With the Department of Homeland Security reviewing hundreds of thousands of cases of illegal immigrants facing deportation, one has to wonder how exactly Republican presidential candidates feel about the issue of undocumented immigrants, particularly children who were brought to this country.
While Minnesota representative Michele Bachmann supported a DHS policy in 2010 that would bring orphaned Haitian children to the U.S. temporarily after the earthquake that year, she advocates tighter border control and more enforcement of current immigration laws.
Once this is achieved, improvements to the current system can be considered, her congressional Web site says.
Texas governor Rick Perry is for lessening crime along the U.S.-Mexico border. He spoke to the Border Summit in 2001 about the importance of business between Mexico and the state of Texas. He also spoke of Texas' allowing illegal immigrants to attend college at in-state tuition rates.
We must say to every Texas child learning in a Texas classroom, 'we don't care where you come from, but where you are going, and we are going to do everything we can to help you get there.' And that vision must include the children of undocumented workers, he said.
Herman Cain believes that illegal immigration has exacerbated illegal activity, according to his presidential Web site. He advocates tighter border control and law enforcement.
Taking a stand on the issue does not mean one lacks compassion, but instead, that one respects the rule of law and the importance of not becoming a lawless nation, his Web site says.
Ron Paul has a strict stance on illegal immigration. He is against birthright citizenship and wants to quicken the process for those who apply for citizenship legally. He wants to enforce border security, grant no amnesty, and abolish welfare for illegals, according to his presidential Web site.
Jon Hunstman's top priority in terms of illegal immigration is tighter border control.
Jon's first priority, before any immigration reforms are even considered, is to secure the southwest border, once and for all, his presidential Web site says.
Newt Gingrich advocates tighter border control but also finds some aspects of the DREAM Act useful, Politico reported last year when Gingrich spoke at a forum.
We are not going to deport 11 million people, he said, Politico reported. There has to be some zone between deportation and amnesty.
Former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney vetoed a bill while in office that would have given in-state tuition for certain illegal immigrants. Former Republican presidential candidate John McCain criticized Romney's immigration views on a conference call with reporters in 2008.
In the case of Governor Romney, you know, maybe I should wait a couple of weeks and see if it changes, because it's changed in less than a year from his position before, McCain said.