Republican presidential candidate Chris Christie offered a novel way to track immigrants and foreign visitors coming to the US on 29 August. The New Jersey governor said that if elected, he plans to track incoming visitors using FedEx's tracking technology.
"At any moment, FedEx can tell you where that package is. It's on the truck. It's at the station. it's on the airplane," he said during a speaking engagement at a VFW hall in New Hampshire. "Yet we let people come to this country with visas, and the minute they come in, we lose track of them."
According to ABC News, Christie said he would enlist the founder of Federal Express Fred Smith to teach Immigration and Custom Enforcement how to track immigrants who overstay their visas. He said, "We need to have a system that tracks you from the moment you come in, and then when your time is up, we go get you and tap you on the shoulder and say, 'Excuse me, thanks for coming, time to go.'"
Smith's daughter Samantha Smith, who works as Christie's campaign spokeswoman clarified the candidates comments. "What he is talking about is better leveraging technology not only in this regard issuing visas to track, but also using drones on the border."
ABC News reported that Christie has taken a fairly moderate stance on immigration reform in the US. The New Jersey Republican does not endorse building a fence along the US-Mexico border, but has advocated for a stronger E-Verify system.
Christie was questioned about his tracking proposition on Fox News Sunday and was asked if he envisioned immigrants wearing bar codes on their wrists, the Wall Street Journal reported. Christie stood by his comments in New Hampshire but offered little details about how his plan would work.
"I don't mean people are packages, so let's not be ridiculous," Christie said. "My point was that this is once again a situation where the private sector laps us in the government with the use of technology. Let's use the same type of technology [to] make sure that 40% of the 11 million people here illegally don't overstay their visas."