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The Week Ahead: September 3-6

September 03, 2013 - Posted by Communications Intern

“We have to address [immigration reform]. It’s a moral issue … I am open to finding what I believe is morally the right thing. No law-abiding person should live in the shadows.”

— GOP Representative Steve Southerland (FL-02), during an August 30 meeting with the Miami Herald


Bibles, Badges and Business Seals an August Recess Win
As summer comes to an end, the Bibles, Badges and Business for Immigration Reform network (BBB) is making its final push of an already successful August recess in preparation for Congress members’ return to Washington.

At dozens of events across the country, House members home for August and the first week of September have received strong support for moving broad immigration reform forward this fall. During this final week, local faith, law enforcement and business leaders will push for reform at a meeting in Cincinnati and a roundtable in Centennial, Colo.

Already, BBB efforts have generated more than 300 news clips. Stay up to date at — and be on the lookout for a collection of some of the most important news hits to emerge from the August recess.

Former Secretary of Homeland Security Chertoff to Address Immigration Reform
On Sept. 10 in Raleigh, N.C., the Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC), Bibles, Badges and Business for Immigration Reform and the North Carolina Farm Bureau are hosting a discussion with former Secretary of Homeland Security Michael Chertoff, a member of the Bipartisan Policy Center’s Immigration Task Force, at the North Carolina Farm Bureau Headquarters in Raleigh. As lead negotiator in the 2007 immigration reform attempts, Secretary Chertoff has a unique perspective to bring to the current immigration reform debate. To register for the event click here.

CALENDAR: Please visit our Events page to find this week's immigration-related events.

Summary of immigration legislation introduced and government reports on immigration:

MUST READ: MIAMI HERALD: Tea partier Rep. Steve Southerland voices immigration-reform support
By Marc Caputo
August 30, 2013
Conservative tea party Congressman Steve Southerland has become the latest Republican to voice support for the concept of a pathway to citizenship for some undocumented immigrants.
“We have to address it. It’s a moral issue,” Southerland, who represents a conservative Deep South district encompassing Panama City and Tallahassee, told The Miami Herald during a Friday meeting in Miami.
Southerland’s support isn’t full-throated or guaranteed. He said he needs to see the details of actual legislation. He wants strict, real and fast border security.
But Southerland's comments are another sign that immigration reform still has a shot in the GOP-held U.S. House of Representatives, where a handful of Republicans have indicated new support for immigration reform during congress’ August recess.
During that time Miami Republican Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart has been working to persuade about a dozen in the GOP to back immigration reform, provide their input or not be too vocal in opposing it.
Southerland said he speaks frequently to Diaz-Balart. But he gave a big amount of credit for his views on immigration reform to a college graduate named Juan Espinoza, who spoke up at a Tallahassee town hall this month.
Brought to this country when he was four, Espinoza told Southerland that he has two college degrees and wants to stay in the country he was raised in, but he’s not a citizen nor is he here illegally.
Read more:

GANNETT: Evangelicals air pro-immigration ads targeting lawmakers in 14 states, including Alabama
GANNETT: Evangelicals air pro-immigration ads targeting lawmakers in 14 states, including Alabama
By Mary Orndorff Troyan, Gannett Washington Bureau
August 31, 2013
WASHINGTON — A national coalition of evangelicals supporting a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants has been targeting the Birmingham-area district of Rep. Spencer Bachus as part of a national radio campaign that started last week in 14 states.
The Evangelical Immigration Table is spending $400,000 on radio ads on Christian and talk radio stations in 56 congressional districts to support immigration legislation that would secure the border, keep immigrant families together and give some of those in the country illegally a chance to earn citizenship.
The ads are playing while lawmakers are in their districts during the final weeks of Congress’ summer recess, which ends Sept. 9.
“They will return to Washington knowing they have support at home for taking action on reform,” said Barrett Duke, vice president for public policy and research with the Southern Baptist Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission.
Organizers said the 56 Republican districts were chosen because those members are on committees that play a key role in the immigration debate, or they have a strong evangelical community. Both would be true of Alabama’s 6th congressional district.
The district includes Birmingham’s suburbs and some of the city’s largest and most influential churches.
In addition, Bachus, R-Vestavia Hills, is a member of the House Judiciary Committee, where the GOP is hashing out immigration legislation.
Bachus is already receptive to the evangelical campaign. The veteran lawmaker — who did not favor Alabama’s tough immigration law — supports a path to citizenship for those who have earned it.
“I don’t think we ought to have two classes of long-term residents,” Bachus said recently on Capitol Hill.
Read more:

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