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September 19, 2012

Host: Ted Simons

Immigration Reform Novel

  |   Video
  • Clint Bolick of the Goldwater Institute discusses the book he is writing with former Florida Governor Jeb Bush on the topic of immigration reform.
  • Clint Bolick - Goldwater Institute
Category: Immigration   |   Keywords: immigration, reform, book, novel, ,

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Ted Simons: Is there a solution to the illegal immigration problem in Arizona? Many lean in favor of enforcement as the only answer, but others are shifting to what they see is a more comprehensive approach. One of those looking at the broader picture is Clint Bolick, director of the Goldwater Institute. He's writing a book with former Florida governor Jeb bush on how best to fix the nation's broken immigration system. It's good to have you here. Thanks for joining us.
Clint Bolick: It is great to be here with you Ted.
Ted Simons: Why team with Jeb bush, why focus on immigration?

Clint Bolick: Jeb is one of the true statesmen in America today. He and I have worked extensively on education reform together, and he's a real voice of common sense within the Republican Party, which is really I think largely lost its way on immigration. I think the timing is exactly right for this. We face a real immigration problem in that we are losing some of the most talented people in our country to other countries. Companies are leaving because they can't hire the best and the brightest from around the world as they traditionally have. And we've got a social welfare system that can't -- we can't afford unless we have young newcomers come to our country.

Ted Simons: It sounds like an economic approach to immigration.

Clint Bolick: It's economic and moral. This is a nation of immigrants. I think we owe to future immigrants the same opportunities that past immigrants have had, and that is to come into the country legally.

Ted Simons: What are some of your solutions, some of you're working with Governor Bush, what are the things you're looking at, the ideas you're proposing?

Clint Bolick: It's still in process, because we're writing the book as we talk. But the two main principles are that we need a really well-functioning, rational immigration system, in part so we don't have such illegal immigration. And that it really has to be bound by the rule of law. People need to know the rules of the game, the rules have got to be calculated to let people in who are honest and hard working. But those rules really need to be enforced.

Ted Simons: Some would say the rules are there. It's already laid out, all you got to do is follow the law.

Clint Bolick: This is a law that has developed over a century, and the holes have been plugged so many times, and bandaged over, it's a total mess. This is one of the most complex systems of laws that we have on the books. Our approach is to start from scratch and to put together an immigration strategy that reflects the reality that we're in today.

Ted Simons: Included in the strategy it sounds like for permanent status, what, you would need to pay a fine, have a clean record? Those are the prerequisites?

Clint Bolick: Yeah. We haven't gotten into the details, but yes. People who came into the country illegally should not be rewarded, but by the same token, it would be crazy for us to have a mass deportation of people, many of whom have become pillars of the community, and raised families here. So we think that the right approach is not to have a path to citizenship necessarily, but to have a path for permanent legal residency.

Ted Simons: And if people were interested in citizenship, you have them, from what I've read, from what you've said so far, they would have to apply from their home country, go to their home country and apply?

Clint Bolick: That's what we're looking at. That's an idea that County Attorney Bill Montgomery has suggested, and we are taking a look at that as one of the possible proposals. But on the one hand we do not -- we don't think that you can have an amnesty and ever expect people to follow the law again. On the other hand, deporting 10 million, 12 million people is really not a very viable solution.

Ted Simons: Speaking of viability, I wonder how realistic it would be to say to these folks, OK, citizenship is there, but you have to go back to a country you may never have -- as an adult you may not have been there.

Clint Bolick: Well, the fact is that when people commit crimes in our country, they forgo the privilege of voting and that sort of thing. When people come into our country illegally they have to know if they come in illegally, that there are going to be consequences.

Ted Simons: The green cards based on job skills, not family ties?

Clint Bolick: Certainly immediate family reunification; moms, dads, sisters, siblings and kids, that's going to remain a cornerstone of our immigration system. But right now the vast majority of people who are getting green cards are more distant relatives, and they're pushing out the people who would come here because of their skills or their labor. We have right now only 65,000 Visas for highly skilled workers every year. Canada has 1/10th of our population and gives out more Visas. They're cleaning our clock. We can't afford that anymore. We need to increase dramatically the number of people who can come in and fill the brain drain that we're having right now.

Ted Simons: Some of the criticisms, let’s get to them. I can see already, folks will say just arrest and deport anyone who is undocumented. Fine, arrest, any employer who hires an undocumented person. It's just that simple.

