Throughout the last few weeks, three prominent Republican and three Democratic senators have been working on an immigration plan. President Obama is set to push for immigration reform in a speech he will be giving in Las Vegas on Tuesday. One of the senators working on the plan is Republican John McCain of Arizona, who came out saying that there was still a lot of hard work that has to be made with the plan, but progress is being made and the principles of the plan will be made known within the next week.
McCain compared the plan to the 2007 immigration proposal that died under George W. Bush’s presidency. “That plan included a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants, tighter borders, a guest worker program and requirements for employers to verify workers’ immigration status. “During Obama’s first term the plan was set aside because of the economic downturn which weighed more heavily at the time. Because the president had an overwhelming support from Hispanic voters during the past election, the President swore it would be part of the agenda during his second term. McCain says that the political aspect of immigration reform should be able to sway any Republicans who object to a pathway to citizenship or undocumented immigrants. “We are losing dramatically the Hispanic vote, which we think should be ours, for a variety of reasons, and we’ve got to understand that,” he said.
McCain is a proponent of immigration reform and believes it is necessary because it’s impossible to go on with 11 million people living in this country in the shadows in an illegal status. It is impossible to forever have children who were born in the U.S. or were brought to the U.S. by their parents as small children and force them to live in the shadows. Dick Durbin, an Illinois Democrat who is also part of the group says that the progress is encouraging. “We are trying work our way through some very difficult issues but we are committed to a comprehensive approach to finally in this country having an immigration law that we can live with,” he said. “We have virtually been going for maybe 25 years without a clear statement about immigration policy. That’s unacceptable in this nation of immigrants.”
The set of politicians working together on a progressive new immigration bill has been encouraging for Congress and has helped show Americans the seriousness of the president’s promise to change the current system. Many legislators speaking with those in the group come out with a positive outlook and a “very optimistic” outlook about reform.
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