Kay Hagan on Immigration
Democratic Jr Senator; previously member of State Senate
On that count, Hagan agreed, saying the president "should not take" action to ease deportations. But she also defended her vote in favor of the comprehensive immigration bill that passed the Senate last June, noting its variety of Republican co-sponsors and saying it would throw considerably more resources at border security. "Inaction is not an option," she said. "Speaker Tillis has no plan to solve our immigration system."
Hagan erred in faulting that program as an �unfunded federal mandate.� Dole corrected: It�s neither mandatory nor unfunded. But she went on to accuse Hagan, falsely, of voting in the legislature to make it easier for illegal immigrants to get driver�s licenses. Several times, Democrats killed measures to make it tougher before eventually approving stronger requirements, but Hagan never eased restrictions.
Dole insisted Hagan did vote on one occasion to make it easier for illegal immigrants to obtain a North Carolina driver�s license, citing the 2001 state appropriations act.
Hagan responded that that �measure was attached to the 2001 state budget bill and did not require people to prove that they were in the country legally, but did require people to show proof of residency and taxpayer identification. Hagan voted for the budget.�
But Hagan suggested that Dole did not have much to boast about. �This is another example of where Washington is broken,� Hagan said. �Senator Dole has been in Washington for over 40 years. This problem has been there for a very long time. Since the Bush administration began, we currently have another five million illegal immigrants in this country.�
Hagan said she supported increased border security and opposed amnesty. But she said immigration was really a federal problem, rather than a state one and dismissed the sheriffs� program as �patchwork� program and an unfunded federal mandate on the states.
Dole�s advertisement comes one day after Hagan met with six sheriffs to discuss immigration. Hagan said she supports the idea of county-federal partnerships that put illegal immigrants who commit crimes on the path to deportation. But unlike other candidates for top statewide office, including Dole, Hagan told a group of sheriffs that she has some major concerns about how officials are proceeding with the program. �The citizens of North Carolina pay federal taxes,� Hagan told a half-dozen sheriffs during a round-table in Raleigh. �Immigration is certainly a federal issue, and the federal government cannot be throwing another unfunded federal mandate down on us at the state level.�
Dole has been a leading advocate for the program.
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