Romney says immigration plan flawed; parts amount to ‘amnesty’

Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney said Friday that a Senate compromise on immigration reform is flawed because it makes it too easy for illegal immigrants to continue to live in this country. The former Massachusetts governor was attending the state conference of the Georgia Republican Party. He said the immigration plan unveiled Thursday “has some positive features” but shouldn’t include the “Z-visa” provision. (…) Casting himself as the true conservative in a crowded Republican field, Romney said he believes voters in the South will be willing to support a former Northeastern governor because of stances like his opposition to abortion and gay marriage and support of lower taxes and a strong military. “Those values and those conservative perspectives are the values that voters in the South share,” he said. He also downplayed the possibility that his Mormon faith would turn off Republican voters in the Bible Belt. “I’m not running for pastor-in-chief; I’m running for a secular position,” Romney said. “I don’t think Americans anywhere choose their candidate based on what church you go to that’s what they do in other places,” like nations run by Islamic fundamentalists, he said.