Arlington, VA – Across the political aisle, a growing chorus joins The LIBRE Initiative in calling for Washington to avoid another government shutdown and come together on a permanent solution for Dreamers and funds for the border.
For far too long, elected oﬃcials on both sides have failed to successfully unite and work on this issue. There is strong bipartisan support for legislation to provide certainty for the Dreamers – immigrants brought here as children. The uncertainty of their status is a barrier that prevents them from reaching their full potential, limiting their ability to contribute fully to their families, their communities, and the only nation they call home. The solution has been obvious to many, but continues to elude Congress and once again members are scrambling just days before another shutdown.
The LIBRE Initiative: “We believe the way forward is clear and there is no reason why the country should face another shutdown in three weeks over this. Pairing these two priorities and avoiding other controversial and unnecessary provisions can earn bipartisan votes and be signed into law – if lawmakers set aside their partisan fights. We stand ready to work with leaders on both sides of the aisle to get this done.” (Daniel Garza, President, The LIBRE Initiative, Once Government Reopens, It’s Time for Border/Dreamer Deal, 1/28/19)
Fwd.us: “As Congress convenes to pass a long term deal to keep the government funded, FWD.us strongly believes that any agreement funding immigration enforcement, and specifically border security, should also include permanent protections for Dreamers and TPS holders…” (FWD.us President Todd Schulte, 2/4/19)
New American Economy: “We now have three weeks to get this right with a deal that provides permanent protections for Dreamers and Temporary Protected Status holders while smartly securing our border,” (John Feinblatt, President of New American Economy. 1/25/19)
UnidosUS: “A real solution will provide dreamers with an earned pathway to citizenship. It will regularize the status of more than 300,000 longtime legal residents with temporary protected status who also, thanks to the policies of this administration, find themselves in legal limbo. A real solution would restore trust in law enforcement and promote public safety by implementing interior immigration enforcement policies that actually prioritize significant public-safety threats…” (Janet Murgueía, President, UnidosUS, 1/9/19)
National Immigration Forum: “A compromise should remain narrow: Strengthen our border security by investing in infrastructure and ports of entry, and strengthen our economy by providing certainty for Dreamers and Temporary Protected Status recipients.” (Ali Noorani, Executive Director of the National Immigration Forum, 1/24/19)
Freedom Partners: “Now is the time for our elected leaders to unite behind the deal on the table – a permanent legal status for Dreamers and funds to strengthen security along the border. This bipartisan deal earned the support of people across the country, key immigration stakeholders, and bipartisan members of Congress. Dreamers continue to strengthen our economy and nation. This is the moment to deliver certainty and security for our nation.” (Freedom Partners Executive Vice President Nathan Nascimento, Press Release, 1/4/19)
Senator Rob Portman (R-OH): “A fair and reasonable solution will put in place stronger border security measures consistent with the president’s request while also codifying the protections for the DACA population.” “Those in the DACA program are here through no fault of their own, and for many, this is the only country they know. This measure represents a permanent legislative solution that will allow those in the DACA program to stay here and continue to contribute to our society while strengthening our border security to protect all Americans. I believe we have a responsibility to resolve this issue, and this legislation is a fair and responsible solution that could get the necessary votes to become law.” (Press release, “Portman, Moran Introduce Legislation to Enhance Border Security and Codify DACA Protections,” Sen. Rob Portman, 1/11/19)
U.S. Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA): “For bills to reach the president’s desk in a divided government, both parties must work together to responsibly govern. It’s time to make deals, and the deal to make here is to secure the border, keep Americans safe, and give certainty to DACA recipients.” (Press Release, “McMorris Rodgers: “Democrats Signaled Today They Would Rather Waste Time on Bills the Senate Won’t Consider and the President Won’t Sign.,” U.S. Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, 1/3/19)
