Beto O’Rourke is the second major Democratic candidate to come up with a full immigration plan, and it’s a doozy with three major points of actions and solutions.
On Wednesday, O’Rourke revealed that his immigration plan if he were to be elected president would be a path to citizenship for 11 million people in the country illegally.
He would also deploy thousands of immigration lawyers to the southern border to help with asylum cases and budget $5 billion to combat violence and poverty in Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras, which is what’s driving so many people to the border in the first place.
According to the Associated Press, O’Rourke’s plan is to use executive orders so that only people who have criminal records will be detained for crossing the border illegally.
Under O’Rourke’s expansive plan would also:
- End family separation at the border
- Remove federal immigration courts from their current jurisdiction under the Justice Department
- Stop all funding for private, for-profit prison operators
- Send 2,000 lawyers to the border to help those immigrants seeking asylum from violence and extreme poverty
To legalize the 11 million people, O’Rourke said he would work with Congress to finish it in the first 100 days as president. He would also fast-track DACA recipients into citizenship, also known as “Dreamers.”
According to O’Rourke, who served three terms in Congress representing El Paso across the Rio Grande from Ciudad Juárez, El Paso is among the safest cities per capita in the nation “not because of walls but in spite of walls” along the border.
The only other Democratic candidate to offer a full immigration plan former Obama administration housing chief Julián Castro, who called in April for completely ending criminalization of illegal border crossings.