The Week Ahead: Jan. 22-26

Communications Assistant

January 22, 2018


“Without the quick action of our legislators, 3,062 Dreamers who have been lifelong Kentucky citizens, will be forced out of the only home they have ever known. These Dreamers are not just our friends and neighbors; they are our coworkers and local business owners. They are future innovators and students at our universities.”

   – Dave Adkisson, President and CEO of the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce, Jan. 18


Senate Reaches Temporary Spending Agreement

The Senate passed a temporary spending bill this afternoon. With final passage in Congress, the government shutdown that began Friday night will end and the government will be funded through Feb. 8.

President Trump initially supported proposed legislation that would protect Dreamers, but immigration hard-liners blocked it, demanding ramped-up immigration enforcement and slashes to legal immigration in exchange. The stalemate led to the shutdown.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) has vowed to advance immigration negotiations, giving members of Congress 17 days to develop a solution for Dreamers that will only be possible if Republican leaders distance themselves from the extreme fringe of their party.

New Ad Campaign Urges Solution for Dreamers

The National Immigration Forum Action Fund launched a six-figure digital ad campaign last week pressing members of Congress to pass legislation protecting Dreamers.

America is Better with Immigrants” highlights Dreamers and members of their communities speaking on the importance of a legislative solution not just to Dreamers but to the communities where they work and live. Ads launched in Arizona, Iowa, North Carolina, South Carolina and Washington, with Texas to follow this week. A companion op-ed by Chief Mike Tupper of Marshalltown, Iowa, ran in the Des Moines Register.

The campaign includes social media as well as local television, local radio, and local newspapers’ websites. Watch the ads here.


Summary of immigration legislation introduced and government reports on immigration:


PEW RESEARCH (Blog Post): Public backs legal status for immigrants brought to U.S. illegally as children, but not a bigger border wall
By Alec Tyson
Jan. 19, 2018

The American public has clear-cut opinions on both issues at the center of the current debate on immigration policy. A large majority (74%) favors granting permanent legal status to immigrants brought to the U.S. illegally when they were children, but 60% oppose a proposal to “substantially expand the wall along the U.S. border with Mexico” – a longtime goal of President Donald Trump.
When the two policies are taken together, 54% of Americans both favor granting permanent legal status to immigrants who came to the U.S. illegally as children andoppose greatly expanding the wall along the U.S.-Mexico border, according to a new Pew Research Center survey conducted Jan. 10-15.
There are substantial partisan differences in opinions about both policies: About nine-in-ten (92%) Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents say immigrants brought to the U.S. illegally as children should be granted permanent legal status. Republicans and Republican leaners favor this approach as well, though by a much more modest margin: 50% support this, while 40% are opposed.

Read more:

BOSTON GLOBE (Noorani Op-Ed): Immigration: The Gap We Need to Bridge
By Ali Noorani
Jan. 18, 2018

From the moment he came down the escalator in June 2015, to his administration’s year-one policy decisions, President Trump has built a case that immigrants and refugees are economic and security threats to American families.
While there are concrete opportunities for him to change his ways, the president is leading the nation down a slippery slope of economic and cultural isolation.
The question is, how do we reverse this troubling trajectory?
By meeting people where they are, but not leaving them there.
Over the last seven years, by working with conservative and moderate faith, law enforcement, and business leaders across the country, both conservative and moderate, I have gained a deeper appreciation for how conservative America grapples with the question of immigration.

Read more:

INDY STAR (Lyon and Munoz Op-Ed): Senators, Find a Solution to Keep Dreamers Here
By Jo Anne Lyon and Anna Munoz
Jan. 18, 2018

Congressional wrangling and presidential commentary over a “DACA solution” have dominated headlines. In the midst of the news circus, though, we pray that those who represent Hoosiers in Washington will keep their focus on the people directly impacted by the termination of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. As Christians, our faith compels us to urge them to keep working for a solution consistent with biblical values.
As a denominational leader within The Wesleyan Church and a “Dreamer” who is a part of a Wesleyan congregation in Fishers, respectively, our first lens through which we view this issue is from the Bible. Scripture teaches us that each Dreamer — along with every other human person, regardless of country of origin or any other qualifier — is made in God’s image with inherent dignity as well as potential to create and contribute.

Read more:

WASHINGTON POST (Andrés Op-Ed): How the immigration debate hits a restaurant kitchen
By José Andrés
Jan. 18, 2018

Washington is the kind of city where you can learn a lot by listening to the conversations over dinner. At my restaurants, I have been lucky to join the conversation with presidents and first ladies, senators and ambassadors.
But right now, you can hear the most important conversations if you walk past the tables out front and into my kitchens. There — amid the din of knives chopping, plates clattering and chefs calling out a staccato stream of food orders — you’ll hear from people who look and sound a lot like America. English predominates, but you’ll also catch Haitian Creole, French and Spanish. Natural-born citizens and naturalized citizens like me work alongside those on temporary visas. I believe that all these voices make us stronger, more creative and courageous, less complacent and fearful.

Read more: