McCain's Border Dance Continues, Says Democratic National Committee

New Website, Same Double Talk on Immigration Reform WASHINGTON , May 5 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- After announcing the new Spanish-language page of his website during a press conference in Arizona this morning, John McCain once again tried...


MCCAIN IN MARCH: McCain Called Arizona's "High-Tech" Virtual Fence a "Failed Effort" and a "Disgrace." The AP reported McCain "told reporters in Phoenix on Monday that not enough research has been done on the 28-mile array of radars and surveillance cameras. McCain says it is a failed effort." "It's a - it's a disgrace. It's a disgrace. They spent a huge amount of money on this quote virtual fence and it's just. I mean. I - It's so disappointing when the Americans highest, one of their highest priorities is to secure our borders, that we have a major corporation that gets a major contract and it turns into be a failed effort, but, in no way does this diminish my enthusiasm or anybody else's to get our borders secure." [CNN Live Feed ( Phoenix, AZ ), 3/3/08; [AP, 3/3/08]]

MCCAIN TODAY: We Must Secure The Border First. "We must secure the borders and the border state governors will then certify that the borders are secure. Then we have a temporary worker program with tamper-proof biometric documents and we address the issue of people who have come here illegally." [CNN Live Feed ( Phoenix, AZ ), 5/5/08]

February of 2007: McCain Admitted He Was Pandering to Conservatives on Border Enforcement, Saying, "I Think the Fence is Least Effective. But I'll Build the Goddamned Fence If They Want It." "A day earlier, in Milwaukee , in front of an audience of more sympathetic businessmen, McCain had been asked how debate over the immigration bill was playing politically. 'In the short term, it probably galvanizes our base,' he said. 'In the long term, if you alienate the Hispanics, you'll pay a heavy price.' Then he added, unable to help himself, 'By the way, I think the fence is least effective. But I'll build the goddamned fence if they want it.'" [Vanity Fair, February 2007 ]

In September of 2006, McCain Said "Enforcement First" Was "An Ineffective and Ill-Advised Approach" to Immigration Reform. "In passing this legislation, the Senate rejected the argument for an 'enforcement first' strategy that focuses on border security only, an ineffective and ill-advised approach. . . . "Congress cannot take a piecemeal approach to a national security crisis. I believe the only way to truly secure our border and protect our Nation is through the enactment of comprehensive immigration reform. As long as there is a need for workers in the United States and people are willing to cross the desert to make a better life for their families, our border will never be secure." . . . "If Congress thinks that it can continue this piecemeal approach to border security and achieve any real results for our national security, it is sadly mistaken." [Congressional Record, 9/29/06]

In May of 2006, McCain Said An Enforcement-First Approach to Immigration Reform Would Never Succeed in Stopping Illegal Immigration. "No wall, no barrier, no sensor, no barbed wire will ever stop people from trying to do what is a basic yearning of human beings all over the world, and that is to have better lives for themselves and their families." . . . "And as much as I believe in technology and as much as I think walls are important and UAVs and all that, there has never been a case in history where you have been able to stop people from doing something that has to do with their very existence. That is the way many people feel who come here." [Congressional Record, 5/16/06]

In March of 2006, McCain Said An Enforcement-Only Bill Would "Never Be Fully Enforceable Regardless of Every Conceivable Border Security Improvement We Make." "The border security provisions under the leader's bill and the Judiciary Committee's bill provide sound proposals to promote strong enforcement and should be part of any final bill. However, I do not believe the Senate should or will pass an enforcement-only bill. Our experiences with our current immigration system have proven that outdated or unrealistic laws will never be fully enforceable regardless of every conceivable border security improvement we make. Despite an increase in Border Patrol agents from 3,600 to 10,000, despite quintupling the Border Patrol budget, despite the employment of new technologies and tactics, all to enforce current immigration laws, illegal immigration drastically increased during the 1990s." [Congressional Record, 3/30/06]

2001: McCain Opposed Federal Funding for Border Security. In 2001, Senator McCain criticized federal funding for projects that would be used by border and law enforcement agencies to increase security measures. McCain blasted the "unrequested" spending as a "further burden to the American taxpayers." McCain listed opposition to earmarks for several projects in Arizona that included a detainee facility in Prescott , a border guard service processing center in Florence , a border patrol sector headquarters in Tucson, and border patrol stations in Yuma and Douglas . [McCain Senate Press Release, 9/13/2001]