Quick Hit Ashlee Rezin Friday June 28th, 2013, 2:42pm

Immigration Advocates Target Illinois Republicans As Bill Heads To GOP-Led House (VIDEO)

While the U.S. Senate was voting in favor of an immigration reform package that could provide a pathway to citizenship for America’s 11 million undocumented immigrants, supporters of the legislation were targeting Illinois Republican leaders at a rally in downtown Chicago Thursday.

More than 100 immigration reform advocates at Thursday’s rally vowed to apply pressure on U.S. Rep. Peter Roskam (R, IL-6), who serves as the House chief deputy whip, and Illinois GOP Party Chairman Jack Dorgan, to demand their support of comprehensive immigration reform.

Passed by a 68-32 vote in the Senate Thursday, the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act Of 2013, SB 744, now advances to the Republican-controlled U.S. House.

“It’s political suicide if they don’t support immigration reform,” said Yesenia Sanchez, executive director of the West Suburban Action Project (Proyecto de Accion de los Suburbios del Oeste, PASO). “It would not be a very smart decision to stand against this bill. The time is now for commonsense immigration reform and elections are coming up. Immigrants and their allies vote, too.”

Cheers resonated throughout the crowd, which rallied at Illinois GOP headquarters, at 55 West Monroe St., when details of the Senate vote were announced. 

“I’m happy the bill passed, but we now need to call on Republicans to support this bill and ensure that our broken immigration system is once and for all fixed,” said Sanchez.

Drafted by a bipartisan group of senators called the Gang of Eight, which includes U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL), the immigration reform legislation provides a pathway to citizenship via a five or 10-year wait before undocumented immigrants can file for a green card. Applicants must pay $2,000 in fines, fulfill the requirement of having a job and pass a background check. While waiting for a green card, or legal permanent resident status, applicants are labeled a “registered provisional immigrant” (RPI). After an additional three year-wait, they would be able to apply for citizenship.

“Immigrant communities are looking for solutions, not continued excuses from conservative members who don’t recognize what we need,” said Sanchez, who applauded when she learned U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk (R-IL) supported the legislation.

Kirk has, for weeks, been a target of immigrant rights’ activists. Earlier this month he voted against discussion of the immigration reform package, saying that stronger border enforcement would need to be implemented before he could vote “yes” on the bill.

To the dismay of several demonstrators on Thursday, the Corker-Hoeven amendment, which was approved last week, does just that.

“We’re tired of conservative legislators using the border as an excuse to not take a commonsense position on immigration reform,” said Sanchez. “Our border is the strongest it has ever been, and this excuse is no longer valid. The future of their party is reliant upon their support for immigration reform.”

Under the amendment, before any green card can be issued through the immigration reform bill, a series of border strengthening thresholds must first be met. The plan calls for an increase of the number of border enforcement agents, from 20,000 to 40,000, and requires the construction of 700 miles of fencing along the southern border. If the immigration reform bill passes with the amendment, approximately $40 billion will be spent on reinforcing America’s borders over ten years.

“This is a great moment, but we are only halfway to the finish line,” said U.S. Rep. Luis Gutiérrez (D, IL-4), in a statement following the Senate’s vote Thursday. “I believe that a bipartisan approach in the House is the only approach that will solve the political problem facing the Republican Party -- that their positions on immigration make them look anti-immigrant and anti-Latino.  House Republicans cannot change this perception significantly unless they work with House Democrats to reach a bipartisan solution.”

Gutiérrez added that the “clock is ticking” for “the 1,400 people deported every day we fail to enact immigration reform."

Under the Obama administration, deportations have reached record-breaking highs. More than 400,000 people were deported during fiscal year 2012, an increase of 3 percent from 2011. According to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), 55 percent of the people deported were convicted criminals. 

In a statement, President Barack Obama warned the bill’s supporters to "keep a watchful eye" as opponents in the U.S. House will likely “try their hardest to pull this bipartisan effort apart.”

"The bipartisan bill that passed today was a compromise. By definition, nobody got everything they wanted. Not Democrats. Not Republicans. Not me," Obama said. "But the Senate bill is consistent with the key principles for commonsense reform that I - and many others - have repeatedly laid out."

Meanwhile, Jennifer Velazquez, a community organizer with the Logan Square Neighborhood Association (LSNA), hasn’t seen her father since January 2012 when he was deported back to Mexico.

“If immigration reform passes, my family could be reunited again,” said Velazquez, 19, adding that her father lived in Chicago for 18 years before he was deported.

Without her father’s income, Velazquez said the weight of providing for her three younger siblings and mother, who has lived in America for more than 20 years, but is also undocumented, rests solely on her shoulders. She was born in the U.S. and thus, is a citizen.

“Not only could my father apply for citizenship if comprehensive immigration reform is passed, but maybe my mom could become a citizen, too,” she said. “Then I might have less responsibilities, and could focus on school.”

