6.30.2007

Now We're All Responsible for Fixing Immigration

GOP Chairman Mel Martinez blasted Democrats and Republicans who helped kill the so-called comprehensive immigration reform proposal. Calling them the "voices of negativity", Martinez said they now have a responsibility to come up with a solution beyond "just build a fence along the border."

How will you fix the situation to make peoples' lives better? How will you continue to grow the economy? How will we bring people out of the shadows for our national security and for the sake of being a country that is just?
At a meeting of latino elected officials in Orlando, Martinez warned local and state offocials that the immigration issue will now land in their laps through local ordinances.

We're going to have a hodgepodge of local laws. We will have cities that will declare themselves sanctuary cities. And then we will have others that will make it a felony simply to rent to illegal immigrants.
What's clear is that nobody's off the hook with the defeat of immigration reform. If anything, defeat of the President's gives neither party a pass on the issue. Candidates for federal office--Congress and the White House--will not be able to duck the issue or hide the anti-immigrant lobby.

Clearly, it takes a coalition building, political management and bold political leadership to get something as important and potentially transformative as immigration reform done. Given this week's immigration reform fiasco, the pro-immigration needs to up it's game both at the local as well as at the national levels.

Chairman slams immigration bill opponents, challenges them to act (by Laura Wides-Munoz - 6.29.07)
National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials