2016 Candidates Stance on Immigration—Ted Cruz
Official Immigration Plan
The three central facets of Cruz’s plan: secure the border, restore the rule of law, and reform legal immigration to protect Americans. | Official Candidate Website
FAIR offers the following analysis on five key immigration issues: amnesty; legal immigration; border security; interior enforcement; and taxpayer benefits to illegal aliens.
In his plan, Cruz points out that President Obama has issued at least 20 executive memoranda that grant amnesty, ignore the law, and worsen our immigration problems. He pledges to “shut down President Obama’s unconstitutional amnesty on day one” and “end the lawlessness with the stroke of a pen.”
Cruz would “halt any increases in legal immigration as long as American unemployment remains unacceptably high” because “the purpose of legal immigration should be to grow the economy, not to displace American workers.” While he previously supported legislation to increase the number of workers admitted on H-1B visas, his plan calls for “a suspension of the issuance of all H-1B visas for 180 days to investigate and audit the program and then institute a number of reforms to the system to protect American workers.” Additionally, Cruz would enforce the public-charge doctrine to “ensure [legal immigrants] do not receive government assistance, which defies the law and harms American taxpayers.” Finally, he vows to end birthright citizenship, chain migration, and other visa programs and strategies that “do not serve national goals.”
The first priority of Cruz’s plan is to secure the U.S.-Mexico border. He calls for the construction of a wall that “keeps people out and is technology-supported and law enforcement-accessible.” To augment the effectiveness of the wall, Cruz would “triple the number of Border Patrol agents” as well as “increase vital aerial surveillance and other technology along the border.” Furthermore, he pledges to complete implementation of a biometric entry-exit tracking system by the end of his first year in office.
The Cruz plan calls for greater interior enforcement, which has been systematically dismantled under the Obama administration. Cruz would “rededicate the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to fully enforce the law, including through increased deportations and returns.” He would also end the harmful “catch-and-release” policy and “return illegal immigrants who are caught at our borders and ports to their countries of origin.” Cruz would also protect the safety of Americans by ending sanctuary city policies, signing Kate’s law, and deporting criminal aliens. Regarding workplace enforcement, Cruz would expand and strengthen E-Verify to “ensure that employers are not hiring illegal immigrants.” While he would require E-Verify for all federal contractors and attempt to make use of the system effortless, he stops short of making it mandatory in the private sector.
Taxpayer Benefits to Illegal Aliens
According to Cruz, “on average, each household headed by an illegal immigrant in the United States receives over $14,000 in net government benefits per year.” Cruz pledges that “under a Cruz administration, illegal immigrants will cease receiving government benefits.”