Over the years, the opportunities offered by the United States have compelled over 11 million undocumented immigrants to relocate in pursuit of a better life.
As a result, in 2013 the U.S. reached a record high in the deportation of undocumented immigrants.
Although both Republicans and Democrats desire immediate action, they do not agree on an appropriate method.
Currently, the Republican Party favors deportation, which does not reflect public opinion.
According to Pew Research Center, 72 percent of Americans agree that undocumented immigrants who live in the U.S. should be allowed to stay, if they meet certain requirements.
Similarly, the immigration proposal made by Donald Trump, the presidential frontrunner of the Republican Party, does not reflect the opinion of voters.
Trump’s policy would end the concept of birthright citizenship, which is guaranteed by the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Even more disturbing, at least four Republican candidates have voiced their support.
Luckily, the two leading presidential candidates for the Democratic Party have both promised to sign comprehensive immigration reform into law.
While the former Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, and Sen. Bernie Sanders believe in creating a pathway to citizenship, their policies are noticeably different.
Although “illegal,” many undocumented immigrants have lived in the U.S. long enough to call it home.
Therefore, their deportation would devastate many families and leave children, who are natural born citizens, without caretakers.
Although immigration reform hasn’t been a central issue in Sanders’ presidential campaign, he supports a fair and humane immigration policy.
Clinton shares his concern and also believes that the path to full and equal citizenship is an immediate concern.
Numerous undocumented immigrants have been brought to the U.S. as young children, and know no other home.
These children do not deserve to be punished and should be entitled to legal residence.
Clinton and Sanders have both promised to sign the DREAM Act into law, which would eventually offer “Dreamers” citizenship.
Undoubtedly, the United States requires immigration reform and policy should not tear families apart.
Both Democratic candidates claim that if Congress does not pass immigration reform, they will use executive action to give deportation relief to the parents of Dreamers and natural born citizens.
Clinton and Sanders agree that undocumented workers play a central role in the U.S. economy.
Sanders’ policy focuses on fixing the exploitation of immigrants who are vulnerable because of their undocumented status, which results in unfair wages and inhumane conditions.
Alternatively, Clinton’s policy offers work permits to the parents of U.S. citizens and Dreamers.
Republicans and Democrats both agree that immigration reform is critical.
However, the potential Republican candidates have not proposed a substantial policy. The policy of the current frontrunner, Donald Trump, does not reflect voter opinion and would deny the right of natural born citizenship guaranteed by the 14th Amendment.
Although the leading Democratic candidates have proposed noticeably different policies, they are both superior to those proposed by Republicans, which calls for massive deportation and the denial of citizenship.