While many evangelical pastors and leaders have been active in promoting immigration reform through the Evangelical Immigration Table, recent polls suggest that white evangelicals fall behind the rest of the nation in their support of immigrants and immigration reform.
A recent poll conducted by Public Religion Research Institute and The Brookings Institution, and a recent poll conducted by Pew Research Center, both show that white evangelicals are the least supportive, among the combined religious and race/ethnic groups studied, of creating a path to citizenship for unauthorized immigrants.
In the PRRI survey, 56 percent of white evangelicals favored a path to citizenship, compared to 63 percent of all Americans. In the Pew survey, 62 percent of white evangelicals said unauthorized immigrants should be allowed to stay legally (compared to 71 percent for all Americans), with 20 percent saying they should be able to apply for permanent residency and 40 percent saying they should be able to apply for citizenship. more >>
The Evangelical Immigration Table, a group of evangelical pastors and organizations formed to support immigration reform, has bought airtime on Christian radio stations in four key states – Colorado, Florida, North Carolina, and Texas – to encourage members of Congress to pass comprehensive immigration reform.
The ads began running just after Easter Sunday. They will feature the voices of pastors from the area in which the ads run.
In one example, the voice in the ad says, in part, "As Christians, we should be known by our love ... many of our neighbors come here seeking opportunity, but our dysfunctional immigration system breaks up families and causes suffering. Christ calls all of us to compassion and to justice. I invite you to join a growing movement of Christians asking our political leaders for immigration solutions rooted in biblical values that reflect each person's God-given dignity, respect the rule of law, protect family unity, guarantee secure borders, ensure fairness for taxpayers, and establish a path toward citizenship." more >>
U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) quickly issued a statement over the weekend regarding the Gang of Eight's immigration reform plan after his colleague, Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.), said all members have agreed on a proposal.
On NBC's "Meet the Press" on Sunday, Chuck Todd asked Schumer "is a deal done?"
Schumer told Todd that the gang of eight will have a proposal ready next week that will go to Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, for markup and debate in the committee, and then it will move to the Senate floor in May for debate among all members. more >>
Big business and labor finally resolved a dispute over a low-skilled worker program that was a major obstacle in the ongoing efforts for a sweeping immigration reform bill. However, Fla. Republican Sen. Marco Rubio's office cautioned that Congress still has a long way to go.
The deal was struck in a phone call late Friday night with AFL-CIO labor federation President Richard Trumka, U.S. Chamber of Commerce head Tom Donohue, and Democratic Sen. Chuck Schumer of New York, who's been mediating the dispute, The Associated Press reported.
A person familiar with the negotiations was quoted as saying that the deal resolves disagreements over wages for the new workers and the industries that should be included. more >>
The Senate voted 43 to 56 against an amendment to the budget resolution this past weekend that would have prevented illegal immigrants from receiving Medicaid or Obamacare benefits if they qualify to receive a green card or are granted legal status under the immigration reform plan.
Senator Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee and ranking member of the Budget Committee, introduced the amendment, which was voted down and split along party lines for the "gang of eight" senators who are working on a bipartisan immigration reform plan.
"The core legal and economic principle of immigration is that those seeking admission to a new country must be self-sufficient and contribute to the economic health of the nation," Sessions said in a statement. "But, for years, the federal government has failed to enforce this law. This principle is even more urgent when dealing with those who have illegally entered the country." more >>
The bipartisan group of congressmen in the House, who are part of the "secret" group of eight, are expected to present their proposal for comprehensive immigration reform one to two weeks after April 9, when they return from Passover and Easter recess.
Rep. John Carter (R-Texas), who's among the original five members who started meeting privately four years ago to discuss immigration reform, told The Christian Post he cannot reveal any details about the House plan, because members of the group have agreed not to discuss their proposal until it's complete. But he is, however, "looking forward to a time when he can talk about it."
Carter confirmed earlier this month that E-Verify is expected to be an integral part of immigration reform, and he told CP on Wednesday that "any changes will have to be implemented over a three-year period" because we "need an E-Verify system that serves everybody," including owners of small businesses, whom he says "will not be disadvantaged" by a reformed E-Verify system, and it will be "an advantage to them." more >>