Politics

The Democratic Party’s Stance On Immigration Has Shifted Dramatically In The Past 8 Years

(Photo by J. Emilio Flores/Getty Images)

Alex Pfeiffer White House Correspondent
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A draft of the 2016 Democratic Party platform was released Friday containing a section on immigration that shows how far left the party has moved on immigration in the past 8 years.

“We cannot continue to allow people to enter the United States undetected, undocumented, and unchecked. The American people are a welcoming and generous people, but those who enter our country’s borders illegally, and those who employ them, disrespect the rule of the law.” Those might sound like words from the Republican Party of today, but they are in fact from the Democratic Party’s 2008 platform.

[dcquiz] It goes on to say, “We need to secure our borders, and support additional personnel, infrastructure, and technology on the border and at our ports of entry. We need additional Customs and Border Protection agents equipped with better technology and real-time intelligence.”

The 2012 platform also makes a reference to border security. “Today, the Southwest border is more secure than at any time in the past 20 years. Unlawful crossings are at a 40-year low, and the Border Patrol is better staffed than at any time in its history. We are continuing to work to hold employers accountable for whom they hire.”

The draft that was released Friday has no mention of border security. Instead, it says, “immigration is not a problem to be solved.” The 2016 draft platform proposes eliminating the three-year, ten-year, and permanent immigration bars that were signed into law by President Bill Clinton.

“We will work with Congress to end the lengthy, forced, and prolonged expulsion from the country that many immigrants endure when trying to adjust their status by rescinding the three- year, ten-year and permanent bars,” the platform states. The three-year bar is applicable for re-entry of immigrants who have more than six months of illegal presence. The ten-year bar stops re-entry for aliens who have more than one year of illegal presence.

The 2016 draft platform goes on to say, “We will invest in immigrant integration services, expand access to English language education, and promote naturalization to help the millions of people who are eligible for citizenship take that last step.”

In 2008 the Democrats were more firm on requirements for citizenship. “We support a system that requires undocumented immigrants who are in good standing to pay a fine, pay taxes, learn English, and go to the back of the line for the opportunity to become citizens.”

The draft of the new Democratic platform goes to on to say it will expand immigration for refugees through more additional granting of humanitarian parole and Temporary Protected Status.