By Bud Foster - email
(KOLD) - Since the likelihood of Governor Jan Brewer and her opponent Democrat Terry Goddard meeting face to face again before the November election is slim, we decided to give them some face time.
We sat the two down individually, Brewer has refused any more debates, to ask them about immigration, jobs and education.
On immigration, they both agree illegal migration is a problem, but how to deal with it, is where they differ.
"I believe a safe border is when people can feel safe in their homes and go to their mailboxes," says Brewer. "Particularly those who live in Southern Arizona who live on the border"
"I believe a secure border needs to be defined first and foremost," says Goddard.
A secure border is different things to different people and the candidates are a perfect example of that.
"I've called repeatedly on the federal government to complete the fence. I think that's very important" she says. "More National Guard. 600 is what we got but that's not nearly enough."
But Goddard believes the problem can be solved by reaching deep into Mexico going after the cartels.
"We have the investigative prosecution skills in this country ... to go find these people, prosecute them, jail them tear apart their organizations," he says. "Because that will do more make our border secure."
Immigration has become an important campaign topic because of the passage of SB 1070 last spring. It boiled over in the hot summer months and the effects still linger.
"I think we got the attention of the federal government. They know where Arizona is now," she says. "Now if they'll just do their job."
Goddard agrees the federal government has failed but says its about more than just troops on the border.
"They ignore the fact that 50% of those who are here illegally, came here legally. They didn't sneak across the border. They came here with visas and overstayed," he says. "You can have the most impenetrable border in the world, and those people will still be coming across."
Whether SB 1070 has created a division between the US and Mexico, also divides the candidates.
"From what I'm hearing from folks who work everyday with Mexico, the folks who would normally export through Arizona are looking for options, " he says. "And they're trying to find ways, ports in California and Texas who might be receptive to their goods. "They're seriously considering doing that."
"Mexico has been our southern border and our friends forever and I don't believe it has anything to do with commerce or the economy. We need what they have and they need what we have," says Brewer. "We'll continue to move in that direction."
There are two other candidates on the ballot for Governor, Barry Hess a Libertarian and Larry Gist of the Green Party.
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