Gingrich Clarifies Immigration Policy: No Amnesty
He says most illegal immigrants should reapply for citizenship
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 26, 2011 8:48 AM CST
Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich speaks during a town hall meeting at the Naples Hilton in Naples, Fla., Friday, Nov. 25, 2011.   (AP Photo/Erik Kellar)

(Newser) – Newt Gingrich said he was “prepared to take the heat” when he offered his opinion that the US should be “humane” in enforcing immigration law, and now he finds himself fighting back against criticism from his fellow presidential contenders, MSNBC reports. “I am not for amnesty for anyone. I am not for a path to citizenship for anybody who got here illegally,” Gingrich clarified last night at a campaign event in Florida. “But I am for a path to legality for those people whose ties are so deeply into America that it would truly be tragic to try and rip their family apart.”

“I think the vast majority [of illegal immigrants] will go home and should go home and then should reapply,” he continued. “I do not think anybody should be eligible for citizenship. I am suggesting a certification of legality with no right to vote and no right to become an American citizen unless they go home and apply through the regular procedures back home and get in line behind everybody else who has obeyed the law and stayed back there.” Click to read about Gingrich's endorsement problem.