Peach Pundit Forum: What Immigration Reform Should Look Like

Many of us within and outside the GOP  have not given up on the idea of immigration reform.  Immigration remains a serious problem, yet most of the people who dominate this discussion in national and local political circles actively thwart serious discussion about serious solutions.  I discussed some options here recently, and that online entry has led to quite a few interesting discussions off line.  As such, we’re going to try something different.

This Wednesday, July 9th, we do something we’ve never done here at Peach Pundit.  We’re going to get out from behind the keyboard and hold one of our discussions live, in person, for any interested party to come and watch.

I’ll be hosting this discussion with a cross section of the community to discuss current problems, opportunities for solutions, how current messaging on the issue is hurting the GOP politically, and other related topics.  Those participating on this panel include:

Jorge Fernandez, VP Global Commerce, Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce

Maria Cortes, Certified Court Interpreter for the Doraville Municipal Court

Elaine Boyer, DeKalb County Commissioner, and

Will Kremer, Chairman, Georgia Association of College Republicans

The event will be held in the auditorium of the Gwinnett County Justice and Administration Center at 7pm this Wednesday evening. 75 Langley Drive, Lawerenceville GA 30046.   We’re working on putting together a Peach Pundit road show at a nearby restaurant afterwards.

We look forward to having this discussion.  We’re not going to pretend to have all the solutions, but we want to begin to assert that there are those among us that understand we have to have one, and that process begins next week.


  1. newby says:

    There can be no real discussion until the borders are protected and the law enforced. The “discussion” and the promise of a path to citizenship is what has led to the current crisis on the border. Now we are faced with thousands that we as taxpayers will have to feed, house, and provide medical care for. Discuss away but until your first move is to demand border security NOW it is an exercise in futility. No amnesty!

    • John Konop says:

      ……….There can be no real discussion until the borders are protected and the law enforced. ……

      Nothing is a 100 percent….The truth is enforcement is up and illegal immigration is down. We need to figure out a workable solution…..fostering the best and brightest first, as well needs of our country.

      1) We need to make sure all immigrants pay taxes, insurance….we cannot be a landing ground for welfare…

      2) We must have flexibility for college graduates and people who serve in the military….

      3) We need to set up a probation period for people who have lived here in the past for a certain period of time….And this must be tied to making wages above the poverty line for a period of time before granting citizenship.

      4) We must set up a system for migrant workers getting temporary visa in a timely manner…No child labor…….and no benefits for non working migrant workers families….and wages above the poverty line…..

      Just a start…

      • NancyJasper1 says:

        I live in NW GA in Jasper; I think discussions like this are great if people really want to understand that ILLEGAL ALIEN is not a slur, it is what it is. If I break the law, the laws are enforced against me. The entitlement mentality that assumes that one group (using children as pawns) can be excused for not living under the freedoms that America offers because they don’t have what America has need to talk to the people who are doing it the right way and aren’t being rewarded for abiding by the laws/ They will be asked to “uphold the laws of the U.S. of America, so help me GOD”. How can you do that if you break the law to start with? Also, metro Atlanta isn’t the only place that needs to have these discussions. The Latino/Hispanic folks that are my neighbors are still afraid to step up and participate outside their own communities. You either do or you don’t want to be a part in the “great mixing pot” that is America? What can Elaine Boyer, or any person who has not gone through the system, really know that is pertinent? Career politicians are part of the problem/CITIZENS are the solution. How about some of the people who are naturalized citizen, everyday folks at the chicken processing plant, etc. talk about the real solutions. Legalization doesn’t change the mindset, it soothes the guilt that some people have and makes the politicians look busy!

  2. newby says:

    Enforcement is up? Really? You can say that with the thousands pouring over the border right now? This administration is the only one that has ever fudged enforcement numbers by counting those caught at the border and released at the border, I would not vote for a single one of your suggestions. All are amnesty and rewarding people who broke into this country. Because the House has not passed the President’s Senate Bill which include your suggestions and more he has the audacity to blame the Republicans for the crisis at the Texas border. Seal the border and stop the madness and the cost to Americans who are struggling to feed their own children. Most illegals would qualify for the earned income tax credit. They will never pay a dime of tax but will collect dollars if they are legal. Border enforcement before any discussion.

  3. George Chidi says:

    Yes. We can say enforcement is up with the “thousands” poring over the border.

    Net migration is negative right now to Mexico. It’s rising from central America, but total removals and returns of undocumented immigrants is much, MUCH higher now than in previous administrations — over 2 million in the first six years, at least double the Bush administration’s rate.

    Not that any of that matters to you.

    If you don’t want to have a discussion about the insanity of the legal immigration process before achieving your impossible standard of border enforcement, we won’t. We’ll go around you.

