Republican Candidates’ Positions on the Border

It is interesting and revealing to compare each of the candidates’ positions on the “Border.” It is easily determined which candidates have actually given serious thought to the issue as opposed to a “sound bite.”

The candidates that gave serious thought to their positions have some similarities: they are Commissioned Officers in the Reserve (one in the Army, one in the Air Force); both are combat veterans; both are college graduates; and both have traveled abroad outside of the military.

Their positions, as posted on their websites, on the Border follow. 

Jonathan Paton’s website – “Jonathan Paton endorsed an 18-point border security plan released today by the Arizona Cattle Growers’ Association, stressing the urgent need for immediate action to end lawlessness along the border.

And Paton – who attended the press conference in Phoenix today where the plan was released – called on Gabrielle Giffords to finally listen to her constituents and adopt the group’s recommendations.

Paton also continued his call for U.S. troops to be sent to the border – No. 2 on the “Restore Our Border Security Plan” – as a mechanism to add security and reduce violence immediately.

“I applaud the cattle growers’ multifaceted plan to bring security immediately and will continue to work to bring action to this national security threat,” Paton said. “This is not a new problem. Sadly, the ranchers and citizens living along the border know that better than anyone. Still, our politicians have continuously ignored the violence and mayhem in Southern Arizona. Gabrielle Giffords has dithered on this issue and ignored the people in her own district for too long. She’s talked tough in TV ads here at home, but gone to Washington and voted to weaken our security. That’s unacceptable.”

Many of the provisions in the plan are things that Jonathan has long supported, both as a state lawmaker and a candidate for Congress. Those include: sending troops to the border, making it a felony to enter the country illegally, writing the state’s human smuggling law and increasing funding to catch and prosecute those who break our immigration laws. Paton also opposes amnesty or a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants.

Giffords, however, has said one thing in Arizona – but done another in Washington.

She was a co-sponsor of the STRIVE ACT, which provided a path to citizenship for illegal aliens. The bill also included the DREAM ACT, which would provide education benefits for illegal aliens as well as permanent residency. (HR 1645, 2007)

And she voted against funding the construction of at least two layers of reinforced fencing, and the installation of additional physical barriers, roads, lighting and cameras along the border (RC 490, HR 2638, 6/15/2007).

“We need real action, not just election year rhetoric,” Paton said. “I’m confident that enacting this plan by the cattle growers will finally bring us closer to securing our border and reducing the violence that is plaguing our community.”

  The 18-point plan:

1.  The judicial and law enforcement systems, which handle prosecution of these criminal activities, shall recognize and apply an enforcement mechanism that provides for the prosecution of illegally crossing into the U.S. over the Border, for the first time, as a felony barring any person from ever working or receiving residency visa status in the U.S.  No exceptions.

2.  Immediately deploy operational units of the U.S. Military to the Arizona/Mexico Border. Station overwhelming Border Patrol/Military blocking force denying illegal entry at the Border. 

 3.  Establish permanent Forward Operating Bases (FOB) immediately adjacent to the U.S. border with Mexico.  (Suggesting at least one FOB every 12 miles)  

 4.  Overhaul and add teeth to the “Pursuit and Apprehension” policies for Law Enforcement to assure deterrence and protect U.S. residents and State authorities from potential harm.  In the first instance, authorize the U.S. Military, Border Patrol, State and Federal Law Enforcement Agencies to use these beefed up policies to enforce existing laws.

 5.  Authorize the use of force in the interdiction of vehicles and aircraft illegally crossing the U.S. Mexico Border. Empower the Local Law Enforcement leaders to adjust policies to meet conditions on the ground and not rely only upon inflexible procedures preventing Border Security.

 6.  Enforce all existing immigration laws without exception.  Streamline and expedite deportation of illegal aliens.

 7.  Add 3,000+ Arizona BP field agents by 2011.  Assure additional incremental hardware is part of Field Agent deployment.

 8.  Increase County Law Enforcement permanent “Stonegarden Funding” for additional deputies and fully equipped 4 x 4 patrol vehicles.

