Stephanie Young, 202-225-3130
WASHINGTON, DC - House Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) released the following statement today after signing a discharge petition that would force the House Republican leadership to allow a vote on H.R. 15, bipartisan comprehensive immigration reform legislation:
“I was proud to sign a petition today that would force a vote on H.R. 15, a bipartisan bill to fix our broken immigration system. Right now, under that system, we lose talented individuals who are forced to return home after earning an advanced degree here in the United States instead of making a new home here, as part of our workforce. Families are torn apart, and people who want to pursue the American dream and contribute to strengthening our nation and its economy are denied the opportunity to do so.
“Congress has a responsibility to act. If we do so, it will not only be the morally right thing to do, it will also boost our economy and improve our nation’s fiscal outlook. Yesterday, the Congressional Budget Office estimated that comprehensive immigration reform would reduce the deficit by $900 billion over the next twenty years, including $200 billion in the first decade alone.
“Support for comprehensive immigration reform reaches across all sectors of American life, from businesses, labor organizations, farmers, agricultural workers, faith communities, the Chamber of Commerce, and a wide majority of the American public. A recent Gallup poll indicated that more than 70% of Americans want Congress to reform our immigration system. Even House Republicans agree that our current system is terribly broken, which is why a bipartisan group of 200 House Members have added their names as cosponsors to H.R. 15.
“The Senate acted on a bipartisan basis nearly a year ago, and the House must follow suit. I hope Members from both parties will sign this petition so we can force the House to act without further delay.”