In an interview on The Tennessee Star Report with Steve Gill and Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast Wednesday on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 am to 8:00 am – Steve Gill spoke to the Federation for American Immigration Reform‘s representative Dave Ray about the President Trumps new immigration reform plan.
Towards the end of the segment, the men discussed how people are gaming the system at the border and revealed the child smuggling that is occurring because immigrants are using them as a way to come into the country.
Gill: President Trump has rolled out his new immigration reform plan. And among those who are urging parts of it and questioning other parts of it are our friends at FAIRUS.org. FAIRUS.org. Dave Raz is their communications director. He’s on the line with us to talk a little immigration this morning. Dave good to have you with us!
Ray: Hey great to be with you, Steve. How are you doing this morning?
Gill: You aren’t wearing your own brick wall suit this morning are you?
Ray: Of course not.
Gill: It’s more the steel bollard look.
Ray: It’s not a brick wall. It’s metal slats.
Gill: You know the President has laid out this plan and of course as the Democrats always do they’ve declared it dead upon arrival. Are there pieces of what the President has proposed that do have a chance? Or is this just again going to be a battle fought at the ballot box next year?
Ray: Well you know the Presidents job is to lead the nation with big visions and big pictures. And that’s really what he did when he laid out his immigration plan. It touches upon legal and illegal immigration. We haven’t had any changes to the legal immigration system since 1965. So I think a lot of this is more the direction he would like to see the country move but in terms of when some of this stuff will get passed, it could be after the 2020 election. Democrats don’t even seem to want to admit that there’s a problem on the border despite the fact that we have levels of illegal immigration the nation hasn’t seen since two thousand six and it’s only getting worse.
Gill: We have about 100,000 illegals pouring across the border that they’re catching and then releasing.
Gill: Each month. And yet you have the Democrats for weeks fought the idea that there was a ‘crisis’ on the border. Now they’ve admitted there’s a crisis. There just not willing to do anything about it. When you look at this proposal by President Trump one of the things he has proposed is a merit-based legal immigration system. Right now I think it’s about seventeen percent of those that apply for immigration status are under the merit system. He wants to raise that number I think to about 57 percent. Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats are pitching a hissy fit over this claiming that there shouldn’t be any merit-based system it is just well, first of all, we have a merit-based system already it’s just 17 percent versus 57 percent. And second, she supported and voted for this exact plan just a few years ago.
Ray: Well you know the reality is that the immigration laws that were good for our nation in 1965 and if you think of what the economy looked like then there were many more low skilled jobs available. I mean the nation has changed dramatically since then. But the way we select immigrants hasn’t. So it’s an outdated, outmoded way of selecting immigrants. We choose most of our legal immigrants based on the fact that they have a family member here. And about 25 percent of them are arriving without so much as a high school diploma.
Now imagine arriving here in the United States without a high school diploma and without working English. You are almost setting somebody up for failure. And that is by and large what many immigrants are doing. In fact, half immigrant households are on some form of public assistance. With that said, Canada and Australia have pivoted their nations to a merit-based immigration system whereby you select immigrants based on some criteria period that would give you an idea as to whether or not these folks are going to be able to prosper. Education level, technical skills, English language abilities.
What we want to do is take immigration and turn it into a win-win situation. If you select the right people to come here who have the skills that we need without regard to race, ethnicity, or anything. In other words, cast your net wide across all the countries of the globe and pull out the people that can do well here. Once they get here they’ll better their lives and better our lives. And that’s how you make immigration a win-win situation for this nation again.
Gill: Yeah ultimately it ought to be what’s good for us not necessarily what’s good for them. And if it’s good for them that’s great. But ultimately it ought to be our first priority to be what’s good for us. There was a Harvard Harris poll, Dave Ray by the way with us from Federation for American Immigration Reform. Fairus.org. Dave, there was a Harvard Harris poll that showed only two out of 15 Americans are aware of the volume of illegals pouring across the border. You know we don’t know what we don’t know because the media’s not covering the story. How do we do a better job of informing the American people about what’s actually going on in the border?
