Donald Trump cast himself as the toughest Republican presidential candidate on illegal immigration.
But he’s also spoken very effusively about the immigrant experience in general.
The afterword of Trump and Robert T Kiyosaki’s 2011 book, “Midas Touch: Why Some Entrepreneurs Get Rich — And Why Most Don’t,” included a two-page-long ode to the American immigrant experience and how it can spur entrepreneurship.
“For centuries, Ellis Island in New York Harbour has beckoned and welcomes the ‘huddled masses, yearning to breathe free’ — men and women from all parts of the world drawn by the beacon of hope and freedom, drawn to the Land of Opportunity,” the afterword read.
Whether these immigrants fled oppression or were drawn by the lure of the American dream, most viewed this Land of Opportunity as a place for them to stake their claim, make their mark, and create a life of freedom and happiness for themselves and their children. Those tough, ambitious immigrants were willing to do almost anything to gain a foothold, a humble beginning that would become the foundation for the dreams they would build.
Many first generation immigrants are willing to pay any price, take any job, shoulder any burden if there is a chance it will give them a foothold, a start. They do what must be done, for they have come for the opportunity to build the life of their dreams, to give their children something that they themselves never had. And for that, there is no price too steep, no challenge too great, no burden too heavy.
Trump has been criticised since last summer for his inflammatory rhetoric on immigration, including his campaign-launch speech in which he accused Mexico of sending its “rapists” across the border. He says he’d deport the approximately 11 million immigrants living in the US illegally, but he would let some back in “if they’re really good people.”
Trump has also criticised one of his rivals, Marco Rubio, for pushing to expand H1B visas, which allow foreigners in the US in order to work in high-skilled, specialty occupations.
NOW WATCH: Briefing videos
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.