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Obama Committed to the 'Heavy Lifting' on Immigration, Lawmakers Say

By Michael A. Fletcher
A bipartisan group of lawmakers emerged from a White House meeting with President Obama today confident that the president is ready to put his political weight behind an comprehensive overhaul of the nation's immigration laws.

"I don't think he could have be clearer today or more committed today that he wanted to make comprehensive immigration reform a reality," said Rep. Luis V. Gutierrez (D-Ill.), who had previously expressed disappointment with Obama's commitment to the issue.
"He led today. He was the president of the United States and he led today."

Obama and members of his administration met with the members of Congress to begin mapping a plan to build support for an immigration reform measure that the president has said he would like to pass "later this year or early next year," according to a senior White House official.

Speaking to reporters after the meeting, Obama said he was committed to push reform, even though similar efforts failed during the presidency of George W. Bush and sharp differences separate members of Congress when it comes to immigration reform, particularly as the economy continues to struggle.

"It's going to require some heavy lifting," Obama said. "It's going to require a victory of practicality and common sense and good policymaking over short-term politics. That's what I'm committed to doing as president."

Obama said that Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano would join congressional leaders to form a working group on immigration reform to begin building toward a bill to better control the borders and create a legal status for the estimated 12 million undocumented workers now in the country.

"There is not by any means consensus across the table," said Obama, who described the issue as "sensitive and politically volatile."

Just hours before the president met with about 30 lawmakers, Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel asserted that Obama and his allies on Capitol Hill do not have the votes to pass a comprehensive reform bill. "If the votes were there, you wouldn't need to have the meeting. You could go to a roll call," Emanuel told reporters during an hour-long breakfast.

Emanuel's assessment follows that of other White House officials, who have been telegraphing for weeks the legislative challenge that immigration reform presents. Press secretary Robert Gibbs made the point at a briefing last week. And Rep. Gutierrez echoed the sentiment recently.

"With this issue, it's 'Do we have the votes?' Hell, if we had the votes, we wouldn't be calling you," Gutierrez told the Wall Street Journal, referring to conversations he had with administration officials.

But a senior aide to Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.) disputed the dire predictions. "The Senate passed a comprehensive immigration reform bill by a filibuster-proof margin and with strong bipartisan support in 2006, and we can do it again," spokesman Jim Manley said. "The White House should leave the vote counting to us."

By Web Politics Editor  |  June 25, 2009; 6:57 PM ET
Categories:  Capitol Briefing  
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Comments

Looking at JUST the administration people who represented me.. I can tell you unequivocally, they probably don't represent anything I stand for.

The Administration is trying to thug us. Look at the statement issued by Senator Schumar and he promises to bring E-Verify in if his solution is excepted.. and per the Senator, it had better be accepted. Ummmm... again.

But then this...
http://www.dailykos.com/story/2009/6/29/748188/-After-The-Immigration-Meeting

There has been limited mention that if an error appears when a new hires is run through E-Verify. They can then challenge the discrepancy by taking their identification documents to the Social Security Administration to be cleared. Very seldom this happens because E-Verification has a 99.5 success rate and this computer based national identification program is being upgraded continuously for the workplace. This type of information remains undisclosed by the special interest lobby that caters especially to the businesses and remains silent about where to get problems resolved.

I believe it is correct. Oh dear.. Obama and Senator Schuman lied to us.

Posted by: joelwisch | July 1, 2009 9:54 AM | Report abuse

This is not rocket science. Until the border fence is completed and the flow of illegal aliens stopped no amnesty should be discussed.

Pass and enforce E-Verify.

Pass HR 1868 to end the so called anchor baby issue.

Staff an agency that can issue the required number of work visas every year.