Clint Bolick: Certainly employer sanctions have to be an important part of the enforcement system. But an enforcement-only approach is doomed to fail. The people who are coming across the border, if they don't see a legal way to do it, they will do it illegally. Our ancestors faced far greater barriers and burdens than do immigration -- than do illegal immigrants today. If we won't let them in the front door, they're going to come in the back door.

Ted Simons: The Goldwater Institute is known for going to court on a variety of issues. Where has the Goldwater Institute been, you in particular, on these immigration issues in the past?

Ted Simons: Well, first of all, this is not a Goldwater Institute project. I am working on this on my own time, and through the Hoover institution with which I have an academic affiliation. Goldwater has primarily viewed this as a federal issue. It's one that frankly divides supporters of the Goldwater Institute. So I'm grateful that Goldwater is allowing me to pursue an issue of great personal passion.

Ted Simons: And you mentioned it divides a lot of folks, especially in the Republican party. There are critics who will say this is a way for the Republicans to look more moderate as the election approaches. How would you respond?

Clint Bolick: Well, the book is not going to be out before the election. Jeb Bush has been on record on this issue for a long time, and he has urged Mitt Romney to take a more moderate inclusive approach. But this is not about the Republican Party. I'm not a Republican, I'm someone who believes in America's future, and immigration has got to as it always has in our past, be a vital part of our future.

Ted Simons: When can we expect to see this book?

Clint Bolick: No later than May of next year.

Ted Simons: All right. It's good to see you.

Clint Bolick: Great to see you, thanks.

In Memory: Sheriff Larry Dever

  |   Video
  • The Southern Arizona sheriff who became a leading voice in the debate over illegal immigration recently died in a car accident near Williams, Arizona. Paul Rubin, who wrote numerous stories about Dever for the Phoenix New Times, talks about the Cochise County sheriff’s legacy.
  • Paul Rubin - Reporter, Phoenix New Times
Category: Politics   |   Keywords: memory, sheriff, dever, ,

View Transcript
Ted Simons: Good evening, and welcome to "Arizona Horizon." I'm Ted Simons.

Ted Simons: Larry Dever, Republican sheriff for Cochise county, died last night in a rollover on a gravel forest road near Williams. Dever was on his way to meet one of his sons for a hunting trip. He was known for trying to keep a lid on the more strident voices on both sides of the immigration debate. Joining us is Paul Rubin who wrote numerous stories about Dever for the "Phoenix New Times." He was a friend of yours, wasn't he?

Paul Rubin:He was a friend and professional acquaintance, 32 years and counting.

Ted Simons: How did you get to know him?

Paul Rubin: When I was a fledgling young kid, down at the border, he was a real border sheriff. He did have a jurisdiction on the border, which is a key component to his later fame. Not fortune, just fame. We got to know each other, he was a swat team guy, and I was the young whipper snapper trying to learn how to cover the cops. And we had a common ground in that we both loved baseball. And every time we got tough with each other and nasty, we'd always talk about baseball. And we got to know each other really well and got to know the families and all that super guy.

Ted Simons: Well-known for thoughts on illegal immigration and -- what were his thoughts on the immigration issue?

Paul Rubin: When I said he's a real border sheriff, he was fully cognizant of the onslaught in the early 2000s of illegal aliens coming up from central America and Mexico. And he was keenly aware of the damage that was being done to the ranch and to some individuals and all that. He also, though, was also keenly aware that this was a problem that he didn't put a defeat of the aliens that were coming up. He said these people are trying to get a job, he was not a one-dimensional guy, and he didn't scream and yell loudly about the fact that these were evil brown people whatsoever. As a matter of fact he did his mission in central America as a youth, and it changed his life. Seeing how other cultures and work ethics.

Ted Simons: It sounds like he was more critical of U.S. government federal policy than he was of the immigrants themselves. I know one of your stories he describes comprehensive reform, immigration reform as bull pucky.

Paul Rubin: There's a phrase for you. Stop the presses, a border sheriff in a rural county is going to be against the federal government in all way, shape, and form. You don't get elected trying to bring in the feds and go that direction. He was consistent from the start of the immigration problem, which didn't start yesterday, but it really came to the floor in the early 2000s. He's a law and order guy. He wanted his people, meaning his constituency as safe as possible. I thought we had a lot of debates over the years, and I thought he sometimes was getting tooled by the national forces that became very prominent in the SB 1070 argument. And I thought because he presented so well, you take one look at this guy and hear him for one minute, he oozes sincerity. What you saw on these TV shows if you watch fox TV, you'd see him a lot. He was very sincere. He wasn't a Johnny come lately like our Maricopa County sheriff who sees a moment and grabs the population, angry with illegals. He wasn't a guy that came in from Massachusetts and saw a chance to get fame and glory. He was what he was and that's why he was -- that's why he rose to where he rose.

