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Jul-01-2010 17:18printcomments

President Says Immigration Reform Being Held Hostage by Politics

Calls for passage of comprehensive reform and for Republican Leadership to stop obstruction.

President Obama
President Obama photo: CAUSA

(SALEM, Ore.) - In a speech at American University today, President Obama reiterated the urgent need to fix our broken immigration system through comprehensive immigration reform. The following is a statement by Francisco Lopez, Executive Director of CAUSA.

"This morning, the President gave a public speech on immigration. The speech reflected what Americans already know: the need for comprehensive immigration reform is urgent.

During his speech, he pointed out the bogus and stale rhetoric of "border security first" proponents, the demonization of immigrants, obstructionism by Republican Leadership and the idea that we cannot ever achieve comprehensive reform because it's an election year.

President Obama reiterated his administration's commitment to comprehensive immigration reform legislation that provides a path to citizenship for the millions of immigrant working families. He also called for a comprehensive fix that would secure the border, crack down on illegal hiring, and require illegal immigrants to register, pay a fine and taxes, go through background checks, and study English, in order to apply for legal status and eventually citizenship. Now we need to see action that backs up those words.

Americans need to see that the administration is serious in tackling this tough and important issue, and is willing to assert federal authority to create order out of the chaos. The current immigration system has left states like Arizona and others to take matters into their own hands. We cannot have a patchwork of 50 different immigration laws for 50 different states. Our broken system is a national crisis that requires strong and relentless presidential leadership and bold action from the United States Congress.

Our country desperately needs an immigration system that works. Close to a thousand families are being torn apart every single day by a broken and inhumane system. Senators and members of Congress must stop playing political games with the lives of families and pass comprehensive reform legislation."

The Reform Immigration FOR America campaign is a coalition of more than 600 faith, labor, business, progressive, and immigration reform groups that have joined together to get comprehensive immigration reform passed. For more information please visit or

Transcript of the President's full remarks:

Source: CAUSA, Oregon's Immigrant Rights Coalition, a member of the Reform Immigration FOR America coalition, is the largest Latino and Latina civil and human rights and advocacy organization in the Pacific Northwest.

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July 1, 2010 8:51 pm (Pacific time)

I kinda wanted to say the same thing Tracy, but been fighting against the lies and deception for so long,/I am getting tired. Which is exactly their goal. Wear us down with legislation after legislation until we cant even think for ourselves anymore.

Vic July 4, 2010 7:18 am (Pacific time)

Howdy Henry ! This is what we could get from the govt down here, even though we are not citizens: Free health care if we have no money, free garbage service six days a week, half our electric bill paid during the summer, we got our dog spayed and vaccinated for free, we could get food packages if we needed to from the Nayarit (state) govt, if we brek down while driving we get free roadside assistance, including mechanic work from The Green Angels, men in pick-up trucks carrying tools, water, gaoline and oil. We broke down in 2008 and within 15 minutes, an Angels Verde truck with two guys showed up, took out our stuck thermostat and filled out radiator back up...for free. Democracy is alive and well obnoxious person can actually be voted out of a neighborhood, if all the other residents sign a petition. I havent gotten sick from the food here, but did catch Dengue Fever (from mosquitos). I could have gone to the clinics here for free if I needed do I know this? The health dept came around door-to-door checking for cases of Dengue. They also have a "Dengue Squad" that goes around draining stagnant water and spraying, but only with the residents permission. Also here in San Blas, the city govt has a free haircut program...anyone who wants a free haircut just walks in. On Fathers Day, the city held a free dinner for dads...same on Mother's Day for mothers. Pregnant? There is pre-natal care and vitamins available for free also. And Henry, how did that vote for change thing work out with "end the wars Obama" ? Looks to me and the rest of the world that American got duped AGAIN..more war, more military spending, more drone attacks and more dead civilians than under Bush. Is that what you voted for? Know how many military bases Mexico has on other countries? Zero. Countries under Mexican occupation? Zero. Did you get to vote on the bank bail-outs? How about the war funding bill? Democracy is as democracy does...I dont see too much democracy up there. I see a lot of apathy and willful ignorance that allows the thieves, special interests, weapons manufacturers and foreign lobbyists to thrive and bleed the life out of the country. And most Americans are more interested in Paris Hilton's drug arrest or the "hot" Russian spy than they are in restoring the country and clearing out the vermin that have comandeered it. Good Luck!

Hank Ruark July 3, 2010 4:26 pm (Pacific time)

Vic: Have you considered what the average Mexican gets from his "lower-cost" govt. ? As compared with what we get, and you got when making signs in Salem ? Then, too, IF we don't like what we get, we can damned well change it by CHOICE and VOTE ! Do it really worklikethat down there,now ? OR does one have to clearitiwith ?? or get .45-slugs/flying ?? Re restaurant supervision, I had wild experience in Chicago with dirty/spoon/spot, leading to food/poisoning, hospital- visit (with NO insurance !) and week off-work...right at national/conv. time for more clients, too... !! How re Mexico on this one ? Perhaps I'm biased,but do believe gov't. has some very legitimate roles,one being,for sure, protection of public health. You had anytummytime yet downthere ? Friends tell me it is unavoidable... You gonnamakemoresigns down there ? We need allastrengths we can get right at home...