Posted by: Bubbette1 | June 29, 2009 4:37 PM | Report abuse

everything wath is said in this article may be some how rigth,
however the amnisty,
"Garbage of documentation to work,
pardon to live working,?the garbage of politicians,should give the amnisty,when we fix the economy pay our debts,collect taxes not paid by employers and employees
on every state,when we have investigated wrong doings,of courts,police & jail departaments,educaction departments and so on..amnisty should be fixed before given
paers..wuth money for the thiefts.. when the new census will done on 2110,when to vote will a mandatory duty of our civilized citizens in the most perfect democracy,
,when a candiate don't have to by votes?
when re-educate our country,when we have a plan to rebuild our land,when no body will live in danger,when we wait very happy for a new baby's,when our grave will be waiting to rest in full boby to go to our heaven.
when we kill the communist presnce in our country!

Atte
Juan Carlos Tello
next
Governor of the 51th Ecuador USA

Posted by: JCTPOST | June 29, 2009 1:33 AM | Report abuse

joelwisch,

Did you see this guys article about the funding of the government front organization, "The Race".

The Federal Government is allowing groups like La Raza access to our money before we are even able to pick up our paychecks and cash them. We are left little to support what we really want it to go for.

It is totally against the principals of the United States of America when you turn a machine like the criminals in the government have against the will of the people.

Here is a partial list of some of the money that has been looted from the American taxpayer. Look down at the end of the article.

http://www.americanchronicle.com/articles/viewArticle.asp?articleID=25447

A new La Raza funding bill. Another 5 to 10 million for one of their groups! And you've gotta just know other tax money is going to other race groups.

http://www.govtrack.us/congress/billtext.xpd?bill=h110-1999

Posted by: Stokeybob | June 27, 2009 7:14 PM | Report abuse

Did you ever wonder where the money for things like the subversion of the world's immigration laws may come from?

It seems to me as long as we allow people to print up fiat money there will be no place in the world where freedom can flourish.

If the Globalist oppose your efforts, paid for with real hard earned money, all they have to do is fire up the presses and shovel the money to any group that will oppose you.

Not only that but it seems they do it in such a way that the money to achieve THEIR goals is borrowed from them. Then we pay interest to a group outside of our country, like the Federal Reserve, on the creation and borrowing of OUR OWN money.

IN ESSENCE THEY BEAT US WITH OUR OWN STICK!

Posted by: Stokeybob | June 27, 2009 4:21 PM | Report abuse

I think they should uphold the rule of law and govern by the rules set forth by the United States Constitution, as they swore they would with their oaths of office.

Back in the sixties the government came into the schools and brainwashed us with the idea we needed to control the population because it was rising so fast. They said the roads would become crowded and we would run out of things like water.

They unleashed abortions, birth control pills, and other forms of Family Planning.

To allow the country to be over run with the criminals in businesses illegal labor while the criminals in the government aid and abet the invasion is a travesty against mankind.

They have seen to it our children were killed to control the population at the same time allowing the world to export their population problems here.

What about our sacrifices, many made against our will?

P.S. We still haven't recovered from the last time the criminals in business were allowed to bring in their slaves.

Posted by: Stokeybob | June 27, 2009 4:20 PM | Report abuse

The pro illegal immigration lobby is spinning like mad.

According to the Pew Hispanic Center, almost all illegal ailens are Hispanic. DHS say 70% are from Mexico. La Raza (The Race, as in the superior race = racist org) say 95% are Hispanic.

Why should lawbreaking Hispanics be given amensty, and preferential immigration treatment over law abiding people of all other races and ethnic groups?

Why shoud Hispanic Americans have a greater right to family reunifcation with their lawbreaking family members, in terms of numbers allowed in, conditions of entry, and timing of arrival?

It's is racist.

It violates our constitution's anti discrimiation and equal protection clauses.

No one in America should be above the law, not even illegal aliens.

Uphold the law. Deport them all.