  4. newby says:

    George, please be sure to go around my tax dollars to support the cost. Thank you very much. FYI you can’t just talk about enforcement on part of the border even IF your statement about negative numbers were true. Our border guards have become baby sitters and smugglers reign on the border. They are now changing diapers and delivering kids to illegal parents. Something wrong with that picture. The reason we have a standing army is to protect the borders and American citizens. Obama seems to have forgotten what we pay taxes for.

    • George Chidi says:

      I say this with less gentleness than is probably warranted: your tax dollars support lots of things you don’t like, and lots of things I don’t like. This is going to be one of them. If you’re not going to contribute to the negotiations necessary in a pluralistic republic to solve this problem, then this is simply a question of political power. And a majority of voters want this fixed.

      You can mitigate your political losses with some conversation and negotiation … or you can just lose.

      • Harry says:

        That works both ways, George. Coming up to the midterms it seems your side is holding a pretty weak deck.

  5. Hardly says:

    Just by reading your panelists’ names I can easily deduce that TWO will have pro-amnesty views and ONE will be a lifelong premature ejaculation sufferer.

  6. newby says:

    George, you must have missed seeing that town hall meeting out in California. The people are standing up and I think your side is losing ground. We don’t want to foot the bill for illegal immigration. Legal immigration is a different discussion. No amnesty and seal the border NOW!

  7. gcp says:

    Strange how the Obama administration can fund a continuing military operation in Afghanistan, fund a new Iraq mission and previously fund a military operation in Libya but just can ‘t find suffcient manpower to stop illegal immigration at the border. Very strange.

  8. gcp says:

    Strange how the Obama administration can fund a continuing military operation in Afghanistan, fund a new Iraq mission and previously fund a military operation in Libya but just can’t seem to get sufficient manpower to stop illegal immigration at the border. Very strange.

  9. saltycracker says:

    We have blown way past easy solutions 1.1. The compliant, educated, skilled immigrants have been successfully limited. The unskilled, uneducated, illegal immigrants find poor jobs rejected by the rising hoards of Americans on unemployment, Medicare, food stamps, disability. Their numbers far exceed opportunities here and they are taking to scamming the system, too. The Feds say they are discouraging them but the numbers are overwhelming and enforcement selective.

    Not the top unintended consequence but one to consider is what health concerns are there for the 80,000 illegal children just this year and US citizens that might not be resistant to the strains they might carry. Screening ?

    Hispanics are here and the exploitation by both political parties, jobs with no employer accountability and a public social system that enables the able and is forgiving to looters can not stand. We can’t afford to fail immigration 4.0.

  10. Dr. Monica Henson says:

    I am looking forward to this event and learning more. Thanks for organizing it. As an educator, I’ve dealt with the issue of undocumented children (not just immigrants, but homeless, including Hurricane Katrina refugees).

  11. Dave Bearse says:

    From the linked to post:
    “Fully three quarters of Tea Party Republicans, Conservatives, and white evangelicals support some kind of legalization of those here illegally, with only twenty five percent of “the base” favoring deportation.”

    Those numbers indicate immigration reform is controlled by a fraction of the House. There ought to be photos of McConnell and Boehner next ot the word “spineless” in the dictionary.

    “Amnesty…once invoked, becomes toxic to rational debate.”

    Only if you’re in the bubble. Meanwhile the rest of us will hope for the best as concerns Obama Executive Orders.

    No doubt the candidate you’ll vote for Senate will be a force for immigration reform, just like he’ll support increasing federal transportation funding.

  12. Brian Sebastian says:

    For what it’s worth, the recent poll which somehow concluded that more than 70% of both tea party Republicans and non-tea-party Republicans want Congress to pass some type of immigration reform this year was conducted in May and funded by a coalition of three national political organizations.

    The following month, a Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll painted quite a different picture of the electorate. The poll found that 68 percent of tea party supporters said immigration hurts the US and that 47 percent of non-tea-party Republicans said immigration hurts the US. Here’s a link to that June ’14 WJS/NBC News poll:

    • Michael Silver says:

      The difference in the polls is the use of the term: Immigration Reform. Immigration Reform means vastly different things to people. To the Chamber of Commerce, it means an unlimited supply of inexpensive third-world labor to fatten their wallets. To Latino activists and Democrat political leaders, it means Amnesty and political power to dilute American voters. To people who look at the 92 million AMERICANS without a job and get upset, it means ending immigration and deporting the Illegal ALIENS and their children.

      When the pollsters start asking about specific actions, you’ll see why Rep. Cantor lost. The rich and poor know that immigration harms their and our nation’s economic prospects.

      • John Konop says:

        I agree immigration cannot be a tool to drive down wages….that is why we need real reform that makes sure we are not a welfare dumping ground that destroys the midde class wages…,on the other hand if done right immigration can be a positive….like must business plans it is all how it is implemented….

        • Harry says:

          Folks in the Czech Republic who have been victimized by loss of jobs to China, believe the US is well positioned to become a Chinese-style low wage country. If true, then we may actually need the entry of all those Mexicans and Central Americans who are at least stable workers and know how to follow orders.

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