Jim Banks Will Fight to Keep Our Border Secure and Our Homeland Safe.

Jim Banks vows to fight to protect northeast Indiana from harmful immigration proposals if elected to Congress. Lack of action on comprehensive border security endangers our national security and puts all of our families at risk. If elected to serve northeast Indiana in Congress, Jim will:

  • Vote to defeat any immigration legislation that will result in amnesty for illegal aliens
  • Support efforts to enforce existing U.S. immigration laws, including the implementation of the US-VISIT visitor entry program
  • Close borders to illegal aliens and illegal drugs
  • Vote to complete the 700 miles of walls along our border with Mexico
  • Vote to deport criminal illegal aliens
  • Oppose any expansion of guest-worker programs
  • Encourage employers to use rapid-response E-Verify system to check employees SSN to make sure American jobs aren't taken by illegal foreign workers
  • Vote against any federal law that preempts state or local efforts to enforce federal immigration law within own borders
  • Reduce federal funding to states that issue drivers' licenses to illegal aliens, accept foreign-issued documentation as legal identification, give lower in-state tuition to illegal aliens, or adopt "sanctuary city" policies
  • Overturn President Obama's policy allowing Mexican trucks access to U.S. highways without the same health and safety standards we require American truckers to meet
  • Oppose US State Department's agreement with Mexico allowing illegal aliens to count unlawful U.S. work toward qualifying for Social Security benefits
  • Vote to overturn President Clinton's executive Order 13166 which compels recipients of tax dollars to offer services in foreign languages
  • Support legislation requiring that illegal aliens counted in the census not be used for the purposes of apportionment or redistricting
  • Vote to require that all government business must be conducted in English

Immigration issues have been a major source of disagreement in Washington over the last several decades, but Congress needs to make progress toward enacting immigration policy that will secure our borders and discourage illegal activity. What often gets lost in the discussion of immigration policy is that the primary responsibility of the federal government is to protect our country. If elected your Congressman, Jim's first priority will be to defend our nation and our values.

Northeast Indiana has strong cultural identities associated with the nationalities of the people who made significant contributions to our region. From the names of communities to festivals we continue to celebrate, immigrants to our region and their descendants continue to cherish the traditions of their homeland while enjoying the personal liberties our nation extends to all who become citizens.

While much of our region welcomed immigrants from Germany, France and other parts of Western Europe through the early 20th Century, northeast Indiana has welcomed immigrants from many other areas. Most notably our region became a center of Macedonian culture in the United States. More recently we've welcomed immigrants fleeing war and destruction in Ethiopia, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Burma. We should be honored that so many who have sought refuge have found our region a welcoming home away from home.

The American Dream is part of our unique national identity and it is only natural that oppressed people in other nations seeking a better life for them and their family would want to share in that dream. We have built a system of legal immigration procedures for people seeking this dream to follow. It is critical that any immigration policy changes respects those who have followed the law to seek legal entry to our country.

Unfortunately we are facing a world in turmoil, with revolutions and disruptions reaching every corner of the globe. The federal government's first responsibilities are to protect the rights of Americans and defend them against foreign threats. Blanket acceptance of foreign refugees represents a legitimate risk to our country, particularly when we have no systems in place to ensure that people entering the country for a temporary or conditional visit to our nation are prevented from over-staying that visit. Whether entering to visit our attractions or pursue educational opportunities not available in their home country, visitors who overstay their welcome become undocumented immigrants and present a potential security threat. All too often it is through these temporary, non-immigrant visas that those who seek to do harm to our nation.

Jim is no stranger to these challenges. In his first legislative session in the Indiana Senate he coauthored Senate Enrolled Act 590. This 2011 law had a number of provisions to help protect Hoosier jobs from illegal immigrants, including requiring state and local governments to verify the citizenship status of employees as well as any contractors doing work for the government. Some provisions of this legislation were later struck down in federal court, including a provision that would prohibit the use of consular identification cards as a valid form of identification. Between his work on this bill and other immigration legislation, Jim has compiled the strongest record on immigration issues among the candidates running for Indiana's Third Congressional District.

President Obama and many Democrats seek to expand the number of legal immigrants by granting status to illegal immigrant crossings and dramatically increasing the number of people who can legally migrate to the United States. Any massive influx of refugees can't be supported without appropriate support systems in place to screen entrants and ensure they're not coming to execute attacks on our country such as we've seen in Europe.

We still have serious security gaps in our ability to monitor refugees and temporary visitors after they enter the country as well as protect our country against illegal entry. Until those gaps are maintained, Jim believes that changes to our legal immigration policies should be considered dead on our arrival. Our inability to enforce current immigration policy clearly demonstrates that it makes no sense to modify those rules in a manner that makes them more difficult to enforce. Jim believes that the open borders concept is not appropriate when we can't adequately identify who is entering and leaving our country. He feels that given we have the technology and the personnel to staunch the influx of illegal border crossings, implementing these security features must be our national policy priority.

If you feel that our government needs to do a better job protecting our country by enforcing U.S. immigration laws, then join Team Banks and help us send Jim to Washington to bring our voice to the immigration debate.