Former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson is the Libertarian Party nominee for president. Johnson will appear on ballots nationwide, alongside his vice presidential running mate, former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld. So, it's important to know Johnson's position on immigration — a particularly interesting perspective to know, considering he's a former border governor. For starters, he vigorously disagrees with the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, Donald Trump, on his extreme statements about immigration.
"Well, what I have identified is that 30 percent of Republican voters believe the scourge of the earth is Mexican immigration," Johnson said in an interview with NPR. "So he has tapped into this anger, which — you know, it's human nature. We all want to somehow justify why things aren't going right. And I think that Mexican immigration -—legal, illegal — has taken that on. There's a real misunderstanding about illegal immigration."
As a Libertarian, Johnson is not in favor of growing big government, though in his NPR interview, he noted that an "I Side With" quiz revealed he sided more with Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders than former Secretary of State Clinton, according to NPR:
I think at the end of the day, Hillary is going to grow government. Look, when government takes taxes out of my pocket, that's money that I could be spending on my life, enjoying my life as I see fit. I really side with Bernie Sanders on about 75 percent of what he has to say... When it comes to economics, obviously Bernie and I come to a T in the road.
As for immigration, in an interview with Fox News, Johnson specifically called out another candidate. "Look, we should make it as easy as possible for somebody who wants to come into this country and work to be able to get a work visa, a work visa should entail a background check and a social security card that taxes get paid. They are not murderers and rapists..." Johnson said, referencing Trump's presidential announcement speech.
According to The New York Times, polls show Clinton and Trump are neck-in-neck, with Clinton showing 42 percent support and Trump 40 percent. A Huffington Post poll revealed that both Clinton and Trump have unfavorable ratings by more than 50 percent of pollers. Johnson is hoping to be another option for voters who are conflicted with the two presumptive nominees. According to a NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll, 47 percent of registered voters said they would consider a third-party candidate if Clinton and Trump were the nominees. Johnson is reportedly polling at 10 percent, but 15 percent is required to qualify for presidential debates.
"The overwhelming cause of illegal immigration and visa overstays is the fact that our legal immigration process simply doesn’t work, and that we impose absurd caps on various work visas," Johnson said in a statement, according to Politico. He said "Nativism is not an American value," adding that undocumented immigrants are "already here," and "looking to work, unify families and find a better life, and were blocked from entry by system that doesn’t work."