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Public Statements

Obama Statement on the May 1 Immigration Marches

Statement

By:
Date:
Location: Chicago, IL


Obama Statement on the May 1 Immigration Marches

Two years ago, I came home to Chicago to witness the mobilization of hundreds of thousands of citizens and immigrants united in an effort to fix our immigration system. I spoke to the marchers that day, and Senator Kennedy spoke to those marching in Washington. They said to us, "today we march and tomorrow we vote." Two years later, our immigration problems remain unresolved, and those who want change will have to vote for change in November. So today, I encourage the thousands of people who are marching and calling for change to work hard registering voters in the months to come. Your vote is your voice.

Four-hundred thousand marchers were in Chicago that day and hundreds of thousands of others came out and stood up around the country. They were marching to put a human face on the idea of America as a country of immigrants: the notion that people can come here and pursue a better life for themselves and, most importantly, for their children, if they work hard and apply themselves.

Two years later, politicians remain polarized and the challenge is unresolved. On the anniversary of those marches, I again express my commitment to comprehensive immigration reform and will do everything I can to bring order and compassion to a system that is broken today. It is in our interest and true to our tradition to come together and solve this problem. And as President, I intend to lead us in that effort.

Hace 2 años, vine a casa a Chicago para ser testigo de la mobilización de cientos de miles de ciudadanos e imigrantes unidos en un esfuerzo para arreglar nuestro sistema de inmigración. Hablé a los marchantes ese día y el Senador Kennedy habló a aquellos que estaban marchando en Washington. Nos dijeron, "hoy marchamos y mañana votamos". Dos años después, nuestro problema de inmigración sigue sin resolverse, y aquellos que quieran cambio tendrán que votar por cambio en Noviembre. Por eso hoy, yo invito a aquellos que marchan por cambio, a que trabajen registrando votos en los meses por venir. Su voto es su decisión.

Cuatroscientos mil marchantes estuvieron en Chicago ese día y cientos de miles de personas más salieron y se unieron alrededor del país. Ellos marchaban para ponerle una cara humana a la idea de América como un país de inmigrantes: la noción que la gente puede venir acá y buscar una vida mejor para sí mismos, y más importante, para sus hijos, si trabajan duro y se aplican.

Dos años después, los políticos siguen polarizados y el desafío sigue sin resolverse. En el aniversario de esas marchas, quiero otra vez expresar mi compromiso a la reforma de inmigración integral y que haré todo lo que pueda para traer orden y compasión a un sistema que hoy esta roto. Está en nuestro interés y es parte de nuestra tradición unirnos y resolver problemas. Como presidente, mi intención es guiarnos en ese camino.


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