Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva today hailed the Senate's historic 68-32 vote to approve a comprehensive immigration reform package and urged Speaker of the House John Boehner to bring a truly bipartisan House bill to the floor for a vote. While he said he had reservations about parts of the Senate bill, he believes the process has to be allowed to move forward rather than held up for purely partisan reasons.
"This is a time to move together on a bipartisan basis and really do the people's business," Grijalva said. "Speaker Boehner can show some leadership or keep playing the same political games that have Congress' approval rating at a historic low. The American people are watching every step of this process very closely, and the next step is letting the House take a vote. Hiding and making excuses are not on the table."
Grijalva said he was disappointed in the Corker-Hoeven amendment, passed by the Senate earlier this week, that will lead to overspending on ineffective border security measures.
"The amendment is a classic case of excess, overreach, overreaction, and wasting taxpayer money, and I reject the idea that it's the only way to make this country safe," Grijalva said. "The American people deserve a real debate about the merits of this militarize-the-border approach, because after years of trying it, we don't have much to show for it.
"We need to start hiring more officers at ports of entry to increase cross-border commerce and create jobs. We need to start considering the impacts our current law enforcement approaches are having on border communities. We've been treating immigration reform as a pure "lack of resources' question for political reasons long enough. Let's look at the real issues at stake for a change. Speaker Boehner can take that important step any time he chooses."