Advertisement

You will be redirected to the page you want to view in  seconds.

Another view: Seize opportunity for immigration reform

7:54 PM, Nov. 15, 2012  |  Comments
  • Filed Under

So many great opportunities have come and gone to attain real progress on comprehensive immigration reform. President George W. Bush, a staunch reform supporter, spent significant political capital to advance a package in Congress in 2007. Despite bipartisan support in both houses, Bush's effort failed.

President Barack Obama also failed in his first term, despite having a Democratic majority in both houses during his first two years. Many would argue that he really didn't even try.

One thing is clear from last week's national election: Hispanics now play a swing role in national politics, and politicians who ignore that fact do so at their own peril.

GOP leaders are wasting no time in softening their party's message about comprehensive immigration reform and calling an end to mean-mouthed, anti-immigrant rhetoric.

"It's just time to get the job done. ? What I'm talking about is a common-sense, step-by-step approach to secure our borders, allow us to enforce the laws and fix a broken immigration system," House Speaker John Boehner said last week.

A growing chorus of conservatives is declaring its willingness to make this happen, even though tea party stalwarts will no doubt stomp their feet and insist that no deal occur until the U.S.-Mexico border is secure.

That is not the only potential roadblock. Boehner made clear that a deal won't happen unless the president leads, and he's right. Obama cannot continue to relegate this to backburner status.

Reform is not a slam dunk on the Democratic side, however. Entrenched interests linked to organized labor have long been leery of immigration measures that could threaten hard-fought gains on the minimum wage. Some of those same labor interests were instrumental, particularly in Ohio, in handing Obama his victory Nov. 6 . Do Democrats dare risk alienating those voters to address immigration?

Both parties have something to lose and something to gain. But they must stop viewing immigration reform as a political calculation and start viewing it for what it is: the right thing to do.

The Dallas Morning News favors a comprehensive package that includes improved border security and an expanded guest-worker program that allows U.S. businesses to fill short-term vacancies in low-skilled jobs such as farm harvesting and restaurant work - jobs that American workers have shown little interest in filling.

It favors strict workplace enforcement to ensure that U.S. jobs go only to those who immigrate legally. There must also be a strong incentive to encourage the estimated 12 million immigrants residing here illegally to emerge from the shadows. That incentive is a tough but fair pathway to legalization.

The time is now for action, not excuses. Both parties must instill discipline, silence the naysayers and make comprehensive immigration reform a reality.

What's your take on the Packers Family Night change?

Retrieving results.
Watching practice is fine.(Your vote)
15%
573 votes
I'd rather watch a scrimmage.(Your vote)
23%
856 votes
I don't want to pay to watch practice.(Your vote)
27%
1013 votes
It doesn't matter to me.(Your vote)
34%
1271 votes

Catch up on the latest in our pregame show every game day.

Football fans

If you've ever answered "Who has the ball?" with "It's halftime," you might recognize The Airhead. Check out the characters in our cartoon gallery of oddball fans.

Special Reports

ORDER YOURS

Football fans

If you've ever answered "Who has the ball?" with "It's halftime," you might recognize The Airhead. Check out the characters in our cartoon gallery of oddball fans.

Special Reports