MANCHESTER, New Hampshire — Incumbent Democratic Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) wants to keep importing foreign workers–both legally and illegally–to take jobs away from New Hampshire’s citizens, former Sen. Scott Brown said at Thursday night’s debate.
“Since the senator brought up the border and the immigration bill, I think it’s important to discuss that once this bill–the bill that the senator is referring to–would have been passed and the president signs it, it immediately gives him the ability to give preference to people who are recently here on jobs,” Brown said during the final debate Thursday night. “I want to fight for jobs for New Hampshire. If you read the recent article about the jobs that are right now going to illegal immigrants and people who are new to our state, 70 percent of them are going to those people. I want to make sure that we can protect jobs right here right now.”
Brown a recent study from the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) which found that despite native-born population growth in New Hampshire of at least 65 percent since 2000, a whopping 71 percent of jobs in New Hampshire since then have gone to both legal and illegal immigrants.
The study was first reported by Breitbart News and has since been highlighted by the Drudge Report and other influential media outlets.
“Job growth in New Hampshire has not been very strong,” Steven Camarota, CIS’s research director and the report’s co-author, said in a statement accompanying the report’s release. “The situation for natives without a college education has been particular bad. Thus, it is surprising that many of New Hampshire’s politicians supported the Gang of Eight bill, which would give work authorization to illegal immigrants and dramatically increase the number of foreign workers allowed into the country in the future.”
Brown slammed Shaheen on immigration multiple times in the final debate, lighting her up over supporting the president’s planned executive amnesty–and for voting for the Senate “Gang of Eight” bill.
The topic first came up when debate co-moderator James Pindell of WMUR asked Brown to detail for the voters of New Hampshire what his plan is to secure the border.
“The cost is very minimal in terms of the safety and security of our country,” Brown said in response. “It’s the number one priority right now. We have to make sure that we secure the border. Obviously, that’s fences, walls, surveillance, infrared, troops, border security personnel, natural resources. It’s not secure. I voted twice to secure the border and send troops. Sen. Shaheen opposes that effort. It is the number one issue in people’s minds right now because people are deeply concerned not only about people coming through who are not here legally, but people who may be [having] criminal intent or terrorist intent or carrying some kind of disease or another. We have to make sure that happens.”
Brown then ripped Shaheen for supporting Obama’s planned executive amnesty.
“In addition to that, the president is also seeking–as part of immigration–to legalize upwards of 11 million people and give them enhanced benefits,” Brown said. “I disagree with that. I will go to the funding source and make sure that that doesn’t happen. He’s preparing it right now. Sen. Shaheen agrees with that effort. I do not.”
Shaheen, when asked by Pindell if she supports Obama’s planned executive amnesty, actually said she does not. She instead called for passage of the “Gang of Eight” bill.
“I don’t think the president should take any action on immigration because we’ve got a bill on the floor that the Senate passed with a strong bipartisan vote that accomplishes comprehensive immigration reform. What it is does is secure the border. It does that by building 700 miles of border fencing. It almost doubles the number of border guards who are there. It increases surveillance and interdiction–all of the things that Sen. Brown said he wanted to do are part of that legislation including an E-Verify system so people who are hiring can determine if they’re hiring legal or illegal immigrants who are in this country. It also provides for surveillance and interdiction efforts. The fact is that bill had the support of Sen. [Kelly] Ayotte, it has the support of Sen. [John] McCain, Sen. [Marco] Rubio. It has a strong bipartisan vote. It’s the kind of bill we should pass if we’re going to address this issue.”
Later, Shaheen said previous comments by Brown about diseases potentially crossing the border in illegal aliens were fear mongering.
“I want to go back to the border question because one of the things that my opponent has said in the last couple days is that we have got to close the border because we have people coming across with Polio and other diseases,” she said. “You know, the fact is we haven’t had Polio in this hemisphere since the early 90s. So this is another effort to scare people about what’s happening at our border.”
Brown responded to that point curtly by noting that yes, there are Polio-like diseases crossing the border at this time.
“The enterovirus, which has Polio-like systems, is real. It’s in our country right now. That’s what I was referring to,” Brown fired back.