Sunday, October 16, 2011

Partisan politics, wedge-issue campaign tactics sabotage immigration reform efforts

Rep. Luis V. Gutierrez (D-IL-4) applauded a ruling by the 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in Atlanta late last week that puts on hold parts of Alabama's controversial HB 56, the state's effort to demand papers from immigrants and otherwise make life difficult for Latinos and immigrants in Alabama. Rep. Gutierrez is the Chair of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Task Force on Immigration.

A statement by Rep. Luis V. Gutierrez:

The 11th Circuit Court of Appeals has issued an injunction and I am happy that the Obama Administration and Attorney General Eric Holder are acting to prevent some of the worst aspects of Alabama's hugely discriminatory law from being implemented.  Some people have already been prosecuted and many others have been adversely affected by the Alabama law, so the sooner it is overturned in the federal courts, the better.  Today's injunction is a step in the right direction, but unfortunately still leaves the door open for racial profiling.

Click to enlarge: Why the law needs to change!

Maybe with the 11th Circuit injunction the feverish anti-immigration exclusionism engulfing Alabama is on the path to extinction, but I offer anyone in Alabama an alternative. When Alabama was not a viable location for African-American families to raise their children back 40, 50 and 60 years ago, many came north to my city of Chicago as part of the Great Migration and revitalized and reinvented Chicago. Already, as Hispanic families are seeing no future for themselves in Alabama regardless of their immigration status or even U.S. citizenship, we are seeing some follow the same trail from Alabama to Chicago. We need all the good, hardworking, and conscientious people we can get in Chicago so Alabama's loss is our gain.

We have been fighting to pass immigration reform in Congress for a decade or more to reestablish legal immigration as an alternative to illegal immigration and to get those people already here on-the-books and in the system. It is the only way to return confidence in and law and order to our immigration system and to prevent states from enacting a hodge-podge of 50 state laws on immigration, a subject the Constitution explicitly cedes to the federal government to regulate. Unfortunately, recent efforts to reform immigration have fallen victim to partisan politics and short-sighted wedge-issue campaign tactics.

1 comment:

okjimm said...

Unfortunately partisan politics will prevent reform in any venue of our social, political or economic climate.

I wish I had an answer.