Are any of you Marin/Sonoma voters? If you are, we may at long last have a viable Republican candidate. A man I know, Todd Hooper, is running as a Republican for Marin/Sonoma. He's a quiet, thoughtful, intelligent, hardworking man, with a lovely family. Please check out his website. And, if you're the voting type (and you'd better be), I think you'll want to support him in the June 6 primary. You'll discover on Todd's issue statements section that, if you agree with what I write, you'll probably agree with what he supports. Here he is on immigration:
Our current immigration crisis is the result of decades of poor decision-making, and will take several years to resolve. The millions of illegal immigrants cause several problems. Local communities shoulder tremendous burdens in costs of medical and social services. A small but destructive portion of illegal immigrants are members of drug gangs, poisoning our communities and leading to increased drug use and violence. For some members of our community, there is a sense of cultural erosion due to illegal immigration. I believe this sense is largely due to that fact that many illegal immigrants do not speak English and this is permeating our everyday lives.
Faced with these circumstances we need to do three things. First, we must stop the inflow of illegal immigrants. Every day, we intercept 4,000 people trying to enter the U.S. illegally from Mexico. Another 1,500 people elude our efforts. We need to apply un-manned drones and other high-tech sensing equipment, supported by the requisite manpower.
Second, we need to reduce the number of illegal immigrants in the U.S., largely through better enforcement of existing laws at the local level. These efforts should be reinforced through a three-year program in which Federal spending increases from current levels for communities taking steps to reduce illegal immigrants and decreases for communities not taking such steps. However, calls to make felonies of good Samaritans and illegal immigrants are counter-productive and unnecessary.
Third, we need to assimilate a substantial portion of illegal immigrants into our society, for two reasons. While we can markedly reduce the number of illegal immigrants, practically speaking we cannot remove all of them. Also, our long-term interests are best served by assimilating those people who contribute to our society and wish to be our fellow citizens. Immigrants will play an increasingly important role in our economy as our population continues to age. More importantly, immigrants from all nations add to our vibrancy, long one of our core strengths. My wife and her family immigrated and became U.S. citizens, so we take this very personally.
To accomplish this, we need to create a path that recognizes that immigration laws have been broken (e.g., through fines) and that citizenship is something to be earned over time. And we must ensure these people speak English, since a common language is a critical element of an open, shared, and productive culture.
We are indeed a nation of laws and a nation of immigrants. We can and should honor this concept.
Vote for Todd Hooper!