Ted Simons: Indeed, conservatives obviously liked him, yet democrats, liberals, many of them -- I thought -- personally. That's the thing. One of the quotes in your Stover, most people intuitively trust him.

Paul Rubin: That's interesting. I wrote that?

Ted Simons: Yes, did you. You quoted someone who said that. Someone on the opposite side of the immigration issue, yet they trusted him.

Paul Rubin: He was -- you're going to be hearing in the upcoming days that he was a patriot, an American hero, a guy who drew the line in the sand against the forces of evil from the south. Well, that's a little cartoonish, and it's a caricature. He was actually a very decent, good, honest man, flawed, was he a great man? What makes a great man? He was a very good man, loyal to his six son and wife and all the grandkids. Loyal to his mom who passed away four days ago. I'm sure he was spinning in his mind, when he drove off the road. It's -- he was a guy who is -- who was consistent from the day I met him, about '80, '81, until we spoke yesterday. Hours before he passed away.

Ted Simons: His relationship with Joe, Paul Babeu, what was his relationship?

Paul Rubin: It's hard to have a relationship with Joe Arpaio if you're another sheriff, because you have to share the stage. I'll leave it at that. He thought Joe was a one-off, and didn't really regard him one way or the other, other than a few adjectives that we'll remain nameless right now. Babeu is a more complicated situation, he liked Paul, he did not like the way Paul handled his own situation. Not with the sexual orientation, that mattered nothing to him, it was the way that Paul had in Larry's mind deceived Larry about who he was. And he thought at the end of the day that Paul was about Paul, and not about the greater good of their mission.

Ted Simons: Last question, obviously a lot of history here, just very interesting gentleman. What is Larry Dever's legacy?

Paul Rubin: I thought about that today. His legacy on the national stage is going to be this old western sheriff with the old hat, kind of plain-talking guy, straight ahead guy. The legacy to his family and the people that knew him was a guy with a droll sense of humor, who didn't miss a trick, who was loyal to the max with everybody around him, the tears that have been shed today down in Cochise county, I've talked to the people down there is vast. So the legacy -- his real legacy, forget this national immigration thing, the real legacy is the one you and I would like to have -- people that loved him, he was loyal, he was as truthful as a guy can be, and he was loved. And that's it.

Ted Simons: That's a good place to stop. Paul, thank you so much for joining us.

Paul Rubin: Thanks, Ted. See you again.

Move on When Ready

  |   Video
  • More Arizona schools are getting involved in the second year of a national pilot program designed to allow high school students to move on to college or advanced coursework as early as their sophomore year. Dr. Sybil Francis, Executive Director of the Center for the Future of Arizona, provides an update on the Move on When Ready initiative.
  • Dr. Sybil Francis - Executive Director, Center for the Future of Arizona
Category: Education   |   Keywords: education, move on when ready, college, highschool, ,

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Ted Simons: A program that allows high school students to move on to college, technical school, or advanced course work is in its second year in Arizona. And already, an increasing number of students and schools are opting for the accelerated program. Here to talk about Move On When Ready is Dr. Sybil Francis, executive director of the center for the future of Arizona and leader of the Move On When Ready initiative. Good to see you again.

Sybil Francis: Thank you, thank you for having me.

Ted Simons: It's 30 Arizona high schools now with this program. That is an increase, isn’t it?

Sybil Francis: That is a huge increase. Last year we started with 12. The leading schools and then this year we've added 18. So we have a total of 30 schools.

Ted Simons: Why do you think this is happening?

Sybil Francis: I think there's a couple reasons. One is, there's great excitement about the idea that we could actually provide a program that would prepare kids for college. And in the state as a whole we're talking about preparing kids for college, concerned about graduation rates, concerned about kids not being prepared and needing remedial course work when they go to community college or to University. So there's a great hunger for knowing what college readiness looks like and to be able to deliver that and support the schools in doing it.

Ted Simons: So with that in mind, give us a definition of what Move On When Ready is.

Sybil Francis: What it really is, is using the school day and school year differently. Right now in order to gain a high school diploma in Arizona you need to pass all your course and pass the AIMS test at a 10th grade level. You may finish high school and have passed all your courses but you may not actually be ready for college. We're turning that around and we're saying, the goal really is college readiness. We don't care so much about how long it takes you. You might take a shorter time or longer time, but the goal is a performance-based mastery of the material you need to learn.