Vic July 3, 2010 6:52 am (Pacific time)

Good point anon re business costs and expenses. Here in Mexico the fee for one year to operate a business is $30. Want to open a restaurant? $30. Want to start a sign business? $30. How about a clothing store? $30....for one year. The US needs to lighten up and encourage, not discourage small business. People say "Well what about food/restaurant inspections and all that?" ..this is where the concept of anarchy kicks in.. A restaurant that serves bad food is not going to last long...word of mouth will make or break it. No inspectors or fines will change that..the entrepreneurs of America are being muzzled and taxed/fee-d out of business or discouraged from even starting. When I was making signs in Salem, the fee to the city for a sign permit was often more than the sign itself cost. A $45 "No Parking" sign required a $110 permit from the city of Salem... If a customer wanted four "No Parking" signs, the ciy of Salem charged $110 for each sign...Freakin pirates!!

Natalie July 3, 2010 12:48 am (Pacific time)

Anon: What's your opinion re tricks with hidden images of 9/11 attack on US money? Something like this I prefer the next one though And can I call you Alex Jones? I have serious doubts that you're just a very loyal friend of A.J.

Anonymous July 2, 2010 12:04 pm (Pacific time)

Vic: the corporations could not get away with it, if the federal government would not have given them an open door. Same with BP. The corporations pay off the politicians. Have you seen the amount BP and Goldman Sachs contributed to obama? If you research, you will see this was all planned. Many, many years ago, the elite plan (I have read their text, and unclassified government documents), was to have a north american union, same as the EU. Their plan was to also bring down the U.S. to a third world country, to balance their NWO agenda. It is weird, 10 years ago, warning people about it, and now actually seeing it. Warning is one thing, actually seeing it is surreal. I, yet again, strongly urge people to view Alex Jones documentaries. They are all free on google/youtube. These documentaries seemed a bit out there when made, but now make total sense. View the documentary "endgame" and 'the obama deception" by alex jones.

Anonymous July 2, 2010 11:00 am (Pacific time)

Vic really great analogy for something I'm sure. If you want to know why jobs are moving overseas, start looking at it first from a micro-level. For example California (and other states) are just bleeding jobs as businesses are leaving. Why? Look at the increasing taxes and other business related costs. Same thing on the macro (national) level. As far as "racism" being a factor, it appears segments of all races want the borders secured first before anything else is done, but opinions and feelings are going to be quite varied no doubt. Fact is that the majority want our laws enforced, so if Obama thinks he can get the votes, well I just don't think he's that stupid, so in my opinion he's just acting out politically on this immigration matter. Maybe after the next election we'll see some movement in this area, but it will be focused on our borders, and maybe a more liberal guest worker program that will include bio-metric ID's.

Vic July 2, 2010 7:36 am (Pacific time)

Good analogy, Beryl. Here is another one...The US in a boat..there is a hole the size of a bowling ball in the front of it, but the captain and the crew are working and stressing on anothr hole in the back of the boat that is the size of a quarter, while ignoring the huge hole in the front. The real problem here is the American companies moving their factories and the good paying jobs they provided overseas or across the border. Just last week Whirlpool announced that they were moving their Evansville, Indiana washing machine and refridgerator plant across the border, resulting in the loss of 1100 American jobs.,%20End%201,100%20Jobs These were jobs that supported families and provided health coverage and retirment benefits. Where is the outrage? Why is everyone ready to kill over poor people trying to better their lives, yet a multi-billion dollar company, run by white millionaires can slap American workers in the face, remove their jobs, kick em to the curb, and there is not a peep from anyone. Now they are paying an average of $2.34 an hour and shipping their products back to the US. I for one, will boycott any company that does this. In Mexico, companies that do this pay such high tariffs to get their foreign-made merchandise back to Mexico that it is economically unreasonable. Why doesnt the US government do this? Why arent people picketing outside of these companies headquarters? I think about half the people who complain about Americans losing jobs are sincere, and the other half are just straight up racists that dont really care about the jobs, but who want to live in a white world and do not like having to look at brown people. Otherwise, companies like El Whirlpool would be getting a lot of flak...and they are not.

Douglas Benson July 2, 2010 5:50 am (Pacific time)

NO AMNESTY! This is not coming from any one party .The people have spoken ,the majority want swift deportation and enforcement .Period. Peace

Tracie July 1, 2010 6:42 pm (Pacific time)

In America we have this pesky thing, at least a small minority considers it pesky, called a "representative" government. The people for over ten years now have made it clear that we do not want amnesty and that all people working must have proof they are here legally. The politics being played are by those who know that there is not enough votes to pass anything in this area until the border has been made secure. This is Obama playing to his base prior to November's election. Maybe if he attended to his elected responsibilities instead of his 24/7 campaign mode we could help our fellow Americans who desperately need it.

Anonymous July 1, 2010 6:33 pm (Pacific time)

I say..just make everyone legal, keep the borders open, and lets party!

Beryl Pryce July 1, 2010 6:20 pm (Pacific time)

A couple weeks ago I went to a beach home that's been in our family for several generations. The recent rainstorm at that time had caused some roof damage and the resulting water leak caused paint, carpet and furniture damage. So I could have repainted, put in new carpet and replaced the furniture right away, but I figured it would be a much better idea to fix the leak first, because no doubt much more rain would be coming. So regarding illegal immigration, what to do first, fix the porous leaky border, or just allow for an amnesty for all those currently here? In 1986 an amnesty was granted with the proviso that the border would be sealed. How did that work out? Considering the current state of the economy and the increasing demands on our resources, any amnesty program would result in a mass migration of illegals. I'm sure America's enemies would be very helpful helping illegals from around the world sneak in. So if you think that the current government can fix this problem with our borders and illegals, how they doing with the economy and private job creation? Remember that 2,000 plus page stimulus bill that had to pass right away so we would keep unemployment below 8%? Seal the border, then let's deal with immigration reform.

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