The Great Texas GOP Immigration Debate of 2014: 'Texas Solution' Gone
FORT WORTH, Texas—The Republican Party of Texas (RPT) 2014 Convention delegates hammered out a new Immigration Plank in the closing minutes of the biennial event that represents the largest gathering of Republicans in the United States. The new platform plank recognizes the historical significance immigration has played from the earliest of days of this nation. It also strongly presents the need for reforming our “broken, embattled and outdated immigration system” along with the necessity of securing the borders and ports of this nation. The term "Texas Solution" is gone from the official Republican of Party of Texas Platform and the new language removes any type of guest worker program.
As the official text of the RPT has not yet been made available, Breitbart Texas has obtained a copy of the amendment that was written and submitted by Senate District (SD) 17 delegate, Peter Batura. This language was adopted unchanged by the body of the convention and was substituted for the entirety of the Platform’s Immigration Plank proposed by the Permanent Platform Committee chaired by RPT Treasurer Tom Mechler who was representing SD 28.
The work on this platform plank has been underway by groups on all sides of the issues since the close of the 2012 RPT Convention two years ago. Early last week, members of the Temporary Platform Committee began countless hours of deliberation and testimony from convention delegates. On Wednesday night, the Temporary Platform Committee deliberated from early in the morning until nearly midnight. Thursday morning the Permanent Platform Committee members were elected by their SDs and a packed room heard testimony until nearly 10 p.m.
Saturday morning, debate on the Platform Committee Report began and the Immigration Plank below was inserted into the Platform and approved. Shortly after the debate ended on the Immigration Plank, the entire platform was adopted by the Convention and the meeting was adjourned for another two years.
Following is the draft of the amendment drafted by Batura that was incorporated into the platform. This document as published on the website of the NE Tarrant County Tea Party. The document is being provided in its entirety for your review:
Amendment to Preliminary 2014 Platform of the Republican Party of Texas
Submitted by Peter Batura, SD 17
America is proudly a nation of immigrants. Throughout our history, our nation has attracted productive, industrious and gifted people to America because she is exceptional, and those immigrants and their descendants helped make America the world’s unrivaled economic and military superpower. It remains imperative to create fair and consistent procedures that will again enable freedom-loving, hard-working and law-abiding immigrants to join us, by providing them an efficient, practical method of legal entry, so they can lawfully take positions where their labor is needed, without exploitation or harassment.
Our national interests are poorly served by our broken, embattled, and outdated immigration system, and patchwork attempts to mend its deficiencies will not prepare us to continue to meet the challenges of an increasingly complex global economy that demands the legal movement of people to fill jobs at all skill levels. An efficient, pro-family and market-based system will provide a more workable solution that is compassionate, equitable and respects the rule of law.
But by failing to create a rational and effective system that encourages and facilitates legal immigration to the benefit of the nation, Congress has forced states to deal with the consequences of a broken immigration system, including human, sex and drug trafficking, the direct criminal activities of cartels and gangs. This situation must end so America can, once again, enjoy the fruits of a vibrant and beneficial system of legal immigration.
In addition, with 92 million Americans not working, the labor force at 36-year low and a lethargic economy, the United States of America can ill-afford a guest worker program designed to depress wages.
The following outlines specific actions needed to address these critical issues:
- Secure the borders through
- Increasing in the number of border security officers
- Increasing joint operations and training with local law enforcement, DPS and the Texas State Guard
- Contiguous physical barrier coupled with electronic, infrared and visual monitoring
- Ending In-State Tuition for Illegal Immigrants
- Enhancing state smuggling laws
- Prohibiting sanctuary cities
- Prohibiting the knowing employment of illegal immigrants
- Providing civil liability protections for landowners against illegal immigrants
- Protecting the ability of law enforcement officers to inquire of the status of someone in custody
- Modernizing Current Immigration Laws to address the following:
- Any form of Amnesty should not be granted, including the granting of legal status to persons in the country illegally
- We support replacement of the current employment visa system with an efficient cost effective system
- We support ending country of origin quotas
- We support ending the annual green card lottery
- Once the borders are verifiably secure, and E-Verify system use is fully enforced, creation of a visa classification for non-specialty industries which have demonstrated actual and persistent labor shortages
Bob Price is a staff writer and a member of the original Breitbart Texas team. Follow him on Twitter @BobPriceBBTX.