 9.  Expedite 2010 deployment of new generation digital radio technology to Arizona and New Mexico Border Patrol.

10.  Substantially increase Border Patrol Recon 3, MSS/Radar and FLIR mobile surveillance units and operators.  Assure additional incremental agents are deployed to operate this hardware and technology.

11.  Replace outdated Border Patrol Air & Marine Rotorcraft air support with contemporary rotorcraft and small single engine fixed wing.  Deploy air support on/near the U.S. Border.

12.  Establish mandatory Cellular coverage for remote non-service areas.

13.  Equip Border Patrol and County Law Enforcement with GMRS “Rhino” GPS radios allowing homeowners and ranchers to communicate in remote areas.

14.  Establish “No Seam”  Wilcox/Douglas, Arizona and Lordsburg New Mexico Border Policy Corridor into its own Border Patrol Sector.

15.  Increase and fund additional Arizona Horse Patrol Units.

 16.  Streamline federal claims process for recovering damages caused by illegal alien burglaries, vandalism and ranch infrastructure/livestock losses to include feed stock losses on both private & public lands (fires).

 17.  Adequately fund State and Federal Attorneys’ Offices to assure timely prosecutions of Border related offences.  Stiffen 9th Circuit Appeals Court immigration and narcotics prosecutorial policies.

 18.  Measure Border Security success on the community via a monthly disclosure of all crimes, by title and code, committed and suspected to be committed by illegal alien activities which have conducted burglaries, home invasions, and ranching infrastructure/livestock losses. Establish operational transparency for Arizona residents of illegal alien and smuggling activity in their respective Border Patrol Sector and Communities to include County law Enforcement statistics and incidents.”

 Brian Miller’s website – “We Arizonans, of all backgrounds, live with the problems of a porous border every day. Many of us have been the victims of violent crime, theft, and home invasions as a direct result of this border problem. We know that more than 90% of people who come to our great nation do so to make their lives better, but that does not excuse us for not addressing this serious problem.

 We Americans have a right and responsibility to know and decide who enters our homeland, and I believe a robust immigration policy will aid in the future health and success of America. To do this, the federal government must fulfill its responsibility to secure our international borders and maintain operational control.

 Our current situation has encouraged a permanent underclass without equal access to the law. This is dangerous to everyone and promotes continued illegal behavior and increased resentment among citizens, legal non-citizens, and those here illegally. Though it is unlikely we will ever eliminate illegal crossings without eliminating the moral hazards created by our welfare state, we must work toward realistic solutions. Only with a multi-faceted approach will we address the underlying economic dynamics that drive this issue.

We cannot secure our borders until we minimize the illegal immigration problem. To do that, Congress should:

 1.  Demand the enforcement of existing laws to the maximum extent possible

2.  Deny federal welfare for those here illegally, to sanctuary cities, and to nations whose citizens come here illegally

3.  Deny “anchor-baby” and chain migration by clarifying the 14th amendment

4.  Deny amnesty

5.  Create a robust, market-based, legal immigration system

6.  Create an accountable, employer-based, temporary worker program

 With the illegal immigration problem in hand, the Border Patrol and our court system then have a manageable problem of thousands or hundreds of incursions, not millions. To solve the remaining problem, the federal government should:

1.  Provide for strategically placed walls and barriers

2.  Provide all required resources to the Border Patrol and local law enforcement

3.  Provide for ground-based sensors and airborne assets”

 Andy Goss’ website – “We must insist our laws are enforced regarding our borders. People who are here illegally should not be rewarded with any sort of amnesty or benefits or a job. When caught, they should be returned to their country of origin. Those companies that hire illegal aliens should be punished and punished severely. This will result in attrition. If there are no jobs available for the illegals, they will leave on their own. Sanctuary cities like San Francisco and others should lose ALL federal funding. The E-Verify system should be law.”

The problem with our porous southern border is not only Mexico. Terrorists can and have crossed our southern border and this presents a clear danger and unacceptable national security risk. The risks to Americans from drug cartels, grand theft auto, gang violence, identity theft and terrorism should not be tolerated nor should the drain on our nation’s welfare system and hospitals.”

