Center for American Progress

A New Day in the Debate on Comprehensive Immigration Reform
Press Statement

A New Day in the Debate on Comprehensive Immigration Reform

The Center for American Progress praises introduction of new legislation

WASHINGTON, D.C.—The Center for American Progress welcomes action in Congress today to renew the debate on comprehensive immigration reform. Representative Luis Gutierrez (D-IL) and Representative Jeff Flake (R-AZ) introduced bipartisan legislation this morning that seeks to replace our unregulated, unfair, and unworkable system.

While it is expected that the bill known as the Security Through Regularized Immigration and Vibrant Economy Act of 2007 contains principles and elements key to fixing our broken immigration system—a path to earned legalization, the protection of American and immigrant workers, the timely reunification of families, respect for due process, and enhanced enforcement—CAP will look to the details to ensure that the legislation can work both in theory and in practice.

“We welcome the STRIVE Act because it jump-starts action in Congress,” said Cassandra Butts, the Center’s Senior Vice President for Domestic Policy. “This has to be the year for immigration reform—our communities, states, and nation are clamoring for it.”

The American people want immigration reform. Poll after poll shows that Americans are impatient for federal action to fix the problem. Just last week, a Gallup/USA Today poll showed that when confronted with a series of policy choices, 59 percent of all Americans prefer a comprehensive solution with an earned path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants.

“It will take leadership from both sides of the aisle, including the White House, to make reform a reality,” said Dan Restrepo, Director for the Americas Project at the Center. “We hope that all members of Congress—particularly those that continue to think that we can simply enforce our way out of this problem—face reality, roll up their sleeves, and deliver legislation to fix our broken system.”

The Center supports immigration reform that 1) honors hard work and our immigrant tradition by providing earned legalization, not amnesty; 2) cracks down on border security and corporate abettors; and 3) protects all workers by creating a level playing field for American and immigrant workers, bringing order to the process and making worker visas work.

CAP is a member of the Coalition for Comprehensive Immigration Reform, a national campaign to get legislation enacted this year.

For additional information and comments, contact our immigration experts: Cassandra Butts, Dan Restrepo, and P.J. Crowley.

Visit’s the Center’s page on immigration for more information.