Posted by: Bettybb | June 26, 2009 9:43 PM | Report abuse

Hunter340: Please cite the reference you obtained your information from. I would be very interested in reading the article in its entirety. In response to your item #2:

Although you reflect 60% of undocumented aliens fall under this category, I would like to point out, the use of the use of a fake social security number for the sole intention of working does not constitute identity-theft. Please see Flores-Figueroa v. United States, No. 08-108. As is stated in the Supreme Court Ruling, "Justice Stephen G. Breyer, in his opinion for the court, said the case should be decided by applying “ordinary English grammar” to the text of the law, which applies when an offender “knowingly transfers, possesses or uses, without lawful authority, a means of identification of another person.” Now, with that said, you would have to prove the 60% of undocumented workers 'knowingly' used another person's social security number.

Posted by: ksanchez6 | June 26, 2009 7:07 PM | Report abuse

Illegal immigrants fall into one of three primary categories when considering comprehensive immigration reform.

1.) Those whose only crime is a misdemeanor – illegal entry

This group consists of day laborers and others who have not committed identity fraud or other serious crimes. They make up about 30% of the estimated 12 million illegals.

As Pres. Obama has proposed they could be allowed a pathway to citizenship by paying a fine, going to the back of the immigration line and applying for citizenship. Then after the current backlog of legal immigrants has been processed they could be allowed back in the country when their citizenship has been granted.

2.) Those who have committed both a misdemeanor and a felony – illegal entry and identity fraud.

This group consists of construction, manufacturing and service industry workers who have committed identity fraud but no other serious crimes. They make up about 60% of the estimated 12 million illegals.

They have caused irreparable damage to millions of innocent American citizens whose identities were stolen. Since it's not practical to imprison 7.5 million illegal's, the government will record their DNA and then deport them with no chance for citizenship.

3.) Those who are career criminals.

This group consists of hardcore criminals and gang members. They make up about 10% of the estimated 12 million illegals.

Many of these perps are already imprisoned. In fact nearly 30% of all Federal and State prisoners are illegal aliens. Both current and future convicted illegal alien career criminals will have their DNA recorded and then deported with no chance for citizenship after completing their sentence. Acquitted illegal aliens will have their DNA recorded and then deported with no chance for citizenship.

Posted by: hunter340 | June 26, 2009 5:56 PM | Report abuse

I love how anti-immigration people get on here and copy and posts the same "fear" mongering without any facts or half truths. I also like how they just assume all illegal immigrants are Mexicans, abuse the system, and cost taxpayers money. Look, an estmated 12 million-30 million people are in in some form of violating our immigration laws, so it is not reasonable to think all can be deported. However, I am in favor of deporting all criminal aliens immediately who or those locked in our prisons that we, the tax payers pay for. However I would like to keep families together, along with paying a hefty fine, say $10,000 over a three year period, no voting rights, and lifetime probation, and no chance at bringing non immediate family members here, or citizenship rights,only permanent residence. People try and act as though they are taking American jobs and most sensible Americans know they do not work jobs that American prefer usually(restaurants, agriculture,etc..) I guess the anti-immigrant people would love paying twice as much for their vegetables or other produce? The red tape of our system creates un-needed cheating, an unorderly process, and costs us taxpayers millions if not billions per year.

Posted by: jarbrad | June 26, 2009 4:02 PM | Report abuse

If the CITIZENS of the USA have no say in what is done about the illegal aliens in this country, then the government will win another battle in their war against us, by giving them amnesty. They are a drain on our economy and need to be DEPORTED. Just think about the BILLIONS of dollars that could be used for something better for our legal citizens. It would not only help the federal government, but would greatly benifit every state in the USA.

Posted by: herbster40 | June 26, 2009 4:01 PM | Report abuse

Lets see... the people at the table for the illegal aliens will be the Congress people representing the illegal aliens, the Mexican Government, Ford Foundation, the Pew Hispanic Centre, La Raza, the United States Chamber of Commerce and the Immigration Lawyers to name a few. But lets not forget the two members of his cabinet that are members of that famous racist Hispanic group called La Raza.

And then.. on the American People's side we have... nobody. Look at the polls for the last twenty years and you discover the American People have asked for two things over, and over, and over again. We wanted the illegal aliens deported, and the immigration level turned way down. Had we done it that way, we would have saved billions, and billions of dollars too.

