December 31, 2013
Happy New Year!
In 2014 the U.S. House will be forced to stop their divisive games and start doing their jobs so immigration reform legislation can finally pass.
Indeed, 2014 has already been labeled the "year immigration reform will pass."
The year 2013 has been called "the year of reversal" as blue states moved to reverse the 2012 anti-immigration push of Republican states like Arizona and Alabama who passed oppressive anti-immigration laws. In 2013 California, New York, Illinois, Colorado, Connecticut, Nevada, Oregon and New Jersey passed pro-immigration laws to protect basic rights of undocumented aliens.
In 2013 the conservative Chamber of Commerce joined the push for immigration reform. In 2013, thousands of undocumented aliens came out of the shadows to lead marches, protests and stage sit-ins in Republican House members' offices.
In the last year more U.S. citizens, including Republicans, have shown support for immigration reform and a pathway to citizenship for the 11 million undocumented aliens living in the U.S.
An October 2014 poll showed that a wide majority, 71% of voters who were surveyed nationwide, said that they would support an immigration bill that included: "border security, an expanded visa program for high-skilled workers and agricultural workers, an employment verification system, a pathway to citizenship for undocumented children and legal status for immigrants in the United States illegally."
A November 2013 poll conducted by Republicans for Immigration Reform, Partnership for a new American Economy and Compete America showed that 52% were more likely to vote for a candidate who backs immigration reform and 18% said they would be "less likely." The same poll determined that 54% were less likely to vote for a candidate who opposed immigration reform, while 17% said that they were more likely.
Charles Spies, co-founder of Republicans for Immigration Reform, stated:
“Support for immigration reform is broad and especially strong among persuadable independents that Republicans need to win elections. There is no question that Republicans have significantly more risk in opposing immigration reform than they do in supporting it.”In the last months of 2013 unions and immigrations advocates have stepped up actions calling for immigration reform and promise more pressure in 2014. The Service Employees International Union (SEIU), spent over $500,000 in ads in district where Republican House members have opposed immigration reform.
Hundreds of pro-immigration reform advocates began a fast on November 12, 2013 to demand immigration reform. While attention was given to fasters who set up on the National Mall in Washington, DC, others have conducted fasts in states across America to urge House members to vote on the bill that passed the Senate in June 2013.
Fasters hopes to reach House Speaker John Boehner who has stubbornly refused to bring the bill to the floor, bowing to wishes of the minority extreme Tea Party conservatives. He paid little attention, but the fasters did get the attention of President Obama and the First Lady who visited the fasters on the mall.
The President said:
"It is not a question of whether immigration reform will pass, but how soon. The only thing standing in the way is politics, and it is the commitment to change from advocates like these brave fasters that will help pressure the House to finally act."It will be impossible to reverse the 2013 rise in momentum calling for immigration reform. Opponents of immigration reform are in the minority. Like the opponents of the civil rights movement, they are in shameful minority that is on the wrong side of history. Not only are their numbers dwindling, but they inspire immigration advocates to fight harder.
Immigration reform should pass in 2014 and when it does it will include a provision to grant the 11,000 legal, long-term nonresidents of the U.S. Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands a long overdue pathway to citizenship.
Happy New Year –2014 should be a good one!