President Obama has spent the past two days meeting with the Congressional Black Caucus and Congressional Hispanic Caucus to strategize as the immigration reform bill that passed the Senate awaits judgment day in the House.
House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) convened a meeting with his caucus this afternoon to decide whether there’s majority support to bring the bill to the floor.
On Tuesday morning, Obama met with the CBC at the White House. “During the meeting, they discussed a range of topics including the economy, voting rights legislation, education, comprehensive immigration reform, youth employment, gun violence, and anti-poverty programs,” the White House said in a readout of the meeting.
“The President and the CBC conveyed their deep disappointment with the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision on the Voting Rights Act. The President reaffirmed his commitment to addressing voter discrimination through the Department of Justice and expressed his interested in working with Congress to pass legislation to ensure that every American who is eligible to vote has access to the polls,” it continued. “Though the economy is showing signs of improvement, the President and the CBC expressed shared frustration over the pace of economic growth and the elevated unemployment rate among African Americans.”
“…They also discussed the benefits of fixing our broken immigration system and the need for a commonsense approach.”
Late this morning Obama met with the Hispanic Caucus, which was also a closed-door meeting.
“Today’s meeting with President Obama served as a great opportunity to reiterate the Congressional Hispanic Caucus’s commitment to passing a comprehensive immigration bill that will bring 11 million undocumented out of the shadows while strengthening America’s economic future,” said Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.). “We discussed shared views on the next steps to take, and I was pleased to hear that the President’s public strategy will include speaking directly to the American people about the importance of comprehensive immigration reform with a clear pathway to citizenship while underscoring the vast economic benefits of this common sense legislation.”
Menendez said House leadership “must garner the political will and courage to unite the nation and send a comprehensive immigration reform bill to President Obama’s desk – a bill that will increase the GDP, reduce the deficit, promote prosperity, and create jobs.”
“Now is not the time to put tea party politics ahead of the will of the American people,” he added. “I urge my Republican colleagues to do the right thing, and I look forward to working with the President in the coming months to fix our nation’s broken immigration system once and for all.”
Early this morning the White House released a report titled “The Economic Benefits of Fixing Our Broken Immigration System.”
“A larger labor force; higher productivity and investment; and stronger technology, tourism, hospitality, agriculture, and housing industries are just some of the key ways that immigration reform strengthens the U.S. economy,” it said. “…According to CBO and other independent studies, immigration reform will ultimately increase overall U.S. productivity, resulting in higher GDP and higher wages.”