Saturday, June 22, 2024

Jeb Bush wants to ‘politely ask’ undocumented immigrants to leave U.S.

Jeb Bush

The 2016 presidential race is far from decided, but sound bites from presidential hopefuls have begun to trickle down the pipeline, stirring the pot and adding yet more speculation in an already-complicated field. Most recently, Jeb Bush, former Florida governor, brother of President George W. Bush and a widely considered frontrunner for the Republican presidential nomination, addressed attendees at an automotive industry event in San Francisco, candidly thinking aloud about future immigration policy and undocumented immigrants overstaying their visa allowances.

“First and foremost, we need to control our border. A great nation needs to control its border, not just at the border, which is hugely important, but also the 40 percent of the people that have come here illegally came with a legal visa and overstayed their bounds. We ought to be able to figure out where they are and politely ask them to leave,” Bush said during his January 23 speech.

Bush, whose wife, Columba, is Mexican-American, has been a major proponent of comprehensive immigration reform in the past and has acknowledged the benefit of opening the country up to immigration. An “engine of economic vitality,” as he described immigrants writ large, he also called for a path for legalized status for those still hiding in the shadows.

“We have a history of allowing people to come in legally to embrace our values and pursue their dreams in a way that creates prosperity for all of us,” Bush said. “No country can do this like America. Historically, the unwritten contract has been: come legally to our country, embrace our values, learn English, work and you can be as American as anyone else.”

Still, his comments have struck a chord with Latino leaders nationwide who thought Bush and his potential immigration policies would stand out from the rest of the GOP pack. Eerily reminiscent of Mitt Romney’s self-deportation policies presented in his 2012 campaign, perhaps this hiccup will provide room for growth in Bush’s future campaigning.

Latin Post