Today, President Barack Obama outlined his vision for comprehensive immigration reform one day after a bipartisan group of Senators announced their intention to introduce legislation. A delegation from the Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC) met with President Obama at the White House on Friday and a range of conversations between Republicans and Democrats continue in the House aimed toward building support for immigration reform. The following is a statement from Rep. Luis V. Gutierrez (D-IL), the Chair of the Immigration Task Force of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus.
The speech was the best pitch for immigration reform I have heard in a long, long time. I am excited and very pleased that the President is making immigration reform his number one priority. The President clearly sees comprehensive immigration reform as an attainable goal and I agree.
There is a moral urgency to keep families together, stop the deportations, and allow immigrants to fully integrate into American society. Every day we delay action is another 1,000 immigrants deported, hundreds of parents of U.S. citizens deported, and hundreds of thousands of young immigrants unable to fully achieve their dreams.
Enough talk from Congress. We have talked about immigration reform for a decade or more; now is the time for lawmakers in both parties to come out of the shadows and work with the President in a bipartisan way to get something done.
The young DREAM Act student the President recognized should be in our mind's eye throughout the legislative process, but so should his parents, siblings, neighbors, and immigrants coming in the future. We can put immigration on a legal footing and accomplish a great achievement for the American people. The voters spoke in November and now we have to get it done.