Ted Simons: What happens if it does take you a little bit longer to get to that level? It can only take you so long, eventually you'll have to graduate from high school, wouldn’t you?

Sybil Francis: Sure. We've designed a program that we -- that is a foundational level for college readiness. In theory, and this has gotten a lot of attention, you could master that level in two years. We don't really expect a lot of students to do that right away because it's very rigorous. So in theory that becomes a foundational level. And the way we define college ready is the ability to move on to post-secondary work in your college ready -- in your college courses without needing remediation. Once you have that foundational level you can take more advanced courses, but some students may take two years. We think it's doable and accessible because we've set the level at a level of rigor that’s high, but within reach for most students. So we think most students should be able to do this in four years if necessary.

Ted Simons: If they do it in three years, where do they go? what options do they have?

Sybil Francis: We see ourselves providing multiple options for students. So once they reach that benchmark, that college ready benchmark, we're saying, you could go on to community college if you wanted to. You could take more advanced courses to prepare yourself for selective University. Or you could deepen your work in a career and technical education. So when we say you reach that college-ready benchmark, which is represented by the Grand Canyon diploma, you have choices. You can stay in high school or move on. That's where the Move On When Ready name comes in.

Ted Simons: As far as the diploma, there's a performance-placed diploma, correct?

Sybil Francis: Yes.

Ted Simons: Talk to us about that.

Sybil Francis: The performance-based diploma is based on the recognition that you have achieved this college readiness level. A diploma today, you could be very, very academically accomplished, or you may not be ready for college and you may need to take remedial course work. It’s kind of all over the map. So what we're saying is, it's the outcome of college readiness that we are aiming for and if you achieve that level, then you qualify for this Grand Canyon diploma.

Ted Simons: This is for schools, this is voluntary, correct?

Sybil Francis: Absolutely.

Ted Simons: What kind of funding is needed, what kind of funding have you seen as far as requirement and such?

Sybil Francis: Well, the schools have been able to implement this program within the funding that they have. It doesn't mean they've been able to do everything we think ideally they need to do. So probably the most demanding resources would be teacher time, teacher professional development, and then the assessments that students need to take are more expensive than current assessments. So that's where the challenge is in terms of finding the resources to do that.

Ted Simons: Indeed. The common course standards, which are just now getting a lot of attention because everyone’s starting to go – hey wait a minute, these things are being implemented. Compare Move On When Ready to these particular common course standards for the state.

Sybil Francis: Well, the Move On When Ready curriculum is completely aligned with the common core. So we are really excited because our schools are the first in the state to actually be implementing the common core standards.

Ted Simons: Again, when you say prepares kids for college, prepares kids for careers, a parent watching right now will say, how exactly is my kid going to be better prepared for college or better prepared for a career just because of this particular path?

Sybil Francis: It has to do with how the instruction is delivered and the philosophy. So the instruction is delivered in such a way that students are developing their analytical capabilities, problem solving, writing capabilities, instead of being focused on passing a standardized test such as AIMS, the kinds of assessments we give to the students are really much richer and really drive the students and teachers to a much higher level of achievement. That's the way we accomplish this. It's a completely different delivery system for education, and then the benchmark is college readiness rather than the lower benchmark of simply passing your courses or passing AIMS.

Ted Simons: What are you hearing? Obviously more schools are getting involved. What kind of reaction are you getting? And what kind of challenges are these schools face something.

Sybil Francis: Well our schools, because it's voluntary, they're all very excited about this, and I think the excitement is really growing. We're very -- we've got great leaders in the superintendents, in principals, the teachers we're hearing are excited, the students, we had a school where the students when they took their exams came in suits and ties, that's how seriously they took this. The challenges really are, this is a very different way of structuring the school day, structuring the year. When one says this is Move On When Ready, and that it's not about the time it takes you need to take the time to prepare the student, that's a very different model. I'll give the quick example. If you take algebra I now and pass with a C minus, in a traditional system you go on to the next class math course, that is geometry. In this system a C minus you may pass your course in the traditional system but you may not be performing that kind of math at a level that you can succeed in math in college. So the school and the teachers need to find a way to supplement that student's experience. So the student is not just in lock step moving forward, they really have to create, carve out time in a day and identify the students that need help and support them.

Ted Simons: Well, sounds like obviously it must be working because the word is getting out and more schools are getting involved. Congratulations on your success and thank you for joining us.

Sybil Francis: Thank you.