Immigration Reform Rally

Posted By Horizon Staff April 16th, 2013 in News : 1 COMMENTS

Jonathan Puckett
Staff Writer

Tens of thousands of immigration reform supporters are planning a rally in Washington, D.C. to push forward a bill that would legalize undocumented immigrants currently residing in the United States.  It is predicted to be the biggest rally for immigration reform in at least seven years, as the organizers expect large groups from over 30 states to make an appearance, with thousands of additional people participating around the country in rallies to support the bill.

The immigration bill was crafted to provide a set of strict criteria for undocumented immigrants to meet in order to begin legalization.  If passed, the bill will also establish new high- and low- skill level foreign worker visa programs and make regulation and punishment more strenuous on employers hiring undocumented workers (Fox News).  The rally is set to take place when both bills for legalization movement and increasing border stringency are in the works of being finalized.

Opposition groups are speaking against the rally, declaring that these reforms would be unfair to immigrants overseas who are still awaiting legal access into the country while the government passes a bill that provides legitimacy for undocumented immigrants.  Bob Dane, spokesman for the Federation of American Immigration Reform said, “Today, the rally is a show of force of, by, and for people who have broken the law and are demanding rewards” (Fox News).

The bill being introduced for immigration reform is bi-partisan, with both Republicans and Democrats at the table collectively attempting to provide adequate and widely accepted reform to immigration policy.  The “Gang of Eight” bill, as it is being called, will soon be announced concerning details and the agreements the four Republican and four Democrat representatives have pieced together.  With the passage of the new bill, it would take 10 years for undocumented immigrants to receive a green card and another three years to gain citizenship.  All undocumented immigrants would have to pay a fine, back taxes, and undergo a background check before they could be eligible for citizenship (CNN).

“This is not a protest,” said Lucia Gomez, an organizer of the Manhattan rally. “This is not a protest, instead we are celebrating and asking everyone – citizens, noncitizens alike – to stand in solidarity with love and conviction that the right time to embrace a united nation is now.” (SOURCE?)

Included in the thousands of demonstrators in Washington D.C. are hundreds, if not thousands, of undocumented Asian immigrants who want to show that the issue of immigration reform is not one that belongs solely to Latino and Hispanic immigrants; one in 11 undocumented immigrants is Asian and they too will benefit from any immigration reform that is scheduled to be announced on Wednesday.  (WILL THIS HAVE ALREADY BEEN ANNOUNCED BY THE TIME THIS PAPER COMES OUT ON THURSDAY?)

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