On immigration the GOP chooses politics over progress

In this time of deep partisanship in Washington, there has been one issue where the President, Senator McCain, Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi, the Catholic Church, the Chamber of Commerce, numerous labor unions and many other grassroots groups were able to find common cause and work together: the McCain-Kennedy approach to comprehensive immigration reform that passed the Senate with broad bipartisan support in 2006.

Unfortunately, we've now learned that once again Republican leaders have chosen politics over progress, and have walked away from this remarkable coalition and sensible approach. In news articles that have run this morning it is clear the Senate Republicans and the White House will now offer a new bill, one that abandons the smart principles of McCain-Kennedy, and that makes clear the President's support for comprehensive immigration reform has only been a spirited set of hollow promises.

Years of work went into crafting the McCain-Kennedy approach. It has made great progress through Congress. It has a deep and broad coalition behind it. Democratic Congressional leaders in both chambers have made it clear that passing this bill this year is a very high priority (see video from our recent event with leaders from both chambers reiterating their support). The new and flawed Republican approach unravels this coalition, and has dealt a severe blow to those hoping to pass comprehensive immigration reform this year.

The Republicans lost power in 2006 because their government did not produced the results they had promised and had left many important challenges left unmet. At NDN, we believe the American people sent a clear message to Washington to stop playing politics and start focusing on solving a daunting set of 21st century challenges. On this issue of immigration reform, once again the Republicans have chosen to listen more to their partisans than the American people, and have walked away from a good and sensible bipartisan solution to a difficult national challenge.