Excerpts from Romney's NALEO speech
June 21st, 2012
12:17 PM ET
3 years ago

Excerpts from Romney's NALEO speech

(CNN) - The Romney campaign released excerpts from the presumptive GOP presidential nominee's upcoming speech to the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials on Thursday.

In his remarks, Romney will outline some of his immigration policies, specifically those in response to President Barack Obama's new ruling against the deportation of certain young illegal immigrants.

EXCERPTS: “Growing Opportunity for All Americans”

Hispanics have been hit disproportionately hard. While national unemployment is still above 8%, Hispanic unemployment is at 11%.

The middle class has been crushed under President Obama. More Americans are living in poverty today than at any point in history. Over two million more Hispanics are living in poverty today than the day President Obama took office.

Home values have plunged, our national debt is at record levels and families are buried under higher prices for food and gasoline.

And yet our President says the private sector is doing fine. This is more than a policy failure; it is a moral failure.

###

Unfortunately, despite his promises, President Obama has failed to address immigration reform.

For two years, this President had huge majorities in the House and Senate – he was free to pursue any policy he pleased. But he did nothing to advance a permanent fix for our broken immigration system. Instead, he failed to act until facing a tough re-election and trying to secure your vote.

Last week, the President finally offered a temporary measure that he seems to think will be just enough to get him through the election. After three and a half years of putting every issue from loan guarantees for his donors to Cash For Clunkers before immigration, now the President has been seized by an overwhelming need to do what he could have done on Day One. I think you deserve better.

Some people have asked if I will let stand the President's executive action. The answer is that I will put in place my own long-term solution that will replace and supersede the President's temporary measure.

As President, I won’t settle for a stop-gap measure. I will work with Republicans and Democrats to find a long-term solution. I will prioritize measures that strengthen legal immigration and make it easier. And I will address the problem of illegal immigration in a civil but resolute manner. We may not always agree, but when I make a promise to you, I will keep it.

###

As I have said many times, it is critical that we redouble our efforts to secure the borders. That means both preventing illegal border crossings and making it harder to illegally overstay a visa. We should field enough border patrol agents, complete a high-tech fence, and implement an improved exit verification system.

Our immigration system should help promote strong families, not keep them apart. Our nation benefits when moms and dads and their kids are all living together under the same roof. But, today, too many families are caught in a broken system that costs them time and money and entangles them in red tape. For those seeking to come to America the right way, that kind of bureaucratic nightmare has to end. And we can do this with just a few common-sense reforms.

As President, I will reallocate Green Cards to those seeking to keep their families under one roof. We will exempt from caps the spouses and minor children of legal permanent residents. And we will eliminate other forms of bureaucratic red tape that keep families from being together.

Immigration reform is not just a moral imperative, but an economic necessity as well. Immigrants with advanced degrees start companies, create jobs, and drive innovation at a high rate. Immigrants founded or cofounded nearly half of our 50 top venture-backed companies. They are nearly 30 percent more likely to start a business. And that kind of risk taking is something we need more than ever because new business starts are now at a 30-year low.

I will work with states and employers to update our temporary worker visa program so that it meets our economic needs.

And if you get an advanced degree here, we want you to stay here – so we will staple a green card to your diploma. We want the best and brightest to enrich the nation through the jobs and technologies they will help create.

We also have a strong tradition in this country of honoring immigrants who join our military and put their lives on the line to keep this country safe. Since September 11, 2001, the United States has naturalized almost 75,000 members of the Armed Forces. Too many of these patriots died on distant battlefields for our freedom before receiving full citizenship here in the country they called “home.”

As President, I will stand for a path to legal status for anyone who is willing to stand up and defend this great nation through military service. Those who have risked their lives in defense of America have earned the right to make their life in America.

But improving access to legal immigration is only one part of the equation. We must also make legal immigration more attractive than illegal immigration, so that people are rewarded for waiting patiently in line. That’s why my administration will establish a strong employment verification system so that every business can know with confidence that the people it hires are legally eligible for employment.

We can find common ground here, and we must. We owe it to ourselves as Americans to ensure that our country remains a land of opportunity – both for those who were born here and for those who share our values, respect our laws, and want to come to our shores.


