Rick Santorum: U.S. Needs Newcomers

Kevin Cirilli, Politico, December 5, 2012

Rick Santorum called for immigration reform on Tuesday, saying that without newcomers from abroad the United States is going to shrink.

“I think the fact that we send some of those people back and don’t give them the opportunity to participate here is wrong,” Santorum told POLITICO. “I think we need to look at a simple fact: We are not having enough children to replace ourselves. Our country is not growing in population simply by the people that are here.”

He continued: “If it wasn’t for immigration, our country would be declining in population. It’s very hard to have economic growth and a forward-looking country that is declining in population.”

Santorum joined other conservatives who have spoken out recently on the issue of immigration following GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney’s failed election bid, which some say was due to him not being able to attract enough of the Hispanic vote. Earlier Tuesday, former President George W. Bush spoke in Dallas, saying immigrants help the economy.

Santorum—who also said he is not ruling out a 2016 presidential run—stressed that as a first-generation American who is the son of an immigrant, he understands the issue particularly well.

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