Republican Congresswoman Renee Ellmers from the Second District of North Carolina recently survived a primary challenge from Frank Roche, an anti-immigrant tea partier.

Like many tea partiers, the conservative Mr. Roche is in favor of government regulation only in those instances where he favors the regulations.  In a March 28, 2014 interview with David Steinberg of PJ Media, Mr. Roche stated that “we need to sharply reduce our yearly legal immigration.  We need to move away from family reunification as a basis for our immigration system, and go back to a national origins-based system, one based on the economic interests of the United States . . . [w]e must move away from official recognition of multiculturalism, identity politics, and political correctness.  These social counterparts to our immigration numbers are what makes immigration so damaging to the United States, so divisive.”

Apparently Mr. Roche believes that immigrants should be allowed in the United States only as long as they can be economically productive, leaving their families behind.  His aversion to multiculturalism is difficult to understand in a country whose roots stretch to all corners of the globe.

Luckily, the voters of North Carolina helped Congresswoman Ellmers soundly defeat Mr. Roche.  Her more moderate views favor stronger enforcement and reasonable reform of immigration laws.

A May 6 Washington Wire article called this contest “the nation’s only serious GOP primary challenge based on immigration policy.”  Ms. Ellmers’ 58 – 42 defeat of Mr. Roche shows that those who lean right also understand the valuable role that immigrants play in the United States.

We can only hope that other Republicans in Congress take note.

Nancy M. Vizer

Author Nancy M. Vizer

Ms. Vizer has experience in most aspects of immigration law and has participated on panels at several continuing legal education seminars concerning immigration topics. She has also made presentations to both faculty and human resources staff at a number of universities in connection with immigration employment issues.

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