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Tag Archive: Immigration reform


 

The Hill

Pelosi warns focus on deportations a ‘gift’ to Republicans

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Immigration reformers shifting their focus from Congress to the White House over deportations risk undermining efforts to pass a comprehensive reform bill this year, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) warned Thursday.

Pelosi said she supports the Congressional Hispanic Caucus’s calls for the administration to reduce deportations. But simultaneously taking pressure off of House Republicans, she added, is a “gift” to GOP leaders, allowing them to dodge a sensitive issue that could hurt them in the 2014 election.

“That’s a gift to the Republicans,” she said. “Because the fact is, the Republicans are never going to move unless they think there’s a price to play politically for not bringing the bill to the floor.”

Pelosi stressed that legislation remains the Democrats’ ultimate goal, and urged reformers to stay focused on Congress getting a bill.

“I see the pain and suffering of the deportations,” she said. “But the answer, the medicine for every ill in the deportations is to pass comprehensive immigration reform.”

Pelosi did not say that congressional Democrats or the White House should no longer consider reduced deportations. But her warning that the actions of pro-immigration groups could deliver Republicans a political benefit could raise questions about the strategy overall.

Many Democrats are calling on President Obama for reduced deportations, and Obama has asked Department of Homeland Security leaders for an across-the-board review of his deportations policies.

The move has made many critics hopeful he’ll expand the administration’s deferred action program, which allows some immigrants brought to the U.S. illegally as kids to remain in the United States temporarily, to a broader population.

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Pelosi: Race playing role in GOP’s reluctance to move immigration bill

Greg Nash

Issues of race have made GOP leaders reluctant to back immigration reform, Rep. Nancy Pelosi (Calif.) charged Thursday.

 

The Democratic leader suggested that the Republicans would have moved a reform bill long ago if whites were the only beneficiaries.”I think race has something to do with the fact that they’re not bringing up an immigration bill,” Pelosi told reporters in the Capitol. “I’ve heard them say to the Irish, ‘If it were just you, this would be easy.’ ”

The remarks came in response to a question about the often-testy relationship between congressional Republicans and the administration of President Obama, the nation’s first black president.

There’s long been grumbling among Democrats that Obama’s race has exacerbated the partisan divide between the White House and Capitol Hill Republicans, highlighted recently by a flare-up between Attorney General Eric Holder, who is black, and Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee.

Pelosi was reluctant to say that race issues have fueled those tensions, arguing more broadly that Republicans have been “very disrespectful” of White House officials regardless of their ethnicity.

 

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US Senate passes sweeping immigration reform

In a vote hailed by US President Barack Obama, the Senate passed a comprehensive immigration reform on Thursday that would help 11 million people gain citizenship, but is expected to be blocked by the Republican-controlled House of Representatives.

By Halla Mohieddeen (video)
News Wires (text)

The U.S. Senate approved a landmark immigration bill on Thursday that would provide millions of undocumented immigrants a chance to become citizens, but the leader of the House of Representatives said the measure was dead on arrival in the House.

In a rare show of bipartisanship, the Democratic-controlled Senate passed the bill by a vote of 68-32, with 14 of the Senate’s 46 Republicans joining all 52 Democrats and two independents in support of the bill.

But any air of celebration was tempered by House Speaker John Boehner, who hours before the vote emphasized that Republicans would “do our own bill,” one that “reflects the will of our majority,” many of whom oppose citizenship for immigrants who are in the United States illegally.

Any bill in the Republican-controlled House is expected to focus heavily on border security and finding immigrants who have overstayed their visas.

“Immigration reform has to be grounded in real border security,” Boehner said.

Republican divisions over immigration were evident throughout the U.S. Capitol. While Boehner was putting the brakes on the Senate bill, Republican Senator Marco Rubio of Florida, a possible 2016 presidential candidate, delivered a passionate speech urging passage of the measure that he helped write.

After recounting his parents’ difficult lives in Cuba and their struggles after immigrating to the United States, Rubio said: “For over 200 years now, they (immigrants) have come; in search of liberty and freedom, for sure. But often simply looking for jobs to feed their kids and the chance of a better life.”

At the end of the Senate debate, a packed gallery of supporters, who have labored decades for such a moment, witnessed the vote that came after three weeks of sometimes heated discussion. More than 100 children of illegal immigrants who were brought to the United States by their parents hugged each other when the bill passed.

President Barack Obama, praising the bill, said it contained tough border security requirements and “earned citizenship” for about 11 million undocumented residents.

“Today, the Senate did its job. It’s now up to the House to do the same,” Obama said in a statement.

Mexico’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement that the Senate bill “has the potential to improve the lives of millions of Mexicans living in the United States today.”

The Senate vote came after several unsuccessful attempts in the past decade or so to overhaul a U.S. immigration law enacted in 1986. The goal has been to improve an outdated visa system and help U.S. firms get easier access to foreign labor ranging from farm and construction workers to high-skilled employees.

Business and labor groups reached a deal on the new visa system, which is part of the Senate bill. But controversy raged over how much new border security was needed and how long the 11 million should wait before becoming legal residents and then citizens.

