On Tuesday Seventh District Congressional candidates, Dave Brat of the TeaParty and Democrat Jack Trammell, discussed their views on immigration during a Virginia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce meeting at the offices of Challa Law Firm, reports The Richmond Times-Dispatch.
The candidates, both professors at Randolph-Macon College, clarified their positions on issues related to immigration ranging from expanding visa opportunities, discouraging illegal immigration at our borders, and how to deal with the almost 11 million undocumented immigrants already living in the country.
Dave Brat, who unseated former House Majority Leader Eric Cantor in June, was able to do so partly because of his stance on the immigration issue. Brat was able to gain votes because of his opposition to proposals by Congress that offered a path to citizenship for immigrants who were in the country illegally.
His opening statements to the Virginia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce focused on his economic initiatives for a free market and an end to the regulation that currently has the economy at a standstill. He also spoke of a need for more integration of science, technology, engineering and mathematics cirriculum to promote skill development among students.
When Chamber President Michel Zajur asked about current immigration proposals, Brat said that the problem needs to be managed by securing the border and enforcing the “rule of law” that is currently in place to handle immigrants, both legal and illegal. “I have never said that I’m against legal immigration,” said Brat who later added “nations that function under the rule of law do well.”
After Brat’s departure, Trammell addressed the group. He held the current Congress responsible for the failing to reach a compromise on the issue. Trammell added that he supports a comprehensive immigration reform, the DREAM Act, and a “clear path to citizenship” for immigrants. While Trammell does support securing our borders, he thinks that it should be “a rational policy that is enforceable.”
Trammell also added that immigrants should be welcomed as they are people who are here to “be part of the solution, not part of the problem,” but America should work to deport criminals who are here illegally.