Major Party Positions

2017 Update: Following the 2016 election, Donald Trump was elected the 45th President of the United States.

2016 Update: Now that both party conventions have come to a close, each party has released their official platform and made their individual presidential nominees. See NNIRR’s Political Party Comparison Chart to learn about the official Republican and Democratic immigration positions. It is important to read about these platforms, as they often affect the policies of the presidential candidates. To learn more about each party’s convention, see below for coverage of the convention highlights.


The Democratic National Convention began in chaos with the release of an unfortunate email scandal. However, the DNC continued with a full schedule of speakers despite the initial disruption. Some star speakers include Michelle Obama, Bernie Sanders, Tim Kaine, Bill Clinton, Joe Biden and President Obama. On day 2 of the convention, The Democratic Party released their official party platform, where details about their immigration policy may be found on pages 16-17. Additionally, Hillary Clinton became the first woman to be nominated for President. Read her full speech nomination speech here.


As of July 21st, the 2016 GOP Convention officially came to a close. From the protesters who built a wall outside the convention, to the #NeverTrump disruption, to allegations of plagiarism against Melania Trump, to selecting Mike Pence as Mr. Trump’s official running mate, to Ted Cruz’s refusal to endorse Trump, and Trump’s official acceptance of the Republican Presidential Nomination, the convention was not without surprises. Especially relevant to immigration, is the official Republican Party Platform, which was released on day 2 of the convention. Details about the Republican immigration policy may be found under the heading “Immigration and Rule of Law”.


See below for information regarding the 2012 Party Platforms.

Review our 2012 Republican Party and Democrat Party official platform comparision chart here!


The Democratic Party has evolved minimally in it’s official stance on immigration, approved during the 2012 Democratic Party National Convention. The Democratic Party platform outlines comprehensive immigration reform (CIR) as “essential”. The party further outlines a vision to keep families together and to create a pathway to citizenship for “taxpaying, law abiding, and English speaking immigrants”. The Democratic Party commends the progress of security at the United States’ Southwest border. Simultaneously, the Party distinguishes good immigrants from bad immigrants and suggests this distinguishment as a way to prioritize deportations for “criminal”, “violent” immigrants, as opposed to immigrants in more vulnerable situations. In their platform, the Democrats recognize legislation as the only sustainable and permanent solution to reforming the nation’s immigration system.


The Republican Party has also evolved minimally in it’s official stance on immigration, approved during the 2012 Republican Party National Convention. More now than ever before, the Republican Party lists border security as our nation’s number one priority regarding immigration. While the party recognizes the economic contribution of “legal immigrants”, it claims that “illegal labor takes away from US labor”. The party suggests that undocumentedness provides a national security risk. Republicans oppose amnesty for undocumented immigrants, support an electronic verification system at workplaces, and support long term detention of immigrants. Their official platform demands the completion of a fence along US borders.


The official platform on immigration of the Green Party can be found here. The policy states that, “Any immigration policy should be seen as a way to address all people’s humanitarian needs as we undo the damage to local communities and chart a course toward sustainable local economies.” The Green Party states in their platform on immigration that people should be able to live in whichever country they want to. They further propose immediate legal status for all of the undocumented immigrants currently in the United States, and specifically one that calls for a path to citizenship. The party proposes permanent border passes for all Canadian and Mexican citizens, as well as easily accessible work permits. Green Party members support an immigration process that makes a pathway to citizenship affordable, not financially burdening.