Thursday, June 28, 2007

NALEO and MALDEF Statements on Senate Vote

STATEMENT OF MALDEF PRESIDENT AND GENERAL COUNSEL JOHNTRASVIÑA ON U.S. SENATE VOTE ON IMMIGRATION REFORM

June 28, 2007 - Today, the forces of delay and divide teamed up to defeat comprehensive immigration reform legislation.  But the hopes and needs of the American people - native and newcomer alike - will not be deterred.  The status quo is simply indefensible.  Families remain at risk of being split up; businesses remain unable to hire legal workers for all their jobs; and the immigration system can not effectively devote resources to protect America's security or future.

We thank those Senators who, on a bipartisan basis, carried out their duties under the Constitution to craft immigration policy.  The remainder leaves America with neither solution nor vision.  Congress has two houses and we now call upon the House of Representatives to address, and not ignore, our immigration policies so they can serve our families, our security and our economy.                           

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NALEO CONDEMNS SENATE VOTE TO KILL COMPREHENSIVE IMMIGRATION REFORM
Nation’s Elected and Appointed Latino Officials Call on U.S House and White House
to “Finish the Job the Senate Could Not”

Orlando, FL —The National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO), the leading organization that facilitates full Latino participation in the political process, today issued the following statement in response to today’s vote in the United States Senate to kill comprehensive immigration reform:

As more than 1,000 Latino elected and appointed officials from across the country convene in the battleground state of Florida at the NALEO 24th Annual Conference, the United States Senate today killed the comprehensive immigration reform bill (S.1639) by a vote of 46 to 53, forcing millions of undocumented immigrants to continue living in the shadows.

NALEO is deeply disappointed at the Senate’s failure to fulfill the mandate of the American people to fix our broken immigration system. 

Further, our Latino elected officials from across the country, at every level of elected office, are concerned that the Senate’s failure now opens the door to more anti-immigrant, anti-Latino measures across the nation.

We now call on the United States House of Representatives and the White House to take on this issue and finish the job that the Senate did not.  We strongly reject the notion that the Senate’s failure today means immigration reform is dead. 

NALEO has adopted principles on comprehensive immigration reform [click here] that provide a road map to the work that needs to be done, including the need for a path to U.S. citizenship for those immigrants who have played by the rules and are contributing to our society. 

We also envision a system which promotes family reunification and reduces immigration backlogs; provides a meaningful opportunity for immigrant students to pursue a college education; protects our national security with effective and fair enforcement measures; and promotes the civic integration of newcomers. 

We urge the President and the House of Representatives to work toward those principles for true comprehensive immigration reform.

bh

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