My crystal ball is practically hopping all over my desk. Yep.. yep. It says in this case, the American People Zero, Lobby groups for illegal aliens 100.

Posted by: joelwisch | June 26, 2009 2:43 PM | Report abuse

Obama said himself that people who break the law should go to jail. Was that only for Americans, and meanwhile illegals can break law after law? Comeon, for once, be OUR PRESIDENT, and stand up for the AMERICAN PEOPLE.

Posted by: highwaybluesoccer | June 26, 2009 12:17 PM | Report abuse

Game on. The small and shrinking knot of opponents of reform and opponents of a solution are going nuts here because they see the writing on the wall. Immigration reform that gets immigrants into the system and paying taxes, holds employers reesponsible and secures the borders, and helps increase revenue and economic stability is moving forward quickly and the fantasy that we will drive out 12,000,000 people who are here illegally is off the table.

The old crew was voted out and the Dems were voted in to solve tough problems and get things done. The Republicans need to get this issue off the table before another election because following the opponents of reform is a gaping head wound that is bleeding support and threatening to make them a permanent minority.

Posted by: AndiMedi | June 26, 2009 11:45 AM | Report abuse

This issue should be put to a special vote by the American Citizens! If you had a vote tomorrow Amnesty would lose hands down because Americans DO NOT want the illegals to be rewarded with Amnesty!! They take,take,take from OUR Country and give very little back! One thing they do give US is higher taxes along with lower wages, Identity Theft and increased violent crime ! The bottom line is they are hurting our country by taking advantage of every social program available and sending Billions of dollars out of OUR Country when it should be spent here to improve our current economic problems! This issue should be settled once and for all by enforcing OUR current immigration laws with a few changes to increase the penalty for entering OUR Country illegally and especially for reentry!!! NO AMNESTY NOW!! NO AMNESTY EVER!!

Posted by: Klimax | June 26, 2009 10:28 AM | Report abuse

Pres. obama, you said,...

"We are a nation of laws and a nation of immigrants..."

Then ENFORCE THE LAWS, obama!

The American people DO NOT want AMNESTY for 20 million ILLEGAL ALIENS!!!

Send these 20 million ILLEGAL ALIENS back to their own country where they belong and let them apply to come here LEGALLY like the millions of others who are waiting to come here LEGALLY. Then they will be welcomed with open arms.

ENFORCE THE LAW! NO AMNESTY! I repeat. ENFORCE THE LAW! NO AMNESTY! Must I say it again? OK. ENFORCE THE LAW! NO AMNESTY!

Posted by: scuncic | June 26, 2009 10:01 AM | Report abuse

Immigration reform is needed immediately because there are millions of Americans out of work who need the jobs that are being taken by low waged illegal workers. This is not to say that these jobs are low paying jobs, but when illegal workers do them employers pay much less. They are not only taking advantage of the honest illegals, but also the hard working Americans who lose their jobs to this.
The Republicans do not need to make a deal with the Democrats to bring even more aliens in to do work that we can do ourselves. If companies want workers with the skills that they get for cheap from overseas they ought to invest in training people that are already employed with them, instead of getting a free ride from people that were schooled for free in countries that value education. We have plenty of people in this country who can do all of this type of work, including picking crops. Of course, they have to pay a little more than starvation wages and our food might go up a couple of pennies, but the way it is now companies are raising the price of food weekly to make more profit, so a few cents extra per veggie or fruit will not hurt us. Put our people back to work again and use all methods that are available!

Posted by: builder7 | June 26, 2009 1:37 AM | Report abuse

I think there is a consensus for a sane immigration bill but if the President and Senator Reid just try to bring back last years failed bill with the pay a fine and go to the end of the line nonsense then it will not pass and it shouldn't.

Undocumented workers are not stupid and would not come forward to pay a fine when they did not have to. Neither would any one else.

