Immigration policy took center stage this morning at American Principles in Action’s Conservative Immigration Forum, where various conservative leaders gathered to lend their opinions to a growing conversation. However, in contrast to voices that have in recent days called for a restrictive approach, speakers at APIA’s event focused on the many ways immigration positively impacts the United States and how our nation’s immigration laws can be constructively reformed in order to both solve current problems and ensure that this country continues to be a welcoming place for those seeking freedom and opportunity.
One proposal on how to do this was presented by Alfonso Aguilar, a regular contributor to The Pulse and the executive director of APIA’s Latino Partnership. Aguilar’s five step plan included measures which would both help bolster enforcement of immigration law (by securing the border, improving workplace enforcement, and implementing an entry/exit registry) as well as provide opportunities for immigrant workers who fill an important role in the American economy (by creating a market-based guest worker program and providing a path to legal status for undocumented immigrants). His remarks drove home the point that the false dichotomy of amnesty versus self-deportation must be transcended:
[T]his is a false choice. There is a third way, a conservative way to approach immigration that is based on the rule of law, but also on the realization that immigration is good for the country and for our economy; and that the market is better equipped than the government to regulate migration flows into the country.