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Romney outlines immigration vision to Latino officials

  • McClatchy Newspapers
  • Published Thursday, June 21, 2012, at 12:51 p.m.

Mitt Romney plans to talk about immigration Thursday at the National Association of Latino Elected Officials conference in Orlando, and appears to be offering few new proposals.

He does not plan to go as far as President Barack Obama, who Friday said his administration would stop deporting thousands of young undocumented workers.

Instead, a Romney campaign statement said, "Mitt Romney believes that young illegal immigrants who were brought to the United States as children should have the chance to become permanent residents, and eventually citizens, by serving honorably in the United States military."

His strategy, says a statement from his campaign, will also aim to attract "high-skill immigrants start companies, create jobs, and drive innovation at an especially high rate."

The statement notes that "We have set the caps on high-skill visas so low that, for some countries, an entire year’s quota has been filled in an hour. Mitt Romney will ask Congress to raise the caps on visas for highly skilled immigrants."

The campaign also found that many limits on immigration from specific nations is so law "that America is losing some of the best and brightest to our international competitors. Mitt Romney will work with Congress to raise the country caps."

He plans to discuss ways to make the temporary visa system functional.

"As president, Mitt Romney will make the system for bringing in temporary agricultural workers and other seasonal workers functional for both employers and immigrants. We should get rid of unnecessary requirements that delay issuance of a visa, and we should speed the processing of applications," the campaign said.

He is to pledge tougher border security, and "complete a high-tech fence to enhance border security."

And, the campaign said, "Miit Romney will develop an effective, mandatory employment verification system that will enable employers to be sure that those they hire are eligible to work. This will discourage illegal immigrants from coming to America to seek jobs."

It pledged a "a legal immigration system that works. This will offer an alternative to those who would otherwise enter illegally. For instance, reforming our current temporary worker program will offer employers who need such staff a legal option to find employees."

Too often, the campaign said, "legal immigrants in America often have to wait years to be with husbands, wives, and minor children. As president, Mitt Romney will ensure that husbands, wives, and their minor children are brought together on a timely basis."

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