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Rick Santorum | NumbersUSA - For Lower Immigration Levels

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Rick Santorum

 

Candidate Page
Updated: 02/23/12
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Republican Convention:

Month
Aug
Day
27
Year
2012

Tell Rick Santorum how he can do better on immigration:

Rating Sources

Instructions

Click on individual ratings to view quotes and other source materials for that rating.


Oppose Amnesty/Legalization
  • Sen. Santorum earned an A+ on stopping amnesties while in Congress. And he has challenged his own Catholic Church leaders as well as other candidates for supporting the legalization of millions of people who have broken immigration laws.
  • On December 8, 2011, Sen. Santorum said, "You can't be here for 20 years and commit only one illegal act ... because everything you're doing while you're here is against the law.... I understand Congressman Gingrich saying, 'Well, you know, people have been here and they've been good citizens and paying taxes.' Yeah, under somebody else's Social Security number because you stole it."
    Source: http://www.spencerdailyreporter.com/story/1792427.html
  • During his time in the United States Senate, Sen. Santorum consistently voted against amnesties for illegal aliens (despite voting for the small amnesty for Cubans and Nicaraguans in 1997), earning an A+ grade in that category.
    Source: http://www.numbersusa.com/content/my/congress/683/reportcard/CAREER/
  • In a December 13, 2011 interview with Iowa Public Television, Sen. Santorum made the following comments regarding the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops' pro-amnesty statement: "If we develop the program like the Catholic bishops suggested we would be creating a huge magnet for people to come in and break the law some more.... We’d be inviting people to cross this border, come into this country and with the expectation that they will be able to stay here permanently.... We have to have rules and we have to keep those rules in America, or we would be a magnet for more people who want to break the law,” he said during his interview for Iowa Public Television. Santorum warned against any immigration policy that would slight "all the families who are doing it the right way" and those "who are separating from their families" and "making those sacrifices..... And then we say well, everybody who broke the law came here and we’re going to let you in – and those folks, well, sorry, you’re chumps, you played by the rules."
    Source: http://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/santorum-questions-us-bishops-immigration-policy/
  • At the Republican debate on September 7, 2011, Sen. Santorum said: "We are going to secure the border first, and that's the most important thing to do, then we'll have the [amnesty] discussion afterwards."
    Source: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/08/us/politics/08republican-debate-text.html?pagewanted=all
  • In a January 24, 2011, interview, Sen Santorum said: "No, I wouldn't give amnesty, but I would look at securing the border, and I do think we need more people coming to this nation who want to be Americans to grow this economy. When you open up the spigot a little bit more, that gives people the opportunity to go back to Mexico and not have to wait 10 years to come back to this country, maybe wait a relatively short period of time, and come in the right way, and come in so they can stay and they can prosper..."
    Source: http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/qarick-santorum-discusses-controlling-de
  • On his 2006 Senate reelection website, Sen. Santorum wrote: "Giving blanket amnesty, approving guest worker programs masked as amnesty, or charging nominal fines to become an American citizen mocks and demeans the sacrifices of legal immigrants. Illegally crossing our border and breaking our immigration laws must carry real and serious consequences."
    Source: http://classic-web.archive.org/web/20060711215552/http://www.ricksantorum.com/Issues/Read.aspx?ID=6

Mandate E-Verify

Reduce Overall Immigration
  • Sen. Santorum gave mixed signals through 2011 but at the beginning of 2012 he stated directly that overall immigration numbers should come down. He misses an EXCELLENT rating because he at this time is advocating only about half the reductions recommended by the bi-partisan U.S. Commission on Immigration Reform.
  • On January 13, 2011, Sen. Santorum said, "we need to shrink [immigration] a little bit in those two areas (referring to the visa lottery and chain migration)."
    Source: http://www.c-span.org/Events/Candidates-in-SC-Try-to-Convince-Local-GOP-Leaders/10737427095/

End Chain Migration
  • Sen. Santorum had a good chain migration voting record while in Congress and has improved, but not perfected, his stance on this issue. He has made it clear that immigrants should not be allowed to bring in their non-nuclear family, but he has not defined the terms or put forward a plan on how chain migration should be scaled back.
  • On January 13, 2011, Sen. Santorum said, "[Immigrants] should come to this country based on a whole bunch of different criteria and one of them should not be chain immigration where relatives come into the country because somebody is here. Immediate family is one thing, but extended family is a very different thing."
    Source: http://www.c-span.org/Events/Candidates-in-SC-Try-to-Convince-Local-GOP-Leaders/10737427095/

End Visa Lottery
  • Although Sen. Santorum supported the visa lottery during his time in the Senate, he has since come out against the lottery, even calling it "silly." Santorum receives an Excellent in this category.
  • Sen. Santorum's campaign website contains the following: "Prioritize admittance of legal immigrants by what is good for our country rather than lottery system."
    Source: http://www.ricksantorum.com/immigration-reform-securing-and-strengthening-america
  • On January 13, 2011, Sen. Santorum said, "the fact that we have a lottery system for people to come into this country is, in a word, silly. People should not be in a lottery to determine whether they come to this country."
    Source: http://www.c-span.org/Events/Candidates-in-SC-Try-to-Convince-Local-GOP-Leaders/10737427095/
  • Sen. Santorum's thinking has improved from his time in the Senate in the 1990s when he twice voted in support of the visa lottery.

