Magazine article The Christian Century

American Baptists Applaud Moves toward Immigration Reform

Magazine article The Christian Century

American Baptists Applaud Moves toward Immigration Reform

Article excerpt

Leaders of the American Baptist Churches USA who serve in ministry to immigrants and refugees welcomed a bipartisan framework unveiled by eight senators who are being called the "gang of eight" for their public effort to get the ball rolling on legislation to rewrite the nation's immigration laws.

Officials at American Baptist Home Mission Societies applauded the proposed plan for comprehensive reform brought forward January 28 by Democrats Chuck Schumer, Dick Durbin, Bob Menendez and Michael Bennet and Republicans John McCain, Lindsey Graham, Marco Rubio and Jeff Flake.

The Senate framework would provide a path to citizenship for the estimated 11 million immigrants already in the country illegally, secure the border, simplify legal immigration and cut down on the hiring of immigrants lacking a green card.

President Obama outlined his ideas on the subject in a speech January 29 in Las Vegas that in some details was more liberal, including less emphasis on securing borders. However, the president welcomed the Senate initiative to take up the thorny issues. Republicans have agreed that it is urgent for their party to broaden its appeal to Latino voters. …

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