As an Iraq War Veteran who served two tours of duty searching for roadside bombs and capturing dangerous insurgents, I have put my life on the line to protect this country and my commitment to national security is as strong today as it has ever been. I know what it takes, have done what it takes, and will do what it takes to keep this country safe. When it comes to public safety, let me be perfectly clear, no matter who you are, if you commit a violent crime, you must be punished.

Our immigration system is broken and it is directly a result of the dysfunction in Washington. We must work together towards comprehensive immigration reform that strengthens our borders and our economy.

As I speak with farmers, business owners, and community leaders, they are demanding reform to make sure that our economy and communities are vibrant. This means providing a pathway to citizenship for those who pay their taxes and don’t have a criminal record, holding employers who hire undocumented immigrants accountable, and developing a robust guest worker program.

We must implement a clear directive through the Department of Homeland Security for ICE, so that our local and state law enforcement agencies are no longer having to supplement the federal government’s role in immigration and customs enforcement.

Lastly, I believe that a critical, and often overlooked, component is the need to make a concerted effort to work with other countries to stem the tide of migration under dire circumstances, which has put families and children at significant risk.

In Congress, I will work with both parties to achieve the comprehensive immigration reform that is so desperately needed.