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Republicans Create PAC To Lobby For Immigration Reform

Francesca Martens |
January 17, 2013 | 8:39 p.m. PST

Executive Producer

Immigration reform supporters in San Jose, CA (Flickr/SEIU International)
Immigration reform supporters in San Jose, CA (Flickr/SEIU International)
In an effort to reel in the Latino vote back from Democratic waters, Republicans Carlos Gutierrez, former commerce secretary under President George W. Bush and Charlie Spies, a Washington lawyer announced their creation of a super PAC to raise money to support immigration reform.

"This is not small ball," Gutierrez said during a press  conference hosted by the National Immigration Forum.

  "We're serious, and we are going to push the debates on immigration reform to a place where I believe the Republican Party should be in the 21st century."

READ: Mayor Villaraigosa Urges National Immigration Reform

Following the latest 2012 election, Republicans seemed to have realized the importance of the Latino vote, one which made up more than 10 percent of the electorate and which the GOP alienated due to their opposition to government assistance programs, healthcare and most importantly, immigration reform.

While Gutierrez is adamant about the need for Republicans to acquire a significant chunk of the Latino electorate in order to keep growing, Latino Fox News reported that neither Spies nor Gutierrez have yet to outline a fundraising goal.

"First they have to be legalized," Gutierrez said. "Then you have to find a way to get into a line for the green card. ... There will be requirements. And we'll have to negotiate some sort of requirements."

The Republican Party remains divided over the issue, however, they have called for a 'piece-meal' approach which would entail having a "series of steps" towards achieving citizenship. The Democratic Party, on the other hand, has been calling for comprehensive immigration reform.

READ: Obama Plans To Pursue One-Step Immigration Reform In Second Term

Chamber of Commerce President and CEO, Tom Donohue, told the Huffington Post that it doesn't bother him that the Republicans want a piecemeal approach:

"I believe we ought to just move forward on all of the arrangements so that ... we'll develop an understanding of all of these issues and then finally decide whether we'll do it in one, two or three pieces," he said. "That is the least of our worries, the fact is that they do it. For us, we'll continue to talk about a comprehensive bill."

Similarly, Gutierrez elucidated that he was not worried over his fellow party members' reluctance towards wide-sweeping reform. "That is the least of our worries, the fact is that they do it. For us, we'll continue to talk about a comprehensive bill."

For now, Donahue named legalization for undocumented immigrants, border security, laxer visa program and an enhanced employer verification system for immigration reform at the conference. The ultimate goal, he told ABC , should be allowing more immigrants to come to the U.S. to fulfill the needs of businesses.

"Even with high unemployment," he said, "we have millions of job openings that go unfilled. Either the workers come here to fill them or those jobs go somewhere else."


Read more of Neon Tommy's immigration reform coverage here.

Reach Executive Producer Francesca Martens here. Follow her here.


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Dave Francis (not verified) on January 18, 2013 9:15 PM


Everybody can have a say in this illegal immigration controversy, by calling their federal and state representatives? President Obama is determined to give people who have no respect for our laws, a path to citizenship; even low key criminals. Zero-in on your politicians and demand they vote for passage of Texas Republican Lamar Smith “(The Legal Workforce Act (H.R. 2885)” to remove unauthorized workers from nationwide business by implementing mandated E-Verify. Both businesses and the American people overwhelmingly support E-Verify. Nearly 360,000 American employers voluntarily use E-Verify and over 2,700 new businesses sign up every week. The program quickly confirms 99.5% of work-eligible employees. It's free, fast, and easy to use. With 23 million Americans unemployed or underemployed and seven million illegal immigrants working in the U.S., now is the time to increase E-Verify. Then also demand passage of the “Birthright Citizenship bill (Rep. Steve King, R-IA; H.R.140)”, which will collapse the intentional smuggling of the illegal unborn into the United States to collect hundreds of billions of dollars in entitlements from taxpayers by parents.

Called “anchor babies,” the children of illegal immigrants born in the United States cannot actually prevent deportation of their parents. It is not until they attain the age of 21 that the children are able to file paperwork to sponsor their parents (CHAIN MIGRATION) for legal immigration status. The cost is unparalleled for the U.S. taxpayer who is charged with the free education, health care and low income shelter and cash payments. The parents remain exposed until that point. A well regulated Guest Labor force could be provided for agriculture, but not permanent residency. Plus the STEM program for technical professionals who wish to immigrate, but not unlimited numbers. The impoverished should not apply, as America has millions of its own under privileged. All the facts, the shocking costs to federal and mainly states welfare benefits, which the Liberal Progressives press, does not wish to be known at NumbersUSA website.

Are we about to lose our rights, our guns and a say on illegal immigration?

lgjhere (not verified) on January 18, 2013 7:14 PM

Let’s face it, this immigration thing is a 20th century issue that has slopped over into the 21st century and the time has come to finally resolve it in an intelligent fashion. An interesting new worldwide book/ebook that helps explain the role, struggles, and contributions of immigrants and minorities is "What Foreigners Need To Know About America From A To Z: How to understand crazy American culture, people, government, business, language and more.” It paints a revealing picture of America for those who will benefit from a better understanding. Endorsed by ambassadors, educators, and editors, it also informs those who want to learn more about the last remaining superpower and how it compares to other nations on many issues.
As the book points out, immigrants and minorities are a major force in America, as Romney and the GOP recently discovered. Immigrants and the children they bear account for 60 percent of our nation’s population growth and own 11 percent of US businesses and are 60 percent more likely to start a new business than native-born Americans. They represent 17 percent of all new business owners (in some states more than 30 percent). Foreign-born business owners generate nearly one-quarter of all business income in California and nearly one-fifth in the states of New York, Florida, and New Jersey.
Legal immigrants number 850,000 each year; undocumented (illegal) immigrants are estimated to be half that number. They come to improve their lives and create a foundation of success for their children to build upon, as did the author’s grandparents when they landed at Ellis Island in 1899 after losing 2 children to disease on a cramped cattle car-like sailing from Europe to the Land of Opportunity. Many bring skills and a willingness to work hard to make their dreams a reality, something our founders did four hundred years ago. In describing America, chapter after chapter identifies “foreigners” who became successful in the US and contributed to our society. However, most struggle in their efforts and need guidance in Anytown, USA. Perhaps intelligent immigration reform, concerned citizens and books like this can extend a helping hand. Here’s a closing quote from the book’s Intro: “With all of our cultural differences though, you’ll be surprised to learn how much our countries—and we as human beings—have in common on this little third rock from the sun. After all, the song played at our Disneyland parks around the world is ‘It’s A Small World After All.’ Peace.” www.AmericaAtoZ.com