Nor would they risk the life they have here to come forward and go back to their country of origin to make an application for citizenship or a green card that has an uncertain chance of being approved and little chance of being acted on promptly.

The pay a fine and go to the end of the line provisions of the bill make it unworkable and a joke that seems to be written by those who have little understanding of illegal immigration or who want the bill to not work so that the status quo can remain.

Change does not mean bringing back failed and unworkable legislation of the past.

Posted by: danielhancock | June 26, 2009 1:34 AM | Report abuse

The recovery will be nothing more that a reset to far lower economic and quality of life expectations in this country.

Liquidated are the tradition backstops of industrial and agricultural employment, and to a large extent the high technology industry.

I see Obama madly throttling the economy with massive deficit spending, reasonable given lessons of the last depression. But it is in vain, as the core of the economy departed American shores long ago. Lacking such traction, his wheels will only spin and add massive debt to the Nation's problems.

If the eventual depths of this economic downturn are as the Grand Canyon, we haven't even crossed into Arizona yet. The economic paradigm we are discovering is that, one way or another, it costs the same thing to make something no matter where in the world you make it.

Exploitation of cheap, oppressed, or illegal labor works only for the near term. But its effects, like those of slavery long ago, will define America in the centuries ahead.

Posted by: bushieisa | June 25, 2009 8:09 PM | Report abuse

AMNESTY WILL COST US TAXPAXPAYERS $2.6 TRILLION DOLLARS.

Don't anybody tell you that illegal immigrants are good for the economy? For businesses who harbor the cheap labor and make huge profits a guaranteed--YES! But certainly not for the US taxpayer, who supports the illegal worker? Summoning up the tax situation the Heritage foundation after complex analysis for 2004, conveys "that for low-skill immigrant households paid only $10,573 in taxes. Thus, low-skill immigrant households received nearly three dollars in benefits and services for EACH DOLLAR in taxes paid. The federal government operates over 60 means-tested aid programs. The largest of these are Medicaid; the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC); food stamps; Supplemental Security Income (SSI); Section 8 housing; public housing; Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF); the school lunch and breakfast programs; the WIC (Women, Infants, and Children) nutrition program; and the Social Services Block Grant (SSBG).

Many means-tested programs, such as SSI and the EITC, provide cash to recipients. Others, such as public housing or SSBG, pay for ser­vices that are provided to recipients." Another fallacy is that illegal immigrants cannot apply for any federal benefits, but even those programs have been abused with fraudulent documents.

Then their is the classic illegal female who slips past the undermanned border patrols, pregnant with child under the current misguided law, becomes an instant burden on the US taxpayer. Quoted as, " Illegal immigrant households do contain some 3 million children who were born inside the U.S. to illegal immigrant parents. These children are U.S. citizens and are eligible for, and do receive, means-tested welfare of every category." Assuming all Americans, even liberals and so called progressives want to know more, they should venture to the non-profit organization The Heritage Foundation under the headline, "
The Fiscal Cost of Low-Skill Immigrants to the U.S. Taxpayer by Robert E. Rector and Christine Kim Verify the extraction tool from the workplace of foreign labor and the 8th Amnesty is enacted against the peoples wishes, the next irreversible ultimate problem is OVERPOPULATION. Another headline that must interest the avid reader from the same source AMNESTY WILL COST US TAXPAXPAYERS $2.6 TRILLION DOLLARS. The only outcome of this massive AMNESTY would be irreversible OVERPOPULATION. Steve Reiss, points a disturbing fact, not disclosed by our government. If the current immigration bill being debated by congress passes it will be the 8th AMNESTY in 21 years. NUMBERSUSA has answers.

MAYBE THE ILLEGAL IMMIGRANT INVASION DOESN'T GET YOU ON THE PHONE. BUT A FUTURE OF OVERPOPULATION SHOULD?

Copy, paste and distribute freely.

Posted by: infinity555 | June 25, 2009 7:41 PM | Report abuse

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