Limit Unfair Worker Competition
  • While in Congress, Sen. Santorum worked to bring more foreign workers into the United States and he continued this message early in his campaign. However, he has moderated his stance on foreign workers and has even recognized that economic factors may necessitate reducing the number of foreign workers the United States imports.
  • On January 13, 2011, Sen. Santorum said, "America needs to look for people who want to come here and be Americans and want to contribute to this country. And I'm not saying we bring over all the rocket scientists into this country, we need a variety of different people and skills, but we need to look at it from that perspective. Not just economically -- that's part of it."
    Source: http://www.c-span.org/Events/Candidates-in-SC-Try-to-Convince-Local-GOP-Leaders/10737427095/
  • During the November 22, 2011 GOP presidential debate, Sen. Santorum was asked his opinion regarding high-skilled immigration. He replied with the following ambiguous response: "Well, as the son of a legal immigrant to this country, I strongly believe in legal immigration and believe we are that shining city on the hill, that our future -- if you look at all of the jobs that are being created in our economy today, a huge percentage of them come from the legal immigrants of this county -- country who have innovated, who created great products, who created great companies and employed lots of people."
    Source: http://transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/1111/22/se.06.html
  • In a January 24, 2011 interview, Sen. Santorum said the United States needs more foreign workers: "I do think we need more people coming to this nation who want to be Americans to grow this economy. You want to fix the Social Security problem? Let's have more workers producing and helping out the situation.... For me, I'm willing to allow increased immigration to this country..."
    Source: http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/qarick-santorum-discusses-controlling-de

Secure Border & Fence
  • Sen. Santorum in 2011 debates has strongly supported building the fence, backing it with sufficient personnel, as well as mentioning the need to stop employers from creating the incentive with jobs.
  • At the GOP Presidential debate on September 12, 2011, Sen. Santorum said: "I believe we need to build more fence. I need -- I believe that we need to secure the border using technology and more personnel. And until we build that border, we should neither have storm troopers come in and throw people out of the country nor should we provide amnesty. What we should do is enforce the laws in this country with respect to employers, and we should secure the border. And then after the border is secured, then we can deal with the problem that are in this country."
    Source: http://transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/1109/12/se.06.html
  • In a January 24, 2011 interview, Sen. Santorum said he would take whatever steps necessary to secure our border, using whatever physical, technological, and human resources are necessary. He misses an EXCELLENT rating because he doesn't provide enough specifics on how he would secure the border.
    Source: http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/qarick-santorum-discusses-controlling-de
  • At the Republican debate on September 7, 2011, Sen. Santorum said: "We are going to secure the border first, and that's the most important thing to do..."
    Source: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/08/us/politics/08republican-debate-text.html?pagewanted=all

Implement Entry/Exit
  • Sen. Santorum in 2002 voted in favor of an entry/exit system. However, he has not addressed this issue since leaving the Senate.

Support Local Enforcement
  • Sen. Santorum has come out strong in support of state and local law enforcement agencies that want to help the federal government to enforce immigration laws. For this reason, he receives an Excellent grade.
  • At the Republican presidential debate on February 22, 2012, Sen. Santorum said, "I think what we need to do is to give law enforcement the opportunity to do what they're doing here in Arizona and what Sheriff Arpaio was doing before he ran into some issues with the federal government, which is to allow folks to enforce the law here in this country, to allow people who are breaking the law or suspicious of breaking the law to be able to be detained and deported if they're found here in this country illegally, as well as those who are trying to seek employment."
    Source: http://www.cfr.org/us-election-2012/republican-debate-transcript-mesa-arizona-february-2012/p27432?cid=rss-essentialdocuments-republican_debate_transcript,_-022212
  • On January 13, 2011, Sen. Santorum said, "I was talking with a sheriff over in York County who is one of the sheriffs who can and has the funds from the federal government to be able to work with the federal government to help when they arrest people... who are illegals to be able to deport them. Most counties and the states cannot do that because they are not provided the resources to do it or the cooperation. We need to make sure that counties and states have the resources to be able to do something that the federal government obviously hasn't been doing and that is enforce the law."
    Source: http://www.c-span.org/Events/Candidates-in-SC-Try-to-Convince-Local-GOP-Leaders/10737427095/

Punish Business Violators
  • During his time in the United States Senate, Sen. Santorum was not forced to vote on legislation dealing with employers who hire illegal aliens. But during a debate on Sept. 12, 2011, Sen. Santorum said we should enforce existing laws with respect to employers who knowingly hire illegal aliens.

Tackle Refugee Fraud
  • During his time in the United States Senate, Sen. Santorum was not forced to vote on legislation dealing with refugees. Since leaving the Senate, Sen. Santorum has not discussed refugee issues.

End Birthright Citizenship
  • During his time in the United States Senate, Sen. Santorum did not take any action on birthright citizenship and has not discussed the issue since leaving the Senate.
  • On December 8, 2011, Sen. Santorum is quoted as saying the following when asked about the anchor baby issue: "[I'm] torn on the issue, but it is a symptom of a porous border which must be addressed first."
    Source: http://www.spencerdailyreporter.com/story/1792427.html
  • During the October 18, 2011 GOP presidential debate, Sen. Santorum was asked point blank about preventing the children of illegal aliens from receiving automatic citizenship at birth and he refused to answer the question.
    Source: http://archives.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/1110/18/se.05.html