Update on Aug. 5, 2013: In a response to this article from Jonathan Merritt, he noted he spoke to someone at CBS about its poll showing that 75 percent of evangelicals support a conditional pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants. CBS, it turns out, made the same mistake as Merritt and used "evangelicals" when they meant "white evangelicals." We believe, though, that this new information makes the point of this analysis even stronger. Since non-white evangelicals are at least as likely to support immigration reform as white evangelicals, then the Evangelical Immigration Table does indeed represent the views of a supermajority of evangelicals.
Evangelical support for immigration reform is a top-down, "grasstops," elite-led movement with little support among the "grassroots," or the evangelicals in the pews, Jonathan Merritt and Mark Tooley have recently argued. Their arguments, though, are based upon an assumption that the views of all evangelicals are represented by the views of white evangelicals.
"As it turns out, the evangelical movement on immigration has been mostly top-down and not bottom-up. It has failed to do the difficult work of convincing and mobilizing (or at least neutralizing) the millions of evangelical churchgoers and voters," Merritt, an evangelical author, wrote July 23 for Religion News Service. more >>
While there has been much ado about Sen. Marco Rubio's (R-Fla.) recent drop in favorability among Republican voters, the storyline has certainly been overplayed by the media.
Rubio is the only Republican that is both considered a future presidential contender and is publicly leading the effort for immigration reform. (Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.) is believed to be working behind the scenes but has avoided public statements.) Media articles about politics often prefer to write about politicians as if they are heading in either one of two directions – up or down. The reality, though, is usually more complicated.
Here are three reasons Rubio should still be considered a front-runner to become the Republican presidential nominee in 2016. more >>
Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) is under fire from members of his own party for suggesting that most undocumented immigrants are drug mules.
King was addressing the issue of unauthorized immigrants who were brought to the United States by their parents when they were minors for a July 18 interview with Newsmax.
For child of an unauthorized immigrant who becomes "a valedictorian," he said, "there's another 100 out there who weigh 130 pounds, and they've got calves the size of cantaloupes because they're hauling 75 pounds of marijuana across the desert. Those people would be legalized with the same act." more >>
WASHINGTON – Immigration reform legislation that gives legal status to the children of undocumented immigrants, but not to their parents, would be unacceptable, Samuel Rodriguez, president of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference, said Wednesday in a press conference that followed a meeting with Speaker of the House John Boehner and other Republican leaders.
"Legal status for children, at the exclusion of the parents would be egregious," Rodriguez said. "We're pastors. We pastor families, not just children. We stand committed, without compromise, to family unification. So, we would be vehemently opposed to any legislative piece that legalizes children while their parents can be deported. That's anti-family, anti-Christian, anti-American. We will not accept it. Period."
At a Tuesday committee hearing, though, some Republicans suggested they would be willing to do just that. more >>
WASHINGTON – An Evangelical Immigration Table leader responded Wednesday to Eric Metaxas' criticism of the group. Metaxas withdrew his support from the group for their perceived endorsement of the Senate immigration reform bill. The EIT has not and will not endorse any particular piece of legislation, the Rev. Gabriel Salguero told The Christian Post at a press conference.
Salguero began his remarks by noting how much he respects Metaxas, a popular evangelical author and speaker.
"Eric is from my city (New York), and I respect him very much," Salguero answered. "I particularly like his work on William Wilberforce and Dietrich Bonhoeffer. So I have much respect for him." more >>
Leaders of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference, America's largest Hispanic Christian organization with over 40,000 member churches, are traveling to Washington, D.C., today to meet with Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-Ohio) and other top House Republicans in an effort to revive stalled immigration legislation.
NHCLC President Samuel Rodriguez told The Christian Post Tuesday that the goal of the meeting is to dispel Republican fears that the Hispanic community is committed to the Democratic party and to argue that Hispanic evangelicals have more in common with the Republican party on family, faith and religious liberty issues.
The NHCLC will meet White House officials at 9 a.m. ET, then meet with 19 House Republican leaders at 1 p.m. ET A press conference is scheduled for after the meeting at 2 p.m. Also at 9 a.m., the Evangelical Immigration Table, which the NHCLC partners with, will hold a press conference outside the Capitol. That press conference will be followed by a worship service at Church of the Reformation. After worship, attendees will be visiting the offices of House members to express their support for comprehensive immigration reform. more >>