 Jesse Kelly’s website – “Our borders must be secured and America needs an increased presence along our borders in order to halt drug trafficking and gang violence. I support a double fence along the border, like the one in San Diego.”

 You can draw your own conclusion.


  1. Richard, you left out the part about Paton supporter and pal Jeff Flake also supporting the STRIVE ACT.

  2. kralmajales says

    The DREAM act is co-sponsored by a host of Republicans. It is among the most humane bills one can imagine. If a student was brought here by their parents illegally when young or a baby, has been here more than 5 years…then yes…they can come to college at normal tuition rates. And note that they had been in our schools as well.

    What it sounds like you all favor is taking kids…punishing them for life…for the sins of their parents.

    Just like you. Just like you.

  3. kralmajales says

    So I would love to see you all just go down to our school districts, round up undocumented kids brought here by their parents, put them on a plane, and deport them…you heartless biggots.

  4. kralmajales says

    I’d like to know why you wrote this: “The bill also included the DREAM ACT, which would provide education benefits for illegal aliens as well as permanent residency. (HR 1645, 2007)” It is completely misleading.

    And I would like to know if Jonathan Paton supports it and if not I would like to know why. Im going to his next forum and Im going to tell him what the bill actually says and ask him.

  5. kralmajales says

    ” Immediately deploy operational units of the U.S. Military to the Arizona/Mexico Border. Station overwhelming Border Patrol/Military blocking force denying illegal entry at the Border.”

    What an utterly stupid piece of garbage rhetoric. Are we going to deploy our soldiers who have had 3-4 tours in Iraq or those in Afganistan? We are already trying to hire 5000 new border patrol agents…and have tried for years. Even in this economy, they are not making their goals. So I guess maybe we need a draft to find these soldiers?

  6. Stephen Kohut says


    If the children are here illegally, then I would deport them and their criminal alien parents in a heartbeat. They have no right to be here. If the child is a US citizen and their parents are climinal aliens, then it is the parent’s choice if they take their child with them or not when they are deported. Choices, like illegal immigration, come with consequences. If you do not like the consequence then do not make that choice. If you make the choice then don’t complain about the logical consequence. Free will comes with accoutability and responsibility for exercising it.

    H2382, collection of data on illegal alien children in school, should be amended to require the verification of legal residency of the adult parent or guardian enrolling the child in school. That way we avoid a conflict with the SCOTUS decision on providing education to children regardless of immigration status, determine if the adult enrolling the child has the legal right to be here and we can educate the child until we can deport their criminal alien parent/guardian.

  7. kralmajales says

    Unbelievable…so you are saying if parents brought their baby here illegally, they group up here, attend our schools, and function as normal Americans, that you would uproot them all…including the child…and deport them?

    I am stunned at how cruel and inhumane some of you are.

    Thank your lucky…and I mean LUCKY stars that your momma happened to drop you out here on American soil. Because what I see of some of these young people hiding and trying to succeed….I would take 10 of them for every one of you.

  8. Stephen Kohut says

    Every one of them, without a doubt. “Normal Americans” are not criminal aliens here illegally. That spin does not sell. Neither does the “cruel and inhumane” crap. The adults, the parents, made their choice to break our laws and come here illegally. You do the crime you elect the consequence that comes with it.

    All four of my grandparents, like may other people looking to immigrate to the US, waited their time to immigrate here legally. My grandfathers came first and had to leave their wives behind until they could legally immigrate 1-2 years later. It was not easy but they followed all the rules. They applied for citizenship. My family and many other families of people that immigrated legally know what it took for our greatgrandparents, grandparents or parents to immigrate legally to the US. I have no sympathy for people who engage in criminal activity because they don’t like the law or think the law should not apply to them and then wanted to profit from their criminal activity and avoid the penalities for their offense.

    I could care less how many people like me or criminal aliens you prefer to have around you. I can see where the criminal aliens would want to have an enabler like you at their side rather than a citizen that believes in the rule of law.

    I can’t wait for S1070 to clear the Senate and get signed into law. Bye-bye sanctuary cities. I’m going to push for H2382 to be amended as I indicate above.

