Disappointing Vote Deals Blow to Desperately Needed Reform
June 07, 2007
Washington, DC – Today, a procedural vote in the Senate that would have limited further debate to 30 hours for the compromise Senate immigration legislation was defeated. The following is a statement by Frank Sharry, Executive Director of the National Immigration Forum, a pro-immigrant advocacy organization in Washington.
Tonight’s vote was a huge disappointment to immigrant communities and those seeking a solution to the dysfunctional immigration system in America.
We hope the Senate Leaders of both parties want a bill in the end. We fear the result was a matter of politicians – particularly Republicans – not wanting to confront obstinate members of their own party in order to let the majority’s will – and the people’s will – prevail.
The American people are pleading for action on immigration; immigrant families are desperate for progress; decent employers want a solution that evens the playing field against unscrupulous employers; immigrant- and native-workers want their rights and livelihoods protected; and our security imperatives demand that the Senate move comprehensive immigration reform towards the finish line.
We will redouble our efforts to restore order and regulation to our chaotic and poorly regulated immigration system by getting a bill signed this year. We know specific parts of the bill need improvement as they relate to families and workers and we are committed to fighting for those improvements if given the opportunity again in the Senate and then in the House.
In the meantime, people will die on the border, be separated from their families through deportation, be unable to achieve their dreams because college is not an option for certain children without papers, and our country’s economy and security will continue to suffer to the detriment of all Americans.
We can restore the rule of law while remaining a nation welcoming to industrious immigrants from around the world. But unless our leaders have the courage to lead, the country will wait and suffer through the continued dithering and political posturing of those few who oppose reform.