- (Photo: Reuters)
Rev. Samuel Rodriguez and Robert Gittelson have called on Latino voters to choose the better equipped candidate to work on immigration reform in the upcoming presidential election next week.
In a recently released Op-Ed, Rodriguez, the president of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference, and Gittelson, who is the co-founder of Conservatives for Comprehensive Immigration Reform, state that in 2013, since both President Obama and Republican candidate Mitt Romney have committed to work on the issue, "they will be obligated to seek a compromise on immigration reform by reaching across the aisle to work hand in hand with the other party."
"Therefore, we should look to each candidate to see who is better equipped to work across the aisle on this issue," they urge voters, particularly Hispanic faith voters that stand conflicted on the issue of immigration.
According to them, President Obama has continued to articulate his outline for immigration reform, but his plans are identical to the outline that failed to pass in both 2006 and 2007.
"As a leader, it is incumbent upon the president to articulate a new path – a path that can find bipartisan support. In that regard he has failed the Hispanic community," they highlighted.
Former Governor Mitt Romney has also outlined a plan for comprehensive immigration reform, which was released a week after Obama announced an initiative to stop deporting young illegal immigrants just months prior to the election.
"Some people have asked if I will let stand the president's executive action," Romney said at the time. "The answer is that I will put in place my own long-term solution that will replace and supersede the president's temporary measure."
On Romney's website it states, "As president, Mitt Romney will implement a national immigration strategy to address our nation's broken immigration system. He will reach across the aisle and work with Congress to forge lasting solutions."
The leaders cite some biblical passages in Leviticus 19 and Romans 13 to base their declarations. In Romans 13 they point, "Let every person be subject to the governing authorities (…) owe no one anything, except to love one another, for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law...." and Leviticus 19 says, "You shall love your neighbor as yourself."
Rodriguez and Gittelson have urged voters to look first to their values: "As people of faith, we urge our brothers and sisters to look at this election with fresh eyes, an open mind, and an open heart."
"Ultimately, both candidates will need to seek compromise as they lead on this issue. Look therefore to your hearts, and to your fundamental values. Pray on this important decision. Do not cast your vote in fear. We pray that you cast your vote in faith."