    Maybe we should just clone how Mexico handles illegal immigrants where when you are found and identified as illegal you are immediately deported. No ifs, ands, buts or excuses. Don’t care what you own. Don’t care if you have any family members, kids or anyone else left behind in the lurch. Bye-bye. Would you prefer we follow Mexico’s lead of deportation without due process of law?

  9. kralmajales Says:
    April 14th, 2010 at 11:12 am e
    I’d like to know why you wrote this: “The bill also included the DREAM ACT, which would provide education benefits for illegal aliens as well as permanent residency. (HR 1645, 2007)” It is completely misleading.

    kralmajales, take a deep breath, calm down, go back and read the blog again. I did not write, one of the candidates did.

    By the way, calling others bigots and inhumane doesn’t help your credibility. Stick to the facts. You can express your opinion without vitriol.

    Of the seven responses you provided five. You’ve got to get a life!

  10. kralmajales Says:
    April 14th, 2010 at 11:07 am

    What it sounds like you all favor is taking kids…punishing them for life…for the sins of their parents.

    How come you ignore the RESPONSIBILITY of the KNOWINGLY illegal PARENTS for putting their kids in this uncomfortable and fundamentally UNTENABLE situation?

    They are adults, and they make decisions, JUST LIKE EVERYONE ELSE. They are making a GAMBLE, a BET, using their CHILDREN.

    And WHO are you sniffing about instead? Other parents who wouldn’t USE their kids as LEVERAGE in that manner? This is a deliberate tactic to shift the blame from those responsible to an innocent party, using emotional waaah waaah “for the kids” ploy. IF the KIDS were so important to you, how come you are NOT counseling people to consider the horrible position they will put their own children in if they CHOSE to go the ILLEGAL route instead of the LEGAL entry?

    The illegals are punishing their own kids, nobody else.

  11. AS for the article, thanks to RDBRinkley for giving us a concrete idea of the positions and the proposals. Very helpful.

  12. If our current laws, lackluster enforcement and apologists for illegals didn’t create these tempting gambling situations, we wouldn’t be seeing these risky manuverings using “anchor babies,” “long term residency” and “meany” excuses.

  13. …………………
    “and function as normal Americans, that you would uproot them all…including the child…and deport them?

    I am stunned at how cruel and inhumane some of you are.

    “normal Americans” OBEY THE LAW.

    That’s NORMAL in America, less so in other countries, epecially those that rank as “most corrupt” internationally.

    I’s simple to become an American : OBEY THE LAW.

    Cruel and inhumane? If it was so, so many people wouldn’t be trying to get in … unlike the Soviet Union which built a wall to keep people from fleeing the “workers’ paradise” and Cuba which chases boats and shoots down rescue airplanes to punish Cubans who want to quit the island “paradise,” the United States is RELUCTANTLY forced to secure its borders better due to control who comes IN, to limit entry to LEGAL immigrants and workers, since so many people now ABUSE the welcome and the sovereignty of the USA.

  14. I think this post is a great reference and agree that it is very easy for a candidate to issue talking points hoping that voters fill in the blanks favorably for them.

    It’s very important to honor veteran’s for their service, but being a veteran does not earn one unmitigated validation at election time. As we’ve seen in the case of McCain, veteran status does not equate to strength of character or moral constancy.

  15. charming nancy says


    Your candidate was a day late. Isn’t it amazing how all three of the wannabe candidates are behind the power curve. Experience does play a part when running for any office, but most especially for a Federal office. It’s nice to say that someone entered the race early, but that is definitely not a criteria for victory. It will be interesting to see how this plays out as sooner or later it will come down to character, integrity, being in the arena–what’s known in the business world as the discrimination factor.

    I also believe that it is time to put to rest the military service. I admire them all for serving, but they all did–I’ve never heard how many missions Mr. Miller flew in Afghanistan, how many men Mr. Kelly led into combat? Mr. Paton and Mr. Goss have pretty much said they served in Iraq. So unless Mr. Miller and Mr. Kelly want to disclose the numbers in the above mentioned activities, I believe it is time to put them to rest.

