A Summary of Our Case for CIR

Fixing our Broken Immigration System

A Summary of Our Case for CIR

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A SUMMARY OF OUR CASE FOR CIR

 

I.  Our Position

  1. Strengthen border security.
  2. Set up an employment verification plan that provides employers with security while avoiding undue and costly burdens on employers.
  3. Establish serious criminal penalties for employers that hire illegal workers.
  4. Modify existing visa programs and create new legal channels that control the flow of future immigrants, while allowing employers access to the workers they need under just working conditions.
  5. Substantially increase the number of family visas available for the immediate relatives of legal immigrants,
  6. Grant illegal immigrants conditional legal status and provide then a path to permanent residency and citizenship if they meet certain requirements

II. Public Opinion

1.      The country expects the broken immigration system to be fixed, and wants citizenship for undocumenteds to be part of it, as polling over the last 3 years shows.

2.      A comfortable majority of voters believe "fixing" the problem, as opposed to "addressing" it or "exacerbating" it means requiring a faster path to citizenship.

3.      Hispanics have every right to believe Democrats will pass CIR this year, and they will be disappointed if they don't.  And all voters expect Congress to solve tough issues to get the country "back on track", and unlike less known issues like SCHIP, equal pay, etc., immigration is one of the top four or five voters list, consistently.

4.      The new political landscape in Congress and the bipartisan support enjoyed by immigration makes it the right thing to do not just for policy, but politically as well.

II. Economics - Immigration Reform Will Help Revive Our Economy

1.      The key issue of our day is raising the standard of living for every day working Americans.  Among other strategies, the Democrats deployed tackling raising the minimum wage.

2.      But this effort to raise the income floor of all workers will not work as long as we leave out 5% of the American workforce - the undocumented - at a time when those 5% have few or no opportunities back "home" to do even worse devaluations and conditions there.

3.      We have to get this part of the workforce into the protection of America law, unionized, eligible for minimum wage, and raise wages for every worker.

4.      It should be a primary strategy for those seeking to raise the incomes of all American workers to pass CIR this year and bring all workers under the protection of American law and American wages. 

IV. 21st Century America Demands Reform

1.      Our President, Barack Obama, ran and won a Presidential campaign through is call saying "We Are One."  At the core of the new politics of this new era is a call to put aside the divisive racial politics of the past.

2.      In many ways the most virulent manifestation of racial intolerance being exhibited in America today is toward immigrants, Hispanics, Asians, Middle-Eastern - to keep true to President Obama's pledge, and all of us must do everything in our power to bring the demonization of immigrants - by both Democrats and Republicans - to an end, by passing immigration reform. 

3.      Finally, that the debate over SCHIP, the Stimulus, health care and the Census has immediately become a debate about immigration should be a clear warning to the Administration and Congress that progress on many important domestic priorities this year may get caught up in the debate on how to best fix our broken immigration system. It is our belief that rather than having a series of tough and contentious proxy fights on immigration, our leaders should recognize that passing comprehensive immigration reform this year will not only help fix our badly broken immigration system - a priority of many Americans - but may also be the key to unlocking bipartisan progress on a whole range of other domestic and security related issues.