News / USA

Immigration Debate Divides Republicans

Immigration Debate Divides Republicansi
X
August 06, 2013
Supporters of immigration reform say they will be out in force this month pressuring members of Congress to pass legislation that establishes a path to citizenship for most of the estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants in the United States. The Senate has passed a comprehensive reform bill but the Republican-controlled House of Representatives is moving more slowly, as VOA National correspondent Jim Malone reports.

Immigration Debate Divides Republicans

TEXT SIZE - +
Supporters of immigration reform say they will be out in force this month pressuring members of Congress to pass legislation that establishes a path to citizenship for most of the estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants in the United States. The Senate has passed a comprehensive reform bill but the Republican-controlled House of Representatives is moving more slowly.

Supporters of immigration reform rally near the Capitol in Washington, hoping to convince lawmakers to act. House Republicans appear to be in no hurry, though, including Congressman Steve King of Iowa.

King recently sparked anger when he dismissed many young immigrants as drug smugglers in an interview with Newsmax TV. “For everyone who’s a valedictorian, there’s another 100 out there who weigh 130 pounds and they’ve got calves the size of cantaloupes because they are hauling 75 pounds of marijuana across the desert,” he said.

Among those condemning King was Republican Speaker of the House, John Boehner. “What he said does not reflect the values of the American people or the Republican Party. We all need to do our work in a constructive, open and respectful way.”

The immigration debate has divided Republicans in Congress, especially over a path to citizenship. Many conservatives see that as amnesty for those who entered the country illegally.

Carroll Doherty, with the Pew Research Center in Washington, said, “They look confused about which direction to head and even about some of the basic principles of their philosophy. Do they present a more moderate face on issues like gay marriage and immigration or not?”

Moderate Republicans favor passing some version of immigration reform, said Republican strategist Ford O’Connell. “This is a signal to Hispanics, to Asians, to other minorities that we care about your plight because we understand that you are not going to listen to what we have to say on policy if you think we are going to deport your grandmother.”

House Republicans say they will not follow the Senate’s lead and pass a comprehensive bill. Their first priority is shoring up the U.S. border with Mexico.

Despite the slow progress in the House, Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi remains upbeat. “I’m optimistic about it because it has to happen. We just cannot let this languish,” she said.

Failing to reach out to minority voters could have enormous consequences for a Republican Party trying to change its image, said O’Connell.

“That the Republicans are only concerned about white voters and they are not concerned about the rank and file voter, and I hate to tell people that if you kill immigration reform, in the long run you could wind up killing the Republican Party,” he said.

The House resumes debate on immigration when lawmakers return to Washington next month.

You May Like

Multimedia Relatives of South Korean Ferry Victims Fire at Authorities

46 people are confirmed dead, but some 250 remain trapped inside sunken ferry More

War Legacy Haunts Vietnam, US Relations

$84 million project aims to clean up soil contaminated by Agent Orange More

Wikipedia Proves Useful for Tracking Flu

Technique gave better results than Center for Disease Control (CDC) and Google’s Flu Trends More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Charles Edward Brown
August 06, 2013 4:08 PM
NO AMNESTY and NO PATHWAY to US Citizenship for illegal aliens living in the United States. We need our immigration laws enforced by the Federal Government. We tried Amnesty in 1986 and it failed. We need to deport all illegal aliens, secure the border and fine anyone who hires an illegal alien. We should make E-Verify both Mandatory and retro-active so that employers can ID all the illegal aliens who are currently working for them and fire them.

In Response

by: wigglwagon
August 06, 2013 9:50 PM
Kevin, why do you think legal workers and their families should be forced into unemployment and poverty just to make room for those workers who refuse to abide by the law.


Does your summary of what took place in the 16 and 17 hundreds mean that you think America should not have immigration laws? Just HOW MANY immigrants should be legally admitted every year?

In Response

by: kevin
August 06, 2013 7:36 PM
You are being to harsh, yeah their illegal, but so are us Americans (basically). we met the natives and they helped us hunt food and taught us how to survive.. back then we we're the "immigrants" and we stabbed them in the back and we now claim to be American Citizens, makes no difference, we're no different, we're worse

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Ukraine, Russia, United in Faith, Divided in Politicsi
X
Michael Eckels
April 19, 2014
There is a strong historical religious connection between Russia and Ukraine. But what role is religion playing in the current conflict? In the run-up to Easter, Michael Eckels in Moscow reports for VOA.
Video

Video Ukraine, Russia, United in Faith, Divided in Politics

There is a strong historical religious connection between Russia and Ukraine. But what role is religion playing in the current conflict? In the run-up to Easter, Michael Eckels in Moscow reports for VOA.
Video

Video Face of American Farmer is Changing

The average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population. It’s a troubling trend signaling big changes ahead for American agriculture as aging farmers retire. Reporter Mike Osborne says a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau is suggesting what some of those changes might look like... and why they might not be so troubling.
Video

Video Donetsk Governor: Ukraine Military Assault 'Delicate But Necessary'

Around a dozen state buildings in eastern Ukraine remain in the hands of pro-Russian protesters who are demanding a referendum on self-rule. The governor of the whole Donetsk region is among those forced out by the protesters. He spoke to VOA's Henry Ridgwell from his temporary new office in Donetsk city.
Video

Video Drones May Soon Send Data From High Seas

Drones are usually associated with unmanned flying vehicles, but autonomous watercraft are also becoming useful tools for jobs ranging from scientific exploration to law enforcement to searching for a missing airliner in the Indian Ocean. VOA’s George Putic reports on sea-faring drones.
Video

Video New Earth-Size Planet Found

Not too big, not too small. Not too hot, not too cold. A newly discovered planet looks just right for life as we know it, according to an international group of astronomers. VOA’s Steve Baragona has more.
Video

Video Copts in Diaspora Worry About Future in Egypt

Around 10 percent of Egypt’s population belong to the Coptic faith, making them the largest Christian minority in the Middle East. But they have become targets of violence since the revolution three years ago. With elections scheduled for May and the struggle between the Egyptian military and Islamists continuing, many Copts abroad are deeply worried about the future of their ancient church. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky visited a Coptic church outside Washington DC.
Video

Video Critics Say Venezuelan Protests Test Limits of Military's Support

During the two months of deadly anti-government protests that have rocked the oil-rich nation of Venezuela, President Nicolas Maduro has accused the opposition of trying to initiate a coup. Though a small number of military officers have been arrested for allegedly plotting against the government, VOA’s Brian Padden reports the leadership of the armed forces continues to support the president, at least for now.
Video

Video More Millenials Unplug to Embrace Board Games

A big new trend in the U.S. toy industry has more consumers switching off their high-tech gadgets to play with classic toys, like board games. This is especially true among the so-called millenial generation - those born in the 1980's and 90's. Elizabeth Lee has more from an unusual café in Los Angeles, where the new trend is popular and business is booming.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
AppleAndroid