Filed under: 2012 • Immigration • Latinos • Mitt Romney
soundoff (33 Responses)
  1. Obama 2012 - BEND Forward America, take another 4 long years of FAILURE

    YES! LEGAL IMMIGRATION AND SECURE BORDERS!! Romney knows EXACTLY what the real problems are and how to fix them. None of this illegal Obama BS done for political reasons.

    June 21, 2012 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  2. kakaraka

    What? What about a comprehension immigration reform and DREAM act passed by a democrat back in 2010 and blocked by GOP/Party of No? How low and dishonnest Romney has become. Ridiculous. Keep distoring and lying Mitt. The Hispanics and American people know better. Ask your obstructionist GOP party and vote for the DREAM act and comprehension immigration reform advocated by the President. If the refuse, the executive order will stay on until they do.

    June 21, 2012 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  3. Laverne

    LIAR LIAR, PANTS ON FIRE! Romney immigration stand is exactly what he said in the primaries, self deportation and if you don't go willingly, then he will do it for you!. This is another Etch-A-Sketch moment from Romney!

    June 21, 2012 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  4. AreYouForReal?!

    @BEN DOVER –

    YES!!! HE finally made up his mind!!! Even tho this is EXACTLY THE OPPOSITE of what he said all through the primaries!!! YES!!!

    June 21, 2012 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
  5. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Mittens has to be the biggest liar in the GOP. God, he is disgusting.

    June 21, 2012 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  6. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Mittens would have to self deport his dad.

    June 21, 2012 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  7. Jimm

    Sounds like his standard stump speech.

    June 21, 2012 12:39 pm at 12:39 pm |
  8. Ask Massachusetts

    "We may not always agree, but when I make a promise to you, I will keep it." Mitt Romney

    Ask the people of Massachusetts how good this guy is at keeping promises. And remember, this is the same guy who told another crowd of people that he would veto the DREAM Act and the very same guy that said he would make things so bad for Latinos that they would "self deport." Those are just some other promises that he made before other crowds. So you have to ask yourself: Which promises is this guy planning to actually keep when he has taken just about every side of just about every issue?

    What we have here is a guy who will smile to the camera and say anything to anybody to secure their vote. Oh, yes, he knows he is lying, but to a guy like him, well, the ends justify the means.

    What America does not need is a LYING president.

    June 21, 2012 12:39 pm at 12:39 pm |
  9. Pam from Iowa

    I hope those people laugh this guy all the way out the door!
    Not one he said has any element of truth to it!
    "if you earn a degree here, we will let you stay. But unfortunately we won't let you stay here long enough to get that degree" says Romney.
    The other day I heard him saying that college degrees were a waste of time, and instead of going to college, young folks should ask their parents to loan them $20,000 to start a business! Yeah right Mitt! What parent doesn't have $20,000 just laying around for the asking???

    June 21, 2012 12:42 pm at 12:42 pm |
  10. Obama 2012 - BEND Forward America, NOT a third term of BUSH's years of FAILURE

    Mr Etch A Sketch will say anything to get Latino votes.
    Ron Paul was right when he said that, “Romney is a serial flip-flopper who has been on all sides of all issues, supported bail-outs and provided the blueprint for Obamacare.” – Ron Paul (02/28/2012)

    June 21, 2012 12:42 pm at 12:42 pm |
  11. n

    "We may not always agree, but when I make a promise to you, I will keep it" .As Romney speaks, The virtual Etch-A-Sketch hands of Romney, are shaking him up, down, right and left as he states, "I will work with Republicans and Democrats to find a long-term solution", (Good luck with that). Listen to this omission "For two years, this President had huge majorities in the House and Senate – he was free to pursue any policy he pleased. But he did nothing to advance a permanent fix for our broken immigration system". What Romney failed to mention. The republican obstructionist regime filibustered for the entire 2 years, plotting "This Presidents failure, before he walked through the White House Doors. A true leader would first acknowledge the truth, even if he put himself at risk. A true sign a weak leadership is Romney in the flesh for all to see past, the words of deception, that comes out of his mouth. Romney is not for the average American.

    June 21, 2012 12:42 pm at 12:42 pm |
  12. sammieb51

    Wow, total reversal from his views just 3 short months ago ..... This guy is a real piece of work!! Apparently, he hasn't grasped the reality of VIDEO TAPE.

