The latest push for action on immigration reform comes from an unexpected source – former Republican Speaker Dennis Hastert (R-IL). His op-ed in POLITICO urges his Republican colleagues to take action on the issue, which would benefit the economy and national security:
“The Senate bill, which passed last year with the support of both senators from my home state, Illinois, provides more money for border security, allows immigrants already here to work, expands visa programs and establishes an arduous 13-year path to citizenship.”
“The House will act in its own way, as it should. But it should act soon. Immigration reform will make our economy stronger and our country more secure.”
“The whole formula for immigration reform can fall into place if two basic issues are solved. First, securing our borders so we know who is entering our country and for what purpose. Second, a legalization of those folks who are already here, many of whom have been here for a decade or more. In addition, we should provide them with a path to citizenship much like any other immigrant would have. Those two things being satisfied, I believe immigration reform can move forward.”
“Immigration reform is necessary for our economic recovery. It is also critical to our national security, an issue on which we’ve made great strides since 9/11.”
“Nearly two-thirds of all undocumented immigrants in the country have been living and working in the states for more than a decade, according to a poll conducted by Latino Decisions. We need a reasonable way to bring them out of the shadows so that they can legally contribute to our economy. Removing them is neither practical nor economically smart.”
“Immigration reform will make us safer. It will make us economically stronger. It is politically smart and morally right.”
Let’s hope House Republicans will actually take his advice.