Ray: Well it’s not because groups like FAIR aren’t screaming bloody murder. We actually now are sending teams down to the border to report live from there. We were just in El Paso about a month ago. But honestly, Steve, if you don’t watch Fox News you would think that everything is hunky dory at the border. Now if you find a border patrol agent on TV somewhere they’re going to be telling you that the wheels are coming off the cart. We’re overwhelmed. We’re letting in hundreds of thousands of people who we know nothing about who are gaming our asylum system. But outside of Fox…
Gill: Yeah it was something like a third of those that come with minor children, it’s not their minor child. They’re not related to them. They’re just being distributed. Ok here’s the kid that will get you into America. And then when they get here, they get across the border. What’s happening to those kids?
Ray: Well they’re gaming our asylum system. The rule is that there’s a law in the United States its called the Flores Agreement and it’s one of the things that President Trump would change. If you arrive with a child in tow then you can only be detained for twenty days because of that child. So what we have now is a massive child smuggling ring or people are snatching kids to show up at the border to come in and say, “Hey you know I’m a parent. Here’s my kid, you can’t hold me for more than twenty days.” Once those people are released. In some instances, we’re seeing the kids are sent back over the border into Mexico to come in with a new group of adults claiming to be a new family. So they are totally gaming the system. In reality of all of the people who are coming in. And like you said there where one hundred thousand who were apprehended last month most of whom who are applying for political asylum in the US on meritless cases. Only about twelve percent of them will actually be granted asylum. But it doesn’t matter. They’re not going to show up for their hearings. They’re not going to file the paperwork. They’re going to disappear into the interior of the country and try to find a job with fake identification that they purchase.
Gill: Well its interesting the Democrats that want these people to come in don’t want them in their communities. They just want them in our country. They don’t want them in Nancy Pelosi’s neighborhood. They don’t want them in Chuck Schumer’s neighborhood. And the idea that President Trump was going to start transporting them to the districts of these sanctuary cities that say they want them. And they pitched a hissy fit. They don’t want them in their neighborhoods. They just want them in our neighborhoods.
Ray: Oh, absolutely. You know Nancy Pelosi actually called the border wall immoral. So this is a wall that we would put up that is called for by the border patrol that would protect our families from people and things like drugs that we don’t want into our country. But that’s immoral. However if you go to Nancy Pelosi’s Napa Valley estate, what do you find around her house? A giant wall. Let me tell you, it’s very effective because they’ve arrested people trying to scale it protesting against Nancy Pelosi.
There’s a lot of Washington double talk coming on here. The Democrats know that illegal immigration is bad for the country. Even sanctuary states like California are starting to throw tantrums when President Trump is flying in some of these asylees. They want their state to be a sanctuary state so you send them a plane full of illegal immigrants and they protest. So what exactly is this other than perhaps a statement that we are woke. We are open to, we’re a sanctuary state that means we’re all woke but when the rubber hits the road we really don’t want these illegal aliens dumped on us anymore than anyone else does.
Gill: Dave Ray the communications director at Fairus.org. They’re fighting for US immigration policies that would actually be good for us. The bottom line Dave is, this is a political issue. How is it playing politically, particularly in those battleground states? In the Michigan’s in the Ohio’s? That are seeing their jobs lost to illegals. That are seeing the crime rates rise thanks to illegals. The national security issues caused by illegals that we don’t vet that just kind of enter no matter where they’re from. How do you see it playing particularly in those battleground states in 2020?
Ray: Well politically is still a very strong issue. And the Republican party does have some explaining to do though because it had control of the House and control of the Senate for the first two years of the President’s term and did not get any decent bill passed. And that was all because of Paul Ryan I can tell you that. But I think immigration is going to be bigger in 2020 than it was in 2016. I think President Trump is going to be able to capitalize on that. I think the Democrats are going to show how far out of touch they are with their sanctuary mentality and their open borders mentality and their abolishing ICE mentality. And this is an issue if played correctly can help President Trump once again.
Gill: Dave Ray from FAIR. Fairus.org on the web. Federation for American Immigration Reform. Great to catch up. Keep us posted as this legislation moves ahead.
Listen to the full segment here:
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