November 11, 2015
International Business Times -- November 10, 2015
Immigration was, as always, a divisive topic during Tuesday night's Republican primary debate. But this time around, it seemed to divide the candidates themselves. Two categories emerged: those who proposed mass deportation and those who advocated for a path to citizenship.
Front-runner Donald Trump got the discussion started when he responded to a question about a federal appeals court's Monday decision to uphold an injunction blocking President Barack Obama's 2014 executive order that would give temporary legal status to about 5 million undocumented immigrants living in the United States. Trump said he was happy because immigration was hurting the nation economically and went on to repeat his proposal of building a wall along the border of Mexico.
"You will have to send people out. We're a country of laws. We either have a country or we don’t have a country," he said, referencing former President Dwight Eisenhower's "Operation Wetback," which deported 1.3 million Mexicans in the 1950s. "They will have to go out and hopefully they get back, but we have no choice."
Texas Sen. Ted Cruz seemed to take Trump's side, though he briefly summarized his personal history with the issue. His father was an immigrant from Cuba, but Cruz said the U.S. needed to "embrace legal immigration while believing in the rule of law."
"If Republicans join Democrats as the party of amnesty, we will lose," he added. "Every sovereign nation secures its borders, and it is not compassionate to say we're not going to enforce the laws and we're going to drive down the wages for millions of hard-working men and women. That is abandoning the working men and women."