Tim Pawlenty on Immigration

Last Updated : Aug 11, 2011

Summary

Governor Pawlenty's record on immigration is mixed. In most statements, Governor Pawlenty seems to support the validity of US immigration laws while in other statements he supports amnesty and notes the impractical nature of enforcing the law. He has taken some steps to curve illegal immigration in Minnesota, but those steps have coincided with elections. 

In 2006 and 2008, Governor Pawlenty proposed numerous measures to better enforce immigration laws. These measures included proposed legislative measures to prohibit city "sanctuary" ordinances, strengthened human trafficking laws, increased penalties for identify theft, and enhanced penalties for employers who knowingly hire illegal immigrants. These measure were not enacted.

In a 2009 Washington Times interview, Governor Pawlenty stated that there can’t ba a large segment of the population flouting or violating the law and others large segment nodding and winking as there is with immigration law. He noted that it corrodes respect for the law.

However, a few months later in a Newsweek interview, Governor Pawlenty stated that deporting those who broke immigration laws was not feasible. He stated that anyone who had not broken additional laws should be granted a pathway to citizenship.

In multiple interviews and press statements, Governor Pawlenty supported the Arizona law to allow the state to enforce immigration laws by determining the immigration status of anyone already in contact with police. He noted numerous times that the law was being mischaracterized and did not racially profile or impose undue burdens on citizens.

In an August 2010 interview, Governor Pawlenty stated that he would consider supporting a revision to the 14th amendment to clarify that children born illegally in the US will not be granted citizenship status.

Governor Pawlenty addresses the problem of illegal immigration mostly through employer verification and enforcement. He notes that systems such as e-verify should be mandatory and that removing the incentive for people to come here illegally will be the best fix for illegal immigration.

 

Immigration Proposals

In 2006 and 2008, Governor Pawlenty proposed numerous measures to better enforce immigration laws. These measures included proposed legislative measures to prohibit city "sanctuary" ordinances, strengthened human trafficking laws, increased penalties for identify theft, and enhanced penalties for employers who knowingly hire illegal immigrants. In a press statement shown below, he scolded the Minnesota legisature for failing to act on the problem. Governor Pawlenty also issued an executive order that required state law enforcement officers to work with federal agents to enforce immigration laws. The order instructed the Department of Public Safety to review photos on the state's driver's license database for possible fraud. It also requires any new state employees and contractors who do business with the state to verify citizenship through an Internet-based system operated by the federal government.

 

Washington Times Interview

In October of 2009, Governor Pawlenty was interviewed by the Washington Times and asked about his views on immigration. He stated that he was against deporting illegal aliens and against a blanket amnesty. He also stated that the rule of law must be applied. He advocated the tightest possible border security enhanced by an electronic Social Security verification system so employers don’t unknowingly hire illegal immigrants. Deportation should depend on factors such as how long the illegal has been in the country.

 

NewsWeek Interview

In December of 2009, Governor Pawlenty was interviewed by NewsWeek and asked about President Obama's plans to grant amnesty to illegal immigrants.

 

TampaBay.com Interview

In January of 2011, Governor Pawlenty was interviewed by TampaBay.com and discussed the Arizona immigration law. He states that the law has been micharacterized. 

 

CNN Appearance

On April 27, 2010 Governor Pawlenty appeared on CNN and spoke about immigration, the Arizona immigration law, and what could be done in the future.

 

Meet the Press Across America Interview

In May of 2010, Governor Pawlenty was interviewed by Meet the Press Across America and was asked about the Arizona immigration law and his overall views on immigration. He states that he supports Arizona's efforts and that the federal government should do more to end illegal immigration.

 

Response to Arizona SB10 Ruling

In June of 2010, Governor Pawlenty responded to a supreme court ruling on Arizona's SB 10. He supported the supreme court's ruling upholding Arizona's right to enforce immigration laws.

 

Heritage Foundation Address

In June of 2010, Governor Pawlenty stated in an address to the Heritage Foundation that SB1070 did not promote racial profiling, but did require numerous benchmarks before immigration status can be determined.

 

Political Capital Interview

In August of 2010, Governor Pawlenty was interviewed by Political Capital and stated that he would support changing the 14th amendment to clarify that illegal aliens born in this country are not granted citizenship.

 

National Press Club Statement

When taking questions at the National Press Club, Governor Pawlenty spoke about the effects of allowing people to continually violate laws within the country. He states that he supports securing the border and states that illegal immigration must addressed at the lure for people to come here illegally. He states that employers should be moves to an e-verify type system to allow employers to verify the status of an immigrant.

 

 

Conference of Hispanic Republicans Address

In January of 2011, Governor Pawlenty spoke to the Conference of Hispanic Republicans. Although he did not outline a plan for immigration, he stated that US immigration laws were valid.

 

Iowa Campaign Statement

During a campaign event in Iowa, Governor Pawlenty was asked about immigration policies. He stated that he did not support amnesty because it was unfair.

 

Miami Herald Interview

In August of 2011, Governor Pawlenty was interviewed by the Miami Herald. He is asked about the e-verify system and whehter or not it should be mandated. He states that he would support requiring employers to use e-verify.

 

References

[1] Website: Newsweek Article: Tim Pawlenty Gets No Respect Author: Howard Fineman Accessed on: 05/11/2011

[2] Website: Minnesota Public Radio Article: Pawlenty targets illegal immigration Author: Tom Scheck Accessed on: 08/04/2011

[3] Website: Minnesota Public Radio Article: Pawlenty ups the ante on illegal immigration Author: Tom Scheck Accessed on: 08/04/2011

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