New Day for Immigration Reform as New Administration and Congress Get to Work


As President Obama takes the oath of office on Monday and the 113th Congress gets to work, momentum for immigration reform is building among voters and leaders across the political spectrum. This week alone, business, faith and law enforcement leaders have issued clear calls for Congress and the President to make reform a reality, and a new poll shows that American voters – Republicans and Democrats alike – support a better immigration process that includes a path to citizenship.

On Monday, the Evangelical Immigration Table launched the “I Was a Stranger” immigration prayer challenge, in which pastors will invite both their congregants and their members of Congress to read a passage of Scripture relating to immigrants and immigration daily for 40 days. Then, on Thursday, U.S. Chamber of Commerce President Thomas J. Donohue and Barrett Duke of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission joined other business, law enforcement and faith leaders and named immigration reform as one of their top legislative priorities in 2013.

Congress needs to catch up with the American public on a bipartisan immigration strategy. A poll released today shows that voters overwhelmingly support far-reaching changes to create an immigration process that works over the long term (see additional information below). Nearly two-thirds, including majorities of Republicans and Democrats, believe that people without documents should have the opportunity to legalize and move toward citizenship.


“Republicans and Democrats alike need to gather around a table to develop rational immigration policy that serves the interests of every American family,” said Jeb Bush Jr., chief operating officer at Jeb Bush & Associates and Member of the Board of Directors at the National Immigration Forum. “Now it is time for our national political leaders to get the cues from the American public and move forward with responsible reform – reform that ensures our security and respects the rule of law, but also acknowledges the importance of immigrants to our economy and our communities.”

“A new day has arrived in the push for legislative reform,” said Ali Noorani, executive director of the National Immigration Forum. “Leaders in both parties know we urgently need a better immigration strategy, and they have the support of the American public. We expect Congress to advance long-term immigration solutions in 2013.”

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