Joe Sestak on Immigration

Last Updated : Jun 28, 2010


Congressman Sestak supports amnesty for illegal aliens.  In a question and answer debate with Senator Arlen Specter for the 2010 Democratic primary, Congressman Sestak stated that enforcing the law was not practical and that he favored a comprehensive plan for reform that allowed illegal aliens to pay a fee and receive amnesty.

Congressman Sestaks voting record on immigration is not yet established due to the dominance of other issues during his time in the House.  He does not address immigration on his campaign or official websites. 


Debate Question - Do you support Comprehensive Immigration Reform

In a primary debate between Senator Arlen Specter and Congressman Joe Sestak, each representative was asked if they would support a comprehensive immigration reform plan.  The plans are not detailed.  While answering the question, Congressman Sestak stated that he would indeed favor such a plan.  He then noted that while border security is essential, "ripping away" illegal immigrants from their children is not practical.  He advocates for a plan that would allow illegal aliens to pay a fine, return to the country of origin and then come in when they are allowed to normally.  He does not address the inconsistency with his opposition to enforcing valid US immigration law because it would force the separation of parents and children and his plan which also requires illegals to return home while waiting for their "turn".


Sponsored and Cosponsored Legislation

Session-110; Bill Number-H R 4088; Secure America Through Verification and Enforcement Act of 2007 or SAVE Act of 2007 - Cosponsor

Sets forth border security and enforcement provisions, including provisions respecting: (1) increases in Border Patrol and investigative personnel; (2) recruitment of former military personnel; (3) use of Department of Defense (DOD) equipment; (4) infrastructure improvements; (5) aerial and other surveillance; (5) a national strategy to secure the borders; (6) emergency deployment of Border Patrol agents; and (7) expansion of the Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism along the northern and southern borders. Amends the Immigration and Nationality Act and specified maritime law sections to revise alien smuggling provisions. Sets forth provisions respecting border security on certain federal lands under the jurisdiction of the Secretary of Agriculture or the Secretary of the Interior. Border Law Enforcement Act - Authorizes a border relief grant program for a tribal, state, or local law enforcement agency in a county within 25 miles of the southern border of the United States. Amends the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 to make the basic employment eligibility confirmation pilot program permanent. Sets forth conditions for the mandatory use of the E-verify system. Requires: (1) employer/employee notification of social security number mismatches and multiple uses, and related information sharing with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS); and (2) establishment of electronic birth and death registration systems. Amends the Internal Revenue Code to: (1) penalize specified employers for failure to correct information returns; and (2) prohibit employers from deducting from gross income wages paid to unauthorized aliens, with an exception for an employer participating in the basic employment eligibility confirmation program. Increases criminal alien program (CAP) personnel. Establishes within DHS a rewards program to assist in the elimination of commercial operations to produce or sell fraudulent immigration-related documents and to assist in the investigation, prosecution, or disruption of commercial alien smuggling operations. Provides for: (1) increased alien detention facilities; (2) additional district court judgeships; and (3) a media campaign to inform the public of changes made by this Act including a multilingual media campaign explaining noncompliance penalties.

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