 

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CBS PHILLY

Local Advocates Watch Cautiously As Immigration Reform Heads To The US House

June 28, 2013 6:52 AM
SEIU members rally for immigration reform at LOVE Park (Credit: Molly Daly)

SEIU members rally for immigration reform at LOVE Park (Credit: Molly Daly)

Reporting Cherri Gregg

By Cherri Gregg

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The immigration reform bill sailed through the United States Senate yesterday, offering hope of citizenship to millions of undocumented immigrants across the country (see related story). Local advocates are a little nervous as the bill gears up to move into the House.

“It’s a little bit of a bitter sweet pill I think right now,” says Erika Almiron, executive director of Juntos. She says the community is happy the bill is moving forward, but afraid that if it ever passes the United States House it won’t resemble the Gang of 8 proposal originally lauded by immigration reform advocates.

“We see these concessions happening around this bill, so it just raises our concern as we move into the House,” she says.

Concessions like adding tens of billions of dollars for stepped up border security and adding more red tape to the path to citizenship. Natasha Kelemen of the Pennsylvania Immigration and Citizenship Coalition says the only recourse is to continue to push lawmakers.

 

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Harry Reid is pictured. | AP Photo

Sen. Reid said a core group of 20 senators had been working feverishly to complete it. | AP Photo

Reblogged  from :   Blavatar Freedom Is Just Another Word…

 

Harry Reid Buys Anti-gun Votes from his
“Secret Room”

This battle is ObamaCare II 

“The most annoying thing is the phone calls.” – a Senior Senate Staffer commenting on the effectiveness of thousands of phone calls pouring into their offices (June 21, 2013)
URGENT ACTION:  A key vote in the Senate will be occurring later today or tomorrow morning.  Please call your Senators at 202-224-3121 to register your opinion, and if you live in a state with two anti-gun Senators, then use the contact list below to call Senators who are on the fence. Urge your pro-gun friends and family to do the same.
Making them “An offer they can’t refuse.”
Thursday night last week was like a scene from the Godfather.One by one, senators shuffled into Harry Reid’s “secret room” in the Capitol, and each one (figuratively) kissed his ring and (again, figuratively) received his payment from Reid’s stack of bills.

And, by the end of the night, Reid had presumably bought enough votes to pass his anti-gun immigration amnesty bill.

Things haven’t changed a bit from ObamaCare.  Same secret room.  Same procession of supplicants.  Same massive secret bill, revealed at the very same moment Reid filed his motion to cut off debate.  Same morally challenged senators who were more than willing to have their votes bought.

Either later today or tomorrow morning, the Senate will vote on whether to cut off all debate on the massive amendment which didn’t exist until Friday morning.

There are two things to remember:  The liberal (and demonstrably partisan) Congressional Budget Office looked at the long fences, copious border agents, and Orwellian E-Verify in the base bill — and decided it would have little impact on illegal immigration, reducing it by only 25%.  This, in exchange for 8,000,000 new, largely anti-gun voters.

If Hoeven, Corker, and Schumer claim that their “super-secret probation” amendment (fences, agents, e-verify) will have any more of an impact, let’s get a CBO estimate of that.

Second, the one thing Schumer has consistently refused to do is to condition his 8,000,000 new Democratic voters on the statistically demonstrable success of border security.  What does that tell you?

It says this bill is more about turning this country blue than it is about securing the border.

ACTION:  Call your Senators at 202-224-3121, especially if they are listed below.  Tell them to vote against cloture on Harry Reid’s “Godfather amendment.”
NOTE:  For those of you who live in California, New York (and other states with two anti-gun Senators), you could use this opportunity to call some of the Senators on the Target List below.
Senators Up for Grabs.  According to media reports (and Senate intelligence), the following Senators are either on the fence or are leaning towards voting “yes” on the Hoeven amendment:

Biometric Database of All Adult Americans Hidden in Immigration Reform

Illustration: National Institutes of Health

The immigration reform measure the Senate began debating yesterday would create a national biometric database of virtually every adult in the U.S., in what privacy groups fear could be the first step to a ubiquitous national identification system.

Buried in the more than 800 pages of the bipartisan legislation (.pdf)  is language mandating the creation of the innocuously-named “photo tool,” a massive federal database administered by the Department of Homeland Security and containing names, ages, Social Security numbers and photographs of everyone in the country with a driver’s license or other state-issued photo ID.

Employers would be obliged to look up every new hire in the database to verify that they match their photo.

This piece of the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act is aimed at curbing employment of undocumented immigrants. But privacy advocates fear the inevitable mission creep, ending with the proof of self being required at polling places, to rent a house, buy a gun, open a bank account, acquire credit, board a plane or even attend a sporting event or log on the internet. Think of it as a government version of Foursquare, with Big Brother cataloging every check-in.

“It starts to change the relationship between the citizen and state, you do have to get permission to do things,” said Chris Calabrese, a congressional lobbyist with the American Civil Liberties Union. “More fundamentally, it could be the start of keeping a record of all things.”

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