Immigration Policy Debate Questions




All too often the video questions approved by presidential debate moderators fail to address immigration from the perspective of the American people. Tough immigration topics get ignored and the same tired questions get repeated. The questions in the videos below are presented by the Center for Immigration Studies with the hope that they will raise issues not yet adequately addressed by the 2016 presidential candidates.

As the presidential debates continue, both in the primaries and the general election, the page will be updated with more video questions from citizens. To have your own brief (30 seconds) video question for the candidates be considered for inclusion, send it to [email protected].

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Debate Question: Visa Overstayers


“As a former State Department officer, my job was to review the applications of people who wanted a temporary visa to come to the United States. And the law requires that we refuse visas to people who are likely to overstay. Yet now, 40 to 50 percent of the entire illegal population of the United States is made up of people who came in legally and overstayed their visa. Why would you allow people who abuse the privilege of getting a temporary visa stay permanently?”


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Debate Question: Illegal Alien Criminals


“My son, my only child, Dominic Durden, was killed by an illegal alien. He had been arrested previously for driving under the influence. He received probation and was let go. But he wasn’t sent back to his county. My best friend, my only child, my son, whose ashes I now carry around my neck, he would still be alive if our laws had been taken seriously and our laws had been enforced. Some of you said that you only want to deport illegals if they commit a felony. But why do you want to wait till someone gets hurt or killed by an illegal? Why not deport an illegal alien at the very first contact, your very first opportunity to deport?"


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Debate Question: Unemployment


“Hi. My name is Frank and I’ve been a former professor of public policy study and labor issues for many years. I have a question about legal immigration. We admit over a million legal immigrants and hundreds of thousands of guestworkers each year yet one out of three Americans who don’t have college degrees are either out of work or they’ve had their wages depressed for a generation. So, as President, would you reduce legal immigration, and if not, why not to help these American workers?”


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Debate Question: Otherwise Law Abiding


“We hear a lot about the so-called ‘otherwise law-abiding’ illegal aliens. Yet, millions of them are engaged in identity theft, identity fraud, Social Security fraud and these crimes are going unpunished, creating victims throughout the United States. Will you pledge to prosecute and deport individuals engaged in this type of activity, or do you believe our government should continue to ignore these crimes?”
Mr. Feere authored the following report detailing the many crimes committed by illegal aliens: “The Myth of the ‘Otherwise Law-Abiding’ Illegal Alien”. He also wrote an op-ed for proposing more debate questions titled, “‘10 immigration questions for the Democratic debate”.


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Debate Question: Port Security


“Before I retired from federal service, I was an assistant chief patrol agent for the U.S. Border Patrol. The concept of using a fence to maintain border security is widely discussed and it would be a useful tool. However it does nothing to address the threat posed to the United States by entry through our Ports of Entry by people who come to this country with bad intent. But our lack of review of their background leaves us vulnerable to an attack similar to the one from 9/11 or worse. How would you deal with that?”


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