Mr. KILMER. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to discuss the need for a bipartisan solution to our Nation's immigration challenges.
This past Saturday, I spoke at a naturalization ceremony in Tacoma, Washington, where 72 men and women from all corners of the world took their oath of allegiance to our Nation. I saw the joy on the faces of these new American brothers and sisters, including several military members who risked their lives to protect our Nation before they themselves had the rights to citizenship. Personally, the day also marked the 65th anniversary, to the day, of my grandmother's and mother's immigration to the United States from Holland.
The occasion served to remind me that we are a stronger Nation because of our Nation's diversity and the experiences that people bring here. We are indeed a Nation of immigrants, but we're also a Nation of laws. It's time to modernize those laws in a way that allows us to further secure our borders and create a feasible solution for the 11 million undocumented people here in the United States.
Improving our legal immigration system will ensure American workers receive the benefits of competing on an equal ground. It will reduce exploitation and give undocumented workers and their families a path toward achieving opportunity.
I hope we can cross party lines and pass a meaningful, comprehensive immigration reform bill.