Issue Position: Immigration
"The time to fix our broken immigration system is now We need stronger enforcement on the border and at the workplace But for reform to work, we also must respond to what pulls people to America Where we can reunite families, we should. Where we can bring in more foreign-born workers with the skills our economy needs, we should"
-- Barack Obama, Statement on U.S. Senate Floor, May 23, 2007
Undocumented population is exploding: The number of undocumented immigrants in the country has increased more than 40 percent since 2000. Every year, more than a half-million people come illegally or illegally overstay their visas.
Immigration bureaucracy is broken: The immigration bureaucracy is broken and overwhelmed, forcing legal immigrants to wait years for applications.
Immigration raids are ineffective: Despite a sevenfold increase in recent years, immigration raids only netted 3,600 arrests in 2006 and have placed all the burdens of a broken system onto immigrant families.
Barack Obama and Joe Biden's Pla
Create Secure Borders
Obama and Biden want to preserve the integrity of our borders. He supports additional personnel, infrastructure and technology on the border and at our ports of entry.
Improve Our Immigration System
Obama and Biden believe we must fix the dysfunctional immigration bureaucracy and increase the number of legal immigrants to keep families together and meet the demand for jobs that employers cannot fill.
Remove Incentives to Enter Illegally
Obama and Biden will remove incentives to enter the country illegally by cracking down on employers who hire undocumented immigrants.
Bring People Out of the Shadows
Obama and Biden support a system that allows undocumented immigrants who are in good standing to pay a fine, learn English, and go to the back of the line for the opportunity to become citizens.
Work with Mexico
Obama and Biden believe we need to do more to promote economic development in Mexico to decrease illegal immigration.
Barack Obama's Record
* Crack Down on Employers: Obama championed a proposal to create a system so employers can verify that their employees are legally eligible to work in the U.S.
* Fix the Bureaucracy: Obama joined Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-IL) to introduce the Citizenship Promotion Act to ensure that immigration application fees are both reasonable and fair. Obama also introduced legislation that passed the Senate to improve the speed and accuracy of FBI background checks.
* Respect Families: Obama introduced amendments to put greater emphasis on keeping immigrant families together.