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Republican vice presidential candidate Mike Pence said that undocumented immigrants in the United States would be treated “humanely” in a Donald Trump administration but provided no further clarity on how the GOP nominee would deal with the millions currently living and working peacefully in the country.
“We’re going to enforce the laws of this country. We’re going to make sure that we essentially end illegal immigration once and for all,” Pence said in an interview with NBC's “Meet The Press.”
“And when all of that happens, then, as a nation, he said we can give consideration to how we resolve issues around those that remain. We’ll do it humanely. We’ll do it with the compassion of the American people.”
Pence, however, could not explain his running mate’s perceived evolution of the issue of immigration. Trump sought to dismiss any speculation that he might be softening his stance on immigration last week when laying out a hard-lined immigration plan in Phoenix, Arizona.
But the Indiana governor would not say if Trump would deport the more than 10 million people currently in the country illegally -- a pledge he made while navigating the Republican presidential primary.
“There are people in different circumstances in that category,” said Pence.
Pence also offered little in terms of concrete plans to get Mexico to pay for a wall on the southern border of the United States – a staple of the GOP nominee’s campaign.
“The United States of America is the most powerful economy on the face of the Earth. Access to our economy is enormously valuable to Mexico and every other country in the world,” Pence said.
“The one thing Donald Trump knows is how to do a deal,” he added.
Pence also pledged that both he and Trump would soon release their tax returns, though he could not guarantee the Trump’s documents would become public before Election Day because he is under audit.
"Donald Trump and I are both going to release our tax returns," Pence said. "I'll release mine in the next week."