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What the New Republican Party Platform Says About Immigration

Aligns heavily with Donald Trump's stance on immigration

Jul 9, 2024

Senator Tom Cotton (R-AR), President Donald Trump, and Senator David Perdue (R-GA)

The Republican National Committee’s 2024 Platform, released Monday, aligns heavily with Donald Trump’s stance on immigration, with a focus on closing the U.S.-Mexico border and conducting mass deportations.

What Does the RNC Platform Say?

The platform starts with 20 promises, beginning with two that focus on immigration. “SEAL THE BORDER, AND STOP THE MIGRANT INVASION” is the platform’s number 1 policy, followed by “CARRY OUT THE LARGEST DEPORTATION OPERATION IN AMERICAN HISTORY.” The platform, the first released by the party since 2016, goes on to detail the policy proposals. Here are the key points on immigration:

  1. Seal the Border and Stop the Migrant Invasion: The platform promises an aggressive approach to stopping “open-border policies” and ending the “Invasion at the Southern Border.” This includes restoring Trump-era border policies, completing the border wall, deploying advanced technology, and moving troops to the southern border. It also calls for a “full Fentanyl Blockade” by the U.S. Navy to combat drug trafficking.
  2. Enforce Immigration Laws: Republicans plan to strengthen ICE, increase penalties for illegal entry and visa overstays, and reinstate the “Remain in Mexico” policy. They also propose invoking the Alien Enemies Act to remove gang members, drug dealers, and cartel members from the U.S. The platform includes reintroducing the travel ban and using Title 42 to address child trafficking​.
  3. Largest Deportation Program: The platform commits to reversing the Democrats’ “Open Borders Policies” and conducting the largest deportation operation in American history, focusing on removing illegal immigrants who have violated U.S. laws.
  4. Strict Vetting: Republicans plan to use federal law to prevent the entry of individuals deemed hostile to American values, including “Christian-hating Communists, Marxists, and Socialists,” and emphasize extreme vetting to exclude jihadists and their sympathizers.
  5. Stop Sanctuary Cities: The platform calls for cutting federal funding to sanctuary cities that do not cooperate with federal immigration enforcement and requires local authorities to hand over illegal immigrants to ICE​.
  6. Merit-Based Immigration: Republicans will prioritize so-called merit-based immigration. This includes ending chain migration (the process whereby immigrants sponsor relatives or family members to immigrate to a country) and prioritizing American workers​.

These policies reflect a continuation of the hardline immigration stance that characterized the Trump administration, with an emphasis on enforcement and border security over pathways to citizenship or comprehensive immigration reform.

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