Friday, May 04, 2007

That's it, I'm endorsing Bill Richardson for President

I've been leaning toward endorsing Bill Richardson for President for a couple of months now, and his latest remarks on immigration just cinched the deal. Here's a transcript of an older immigration speech from his governor's office that reports the same information with a bit more detail: Reform Speech from Bill Richardson

Here are the high points:

1. Secure the Border--Richardson supports doubling the number of border patrol agents, adding high tech security devices, and tearing down fences that don't work and send the wrong message.
2. Penalize Employers--He also supports raising the minimum wage and fining businesses that hire illegals.
3. Amnesty--He doesn't call it that, but admits that the term will be used against him. It's alot more complicated than that.
4. Work with the Mexican Government--Richardson realizes that there will always be a weak link in the chain of immigration reform unless the border is secured from both directions. He's already met with President Calderon as New Mexico governor.
5. Increase the number of Legal Immigrants--Just to accommodate the family members of current illegals who will become permanent legal residents, Richardson supports doubling the number of available family visas.

To me, these ideas are common sense. He lays them out articulately and with the wisdom afforded a public servant with his experience. I had not sought to endorse a candidate this early, but felt that it was necessary before Hillary sucked all of the oxygen out of the room. More on that later.

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