the country. “I think the records of the hospitals along the border, especially in southern California, are full of the records of people who come into this country and a few minutes later or hours or days later have a baby,” King says. “That baby, then, is an automatic citizen by practice, not necessarily by constitution.”
King says the people who drafted the 14th amendment to the U.S. constitution never intended the babies born to those who are illegally inside the borders of the U.S. to automatically be granted U.S. citizenship. The 14th amendment was ratified in 1868 as a means of ensuring that all former slaves were granted automatic U.S. citizenship.