WASHINGTON – President Obama will unveil his proposals for comprehensive immigration reform Tuesday in Las Vegas, the White House announced today.
The White House announcement said the proposal will involve legislation to create a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants. The President, according to reports, told members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus at a meeting today that immigration reform is a top priority for his second term.
One of the lawmakers who met with the President today was House Democratic Caucus Chair Xavier Becerra, D-Calif., who said, after the meeting, “The President expressed a great sense of urgency that comprehensive immigration reform, including an earned path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants, is his top legislative priority.”
It is believed the president’s plan is modeled on one developed by Hispanic lawmakers. Their plan calls for a pathway to permanent residency and eventual citizenship for the undocumented, new work visas for skilled professionals and the establishment of an employment verification system.
Republicans are under increasing pressure to drop their hard line anti-immigrant positions after an election that saw Latinos vote overwhelmingly for President Obama.
Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush today argued that his party should embrace reform.
“In some conservative circles, the word ‘comprehensive’ in the context of immigration reform is an epithet – a code word for amnesty,” said Bush. “People who oppose such reform declare that securing the United States border must come before moving toward broader reform. Such an approach is short-sighted and self-defeating.”
Photo: Nick Ut/AP Photo