WHERE ARE THE DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES ON IMMIGRATION?: Here's a breakdown from POLITICO's Ted Hesson:
On the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which offers deportation relief and work permits to undocumented immigrants brought to the U.S. as children, most candidates agreerecipients should have a path to citizenship. Sen. Kamala Harris has added that she would take executive actions that could allow Dreamers to obtain legal status if Congress doesn't act.
Several Democratic candidates would decriminalize illegal immigration. Thirteen support repealing Section 1325 of Title 8 of the U.S. Code, which makes crossing the border without undergoing an inspection by an immigration officer a misdemeanor offense. That was the statute used by the Trump administration to justify separating families under its "zero-tolerance" policy which separated thousands of families in the spring of 2018. The decriminalizers include Harris, Mayor Pete Buttigieg, Sen. Cory Booker, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand , former HUD Secretary Julián Castro, Wayne Messam, Rep. Seth Moulton, Sen. Bernie Sanders, former Rep. Joe Sestak, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, Marianne Williamson, Tom Steyer and Andrew Yang.
Six candidates believe criminal penalties for illegally crossing the border should remain in place. They include former Rep. Beto O' Rourke, Sen. Michael Bennet, Gov. John Hickenlooper, former Rep. John Delaney, Rep. Tim Ryan, and Gov. Steve Bullock. At Tuesday night's presidential debate, Bullock said, "We got a hundred thousand people showing up at the border right now. If we decriminalize entry ... we'll have multiples of that." O'Rourke said: "I expect that people who come here follow our laws" and "we reserve the right to criminally prosecute them." More from Hesson on POLITICO's 2020 Issues Tracker.