House Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) released the following statement today in response to President Obama's speech calling for comprehensive immigration reform:
"President Obama has stated clearly that comprehensive immigration reform will be a top priority during his second term, and today he took an important step by laying out a smart, workable, and fair vision for how we can achieve this long-sought goal through legislation. Taken together with an announcement by a bipartisan group of Senators that they intend to pursue a comprehensive reform bill over the next few months, it is an encouraging sign that the challenge of how to address the millions of undocumented people living in our communities may soon be met with the serious and cooperative approach this issue deserves.
"Comprehensive immigration reform ought to address not only those seeking to remain here but the many others outside our borders who seek to join in building America's future but have had to face a labyrinth of paperwork, long lines, and interviews stretching over months and even years. It must include securing our borders and also ensuring that the best and brightest from other countries who come here to study STEM subjects are able to remain and work for American companies so we can maintain our competitive advantage in a global marketplace. I hope that House Republicans will work with Democrats and with Senators from both parties to engage with the Administration to move quickly toward a comprehensive immigration reform bill that is fair and that lives up to the values that have led so many to seek a better life on our shores."