    Mr. Paton is the one under fire from the other candidates, because he is the only one who has done anything in the arena of politics. He has put himself in a position to be challanged, because that is the type of man he is. He is a true candidate FOR the people.

  16. azsnowbird says

    A day late? Kelly has owned Paton at every debate on the border issues and a wordy press release by Paton doesn’t change that. Kelly is the only candidate committed to building the double-layer fence. Further, Paton has snuggled up to all the pro-amnesty guys. If he does win, these are the guys he is going to owe favors to. That fact can’t be ignored.

    Paton is under fire from the other candidates and true conservatives because he is a moderate and a RINO.

  17. charming nancy says

    Mr. Kelly is committed to building a fence. How long will it take? How much will it cost? Who will build it? Mr. Kelly insists that he will build it if elected–seems like that will take a very long time.

    Also on Mr. Kelly’s facebook page for months he posted (not verbatim) today is Sunday, family day and God’s day. However, have noticed recently he has had meet and greets (fundraisers) on Sunday. Seems he does not have the strength of character to stand by his ‘family values’. What would he do if elected to Congress and he was pressured?

    Which pro-amnesty guys is Mr. Paton ‘snuggling up’ to. Think you should name the names. Not just make accusations.

  18. Many of you may remember that Paton opposed Prop. 200 back in 2004.

  19. I’m glad snowbird probably can’t vote here…

    Go ask Cathi Herrod of Center for Arizona Policy about what a RINO/moderate Jonathan Paton is. Go ask Joe Arpaio(I don’t care who he’s endorsed)

    The facts are that Paton has done more for children, families and social conservatives than almost any other legislator from southern arizona.

    He has written and sponsored and co-sponsored many of the laws which give Arpaio the legal ability to do the things he does.

    Jesse Kelly employs an ex-Kolbe staffer as his campaign manager, he tried to get endorsements from John McCain and Jeff Flake last year, he took the first max campaign contribution from Jim Click…

    Talk about your moderate/Rino/carpet-bagger…

  20. Think folks should take a look at what happened in Phoenix and Tucson today-the raiding of smuggler’s vehicles, etc. Then thank Jonathan Paton and his bill that it could happen.

    It’s pretty sad that some of the other candidates have to take offense at Jonathan’s record in the Arizona Legislature. It is so shallow as none of them have anything to look at as to their stance on anything-except what they are saying now. I believe if one wants to be an informed, aware voter, one must look at the accomplishments of each individual, the expeience of each individual – become educated. One of the other candidates would not beat Gabby Giffords, she is experienced and would eat them for lunch.

  21. ……………..
    “However, have noticed recently he has had meet and greets (fundraisers) on Sunday. Seems he does not have the strength of character to stand by his ‘family values’

    Good thing God is so much more flexible and pragmatic than people. He said, “Work 6 days and rest the seventh.”

    He didn’t say it HAD to be “Sunday.” He left it OPEN.

  22. charming nancy says

    I don’t care what day it is either. Mr. Kelly is the one who posted on his facebook page re time with his family and God’s day being Sunday–I didn’t make it up. Guess the majority who believe that Sunday is the day of rest have it all wrong.

  23. charming nancy says

    Guess Mr. Kelly reads the Sonoran Alliance or has someone do it for him–today he spent the morning with his family–what a hypocrite. He’s piling mistake on top of mistake. His attacks against Jonathan Paton will start to backfire very soon. People are asking questions and getting the straight answers. Like Senator Paton did not endorse Senator McCain in this election. What is being used is an endorsement from almost a year ago when Senator McCain went to the State Legislature and requested an endorsement for some other business. There were quite a few legislators who signed the same thing.

    Let’s see–he got the bill passed regarding human smuggling. One of his last acts as a State Senator was to introduce SB 1264 (transparency legislation). You can look up all the bills he sponsored or cosponsored on I believe it is important to be a well informed voter.

    As for the ‘Napolitano’ budget, tort reform, just give Senator Paton a call and he will be more than happy to answer your questions.

    Certainly, Mr. Kelly is not naive(or maybe he is) enough to think that Senator Paton entered this race not knowing that his record would be challenged and knew that he could stand behind all his votes.

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