WASHINGTON – Conservative groups say people in the Golden State don’t realize the president is trying to protect them through his proposed immigration policy changes.
Ian Walters, from the American Conservative Union, which is the nation’s oldest conservative grassroots organization, said this is especially seen with sanctuary cities.
“There are drugs coming in from the border,” said Walters, “There are human trafficking situations.”
Walters is a father of two young girls and said he doesn’t want them to grow up in a city that would protect undocumented immigrants.
”Just as a dad, I think it’s important to make sure that your kids and my girls especially are growing up in a world that’s safe,” he said. “Where law enforcement is able to do their job and protect communities and protect Americans from criminals.”
He said California declaring itself a sanctuary state poses a threat to millions.
“I can’t help but think that sometimes for sanctuary city parents,” he said. “That they’re not gonna have the same chances and options to be able to raise their kids in relative safety.”
Walters claimed illegal immigrants who want to get involved in criminal behavior will flock to sanctuary cities for more leniency, therefore putting families in harm's way.
Walters has spent decades as a communication’s director with the American Conservative Union. Other than sanctuary cities, Walters said Trump’s ‘migrant protection protocols’ policy which keeps migrants seeking admission into the U.S. from Mexico to stay in Mexico while their claims process, allows for fewer problems for the U.S.
"We need to find a way to determine those folks coming in from the southern border, claiming asylum whether it’s a valid claim or not,” he said. “Why wouldn’t you claim whatever you need to claim in order to be absorbed into American communities?”
He says if migrants remain in Mexico, they’re summoned faster and more safely to court.
In the long run, he claims, California’s liberal views will push people away.
“Conservatives and Republicans there often feeling abandoned or like their vote doesn’t count. I think it’s lead to desperation among Republicans who have remained in California,” said Walters.
He claims Republicans are “voting by foot,” meaning they’re moving out to nearby states like purple Nevada. He said he met dozens of former Californians at the CPAC West convention in Reno last year who said they left the state because they felt their conservative voices weren't being heard.
Walters said he thinks Californians are pushing back on the president as a reflex and said he believes in pushing for more common ground.
“Instead of just saying, ‘We don’t like the guy and we are going to oppose everything you do,’ we got a find a way as Americans to come together and have that conversation,” said Walters.
The ACU hosts the annual CPAC convention in Washington, which is the largest conservative gathering for the year. Walters said they all discuss and work on how to enforce the values of liberty and safety to all Americans.