Senator Thom Tillis (R-NC): “We can end the shutdown, secure the border, and take a major step forward on immigration reform by providing long-term certainty to the DACA population. All it will require is the courage to force out the extreme elements on either side of the aisle, the respect to use language that engenders cooperation, and the discipline to remain focused on bridging the gap.” (Senator Thom Tillis, “Ending the shutdown presents opportunity for a solution on immigration,” The Hill, 1/4/19)
Tim Phillips: For all the contentiousness the debate has inspired, the path to resolution is remarkably clear: Provide funding for the border and provide legal certainty for the population of Dreamers, undocumented immigrants living in the U.S. who were brought here as children. (Tim Phillips, President, Americans for Prosperity, “Shutdown Solution Requires a Path for Bringing Dreamers into American Life,” The Daily Caller, 1/13/19)
Steve Forbes: So, President Trump must work with the current Congress in the waning legislative days remaining to make a deal on border security and the Dreamers, undocumented immigrants brought here as minors at no fault of their own. (Steve Forbes, President, Americans for Prosperity, “Time for Donald Trump to close on immigration deal that protects Dreamers and our borders,” USA Today, 12/18/18)
Newt Gingrich and Donald Graham: Let’s do it now. Whether you support money to build the wall or regard it as a waste, everyone knows it is of central importance to the president, and he is proving he is prepared to fight for it. Why shouldn’t Congress take advantage of the best opportunity in years to give the dreamers the open door they deserve? (Newt Gingrich, “Newt Gingrich and Donald Graham: Fund the Wall and Save The Dreamers,” The Washington Post, 12/22/18)
The Washington Post: “If there is a moral imperative in any trade-off involving immigration and security, it’s the urgent necessity of finding a way to ensure a future in this country for dreamers, who are Americans by upbringing, education, loyalty and inclination — by every metric but a strictly legal one. Striking a deal that achieves that outcome should be a no-brainer for both sides. If it means a few billion dollars to construct segments of Mr. Trump’s wall, Democrats should be able to swallow that with the knowledge that it also will have paid to safeguard so many young lives, careers and hopes. (Washington Post Editorial Board, “Trump and Democrats can reach a deal on the wall — if they have the spine to take it,” The Washington Post, 12/12/18)
The Wall Street Journal: “Instead of merely repeating a litany of border woes, he could show his reasonableness on immigration by appearing with Dreamers. He can also broaden his offer to include a path to citizenship for all Dreamers. Mr. Trump has to persuade Dreamers and voters that Mrs. Pelosi is now the obstacle to a reasonable immigration compromise.
He also can’t do that as long as he listens to White House adviser Stephen Miller, the hard-line restrictionist in the White House. He needs to turn the negotiations over to someone who really does want to make an immigration deal. Republican Senator Lindsey Graham is the voice to listen to here.
This will also be a test for Mrs. Pelosi, or it should be. Does she want to ease the deportation fears of more than a million residents, or does she want to spite Mr. Trump and flog immigration as a political issue through 2020? The risk for Democrats is that, sooner or later, the voters will figure out that Democrats are using the Dreamers and undocumented immigrants as political pawns. That’s the case Mr. Trump should be making to the voters to recover from this shutdown fiasco.” (Wall Street Journal Editorial Board “After the Shutdown Fiasco. Trump lost round one, but we’ll now see if Pelosi wants any deal.,” The Wall Street Journal, 1/25/19)
Chicago Tribune: “Trump wants the wall because he wants to be seen as tough on immigration. Democrats want to protect the status of young immigrants known as the Dreamers. Some version of wall money in exchange for an agreement to maintain the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program makes sense.” (Chicago Tribune Editorial Board , “Have we got a deal for Trump: Wall money for DACA Protection,” The Chicago Tribune, 1/8/19)
Dallas Morning News: A deal in which America protects Dreamers and gives them a clear and simple path to citizenship while offering real protection on the border would be a way for both the president and Democratic leaders to walk away from this shutdown as winners. What’s more, the American people would support them. (Dallas Morning News Editorial Board, “Protect Dreamers and Build The Wall, and We All Win,” Dallas Morning News, 1/17/19)