The Graves Position

ENFORCEMENT ONLY. Graves has been a strong proponent of enforcement-only policies since winning election in 2000. [Graves Press Release, 5/17/07] Homeland security and immigration are the two main issues of the Graves campaign. He has called for a halt in all immigration until non-citizens already here are “accounted for.” Graves opposes President Bush’s plan to give undocumented immigrants “guest worker” status. He says: “We’ve got a sick immigration policy. We need a much more stringent policy. We have to keep illegals out, and we have to do a better job in terms of legal immigration by getting rid of many of the fast-track programs. They should have been done away with right after 9/11.” [CQ Member Profile, 4/1/07]

Graves supports Rep. Heath Shuler’s (D-NC) Secure America through Verification and Enforcement Act, and believes the legislation will help forestall the wave of people coming into the United States illegally. He said Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi opposes the bill because it contains no amnesty component. [St. Joseph News-Press, 5/19/08]

In 2007, Graves wrote an editorial entitled “Enforcement Must Come First, but Amnesty Never as I See it,” that was published in the Kansas City Star. He wrote, “Legalizing 12 million people who have broken the law sends the wrong message. There is a legal and right way to immigrate into this country, but illegal immigrants are here illegally…. We need to think enforcement first. You cannot be serious about protecting the homeland when you don't even control your own border…. I will continue to support whatever it takes to get control of the border.” [Kansas City Star, 6/13/07]