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Damage Control by the White House

La Opinin, Editorial, Staff Posted: Aug 25, 2009

Secretary of Homeland Security, Janet Napolitano, hosted a White House meeting on immigration last week with over 100 people. The meetings outcome was positive for most attendees because the Obama administration reaffirmed its commitment to immigration reform.

The goal of the invitation to activists, business people and labor organizers among others was to address the furor which was ignited by the decision to delay the immigration vote in Congress until next year. The meeting didnt change the White Houses plans, but it did control some of the damage caused by the presidents decision, especially among Latino voters who had supported Obama and remembered his campaign promise for immigration reform in his first year in office.

In short, there was much talk and even a surprise visit by Obama proof that the immigration issue is on the presidents agenda all of which was sufficient to defuse, at least publicly, many of the concerns.

Meanwhile, things on the street remain the same. Excessive force by local police under the 287 (g) program and a lack of adequate federal oversight continue. So too, do the arrests of hard-working people with the excuse of searching for dangerous criminals, the ongoing use of E-Verify, which confuses people's identities, and the situation of millions living in the shadow of deportation.

As we commented a few days ago about Immigration Customs Enforcement, these feel like empty words especially when they fail to redress but only reinforce the most punitive aspects of the immigration issue.
We recognize that the presidents plate is full with healthcare reform. And, it is understandable that this is taking up a lot of his energy. But a change in immigration cannot wait either. Certain political moments must be seized and addressing the urgency of immigration reform cannot be put off any longer.

Related Articles:

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No Change in Immigration Policy

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