    June 21, 2012 12:44 pm at 12:44 pm |
  13. n

    "We may not always agree, but when I make a promise to you, I will keep it" .As Romney speaks, The virtual Etch-A-Sketch hands of Romney, are shaking him up, down, right and left as he states, "I will work with Republicans and Democrats to find a long-term solution", (Good luck with that). Listen to this omission "For two years, this President had huge majorities in the House and Senate – he was free to pursue any policy he pleased. But he did nothing to advance a permanent fix for our broken immigration system". What Romney failed to mention. The republican obstructionist regime filibustered for the entire 2 years, plotting "This Presidents failure, before he walked through the White House Doors. A true leader would first acknowledge the truth, even if he put himself at risk. A true sign of weak leadership is Romney in the flesh for all to see pass the words of deception, that comes out of his mouth. Romney is not for the average American.

    June 21, 2012 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  14. K

    Yes, he is a liar. He is a total puppet to the dark lords.

    June 21, 2012 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  15. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    It looks like Fox foreign owned media will have to do a lot of editing for Mittens today.

    June 21, 2012 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  16. Thank You Note

    Cue music and Jimmy Fallon's voice:

    Dear Right Wing of the GOP:

    Thank you for understanding that sometimes a person has to look a person in the face and smile and lie to get what he wants. Thank you for understanding who I'm actually lying to. Of course, you do know who I'm actually lying to, right?

    June 21, 2012 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  17. cali girl

    If the flip flop boy Robmey needs to make a decision, it will ONLY be the exact opposite of the Presidents action, and that will have to be all illegal children get automatic citizenship. THAT will go over like a fart in church.
    Arizona, Texas and many other GOP Governor states are doing border patrols and racial profiling, any reason is good enough to question anyone who looks Mexican. And back you go, deported rather quickly.
    Good luck with your decision Robmey, but the only one most of us want is what President Obama already has said.

    June 21, 2012 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  18. Rudy NYC

    "As I have said many times, it is critical that we redouble our efforts to secure the borders. "
    --------------
    I randomly selected one misrepresented fact out of the menagerie of distortions and un-truths. We have more agents on the borders than at any other time in our history, double what GWB had.

    No mention of "self-deportation" in the speech. No plan for that matter.

    June 21, 2012 12:56 pm at 12:56 pm |
  19. Gotta Be Kiddin

    He won't let the Executive Order stand so if he is elected all those affected by it will have to leave the country. And because of the President's order they will all be identified so it will make it really easy for Romney to get them out of here. Don't trust this man! Besides he'll be running the country just like G.W. was – those strings will be pulled by Rove, Koch Brothers, etc. Regular folks won't mean anything to him.

    OBAMA/BIDEN 2012

    June 21, 2012 12:58 pm at 12:58 pm |
  20. Myviewis

    Romney's immigration is way to serious for Latinos. Foreigners get to know each others thinking and I myself am an ex-foreigner, US Citizen. I am telling you, Americans do not understand Latinos. Latinos only care to stay, forget about immigration laws, becoming part of the american way, part of our communities, share our values, speak our language, learn our history and even denouce their country for the US. Forget it guys. Latinos would like the US to assimilate to their countries, their ways, laws, language, etc...It can't even be about education since the US is, I believe, #37 in the world, we have bad education.

    June 21, 2012 01:00 pm at 1:00 pm |
  21. EX Ruplican

    Romney is the biggest liar I hope the tea party goes against him with his policy. President Obama will get my
    vote because Romney is the biggest liar. He would say anything to get votes then do the opposite.

    June 21, 2012 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  22. Tony

    Wow. Etch-a-sketch was soooo apt. Amazing.

    June 21, 2012 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  23. Sandy

    Cue in the commercials showing Romney supporting self-deportation and then showing what he says now. Should be funny.

    June 21, 2012 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  24. Milton K. Wiah

    Let me see what Mitt will say in the debate because I am sure these questions will be asked. From his position on
    immigration during the primary, campaign bus and during the debate.
    PRIMARY– I WILL VETO THE DREAM ACT
    CAMPAIGN–I WILL FIND A LONG TIME SOLUTION
    DEBATE-–??????????
    Mitt the flip flopper

    June 21, 2012 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  25. Jules

    Ah yes, he keeps his word. Not! He says what is expedient at the moment. Let's see what he is telling his base about immigration reform on the QT.

    June 21, 2012 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
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