Here’s more from Velazquez, who helped organize Thursday’s rally:

The LSNA and PASO joined forces with the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights (ICIRR) to host Thursday’s rally. Other contributing organizations include The Resurrection Project (TRP), the Albany Park Neighborhood Council (APNC) and the Southwest Organizing Project (SWOP).

“We are here to let Representative Roskam, and other Republicans, know, they cannot keep ignoring the power of the immigrant vote,” said Mayra Sarabia, a community organizer with SWOP. “They must support comprehensive immigration reform now.”

Sarabia, who traveled to America from Mexico more than two decades ago, added that she has two U.S.-born children that will be of voting age come the 2016 presidential election, and one of her daughters will be voting in the 2014 congressional races.

The U.S. House is comprised of 234 Republicans and 201 Democrats, leaving many, including Sarabia, to question whether the lower chamber is poised to support immigration reform.

According to House Speaker John Boehner (R, OH-8), who spoke with reporters moments before the Senate vote, "the House is not going to take up and vote on whatever the Senate passes." Instead, he says the chamber is working on its own immigration reform bill. 

Sarabia chanted during Thursday’s rally that the GOP should “remember November.” She, and several other organizers, encouraged rally participants to call Roskam's office every day and demand his support.

“My children will remember the legislators who helped her mother live a life of dignity,” she said. “They will remember Republicans’ vote for comprehensive immigration reform.”

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1986 Amnesty Deja Vu

Sen. Ted Cruz said after the senate legislation the following about Senate majority decision: "Sadly, this bill won't fix the problem with our immigration system and will only encourage more illegal immigration and human suffering and added,

“I strongly support commonsense immigration reform that secures the border before legalization, fixes our legal immigration system, and upholds the rule of law. This bill isn't it."

All those who signed onto this bill are warned of the consequences, because hardly anybody read the bill outright before approving it? All these Senate Republicans have risked their political future. Alexander, Tenn.; Ayotte, N.H.; Chiesa, N.J.; Collins, Maine; Corker, Tenn.; Flake, Ariz.; Graham, S.C.; Hatch, Utah; Heller, Nev.; Hoeven, N.D.; Kirk, Ill.; McCain, Ariz.; Murkowski, Alaska; Rubio, Fla. Then having that obnoxious witch Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano with her hand on the switch, with full authority is tantamount to a catastrophe in the future. I wouldn’t trust this loose cannon advocate, than I could spit or puke. She has shown her irritation to the “Rule of law” by releasing dangerous illegal aliens felons back on the streets, using the Sequester as a flimsy excuse. With this Political appointee the chances of immigration being fully enforced with her in control, is a giant mistake.

This De facto amnesty is a malfunction to enforce the nation's immigration laws on the interior of the United States. It is not a border issue. Chris Crane, president of the union who represents 7,000 immigration and customs enforcement officers stated, it cannot and will not end as a result of amplified border security. It must be determined through increased interior enforcement? But the fact is that the man who knew just about everything governing the border was ignored by the Gang of Eight.

To me is blatantly obvious that those already here remain hidden from view and not detectable, which the “OVERSTAYS”. Just like so many weak parts of law, such as unlawful entry, being no more than a civil misdemeanor and not a federal FELONY? In my view so many flaws in the laws are deliberate. So instead of building up the borders with 20.000 more U.S. immigration agents at the borders, split them up and place 10.000 for internal enforcement. Remind your representatives by phoning any of the100 Senators and 435 Representatives for State or Federal at toll-free number -- 1-888-978-3094--.You may phone the United States Capitol circuit at (202) 224-3121. A terminal operator will connect you directly with the Senate office or just about anybody in Washington you request to speak with, after being confronted by an aid.

‘Do what you will is the whole of the law’, seems to be the mantra of the Obama administration and unless you read the Senate Immigration law, you will find out all the gaping holes, special waivers, omissions that makes this reform bill passed to the House valueless for serious enforcement.

CLEARLY A GOOD PROPORTION OF AMERICANS HAVE NO CONCEPTION OF IMMIGRATION LAW AND ITS STRUCTURE?

There are too many inconsistencies, as the act does not name the border fence as Double layer parallel running fences. Why 20.000 agents at the border, when interior enforcement would be better served, with at least 10.000 to run down incorrigible employers who will be hiring thousands of overstays and illegal aliens claiming legal status who will be stealing jobs from Americans, as businesses will not have offer the health care, as a benefit. Obamacare has major flaws and even huge cost that as yet cannot be imagined. Every American of African descent, European descent,, Hispanic descent, Latin descent, Caribbean descent, Asian descent and every hemisphere who are going to suffer under this soiled immigration act and likely to be lose their job to new legalized people, especially in the working class. The only non-sufferers are the welfare leeches, except that are really handicapped or sick. I am sure it won’t be too long, before epithets are addressed to me and the race card; they have nothing else in their vocabulary.

YOU CAN ALSO BLAST FAXES AT numbersusa and write your own message or copy the one exhibited. At americanpatrol is a daily report from newspapers across the country, illustrating the huge rise in drunk drivers, and other heinous crimes the left oriented press keeps suppressed. For legal information about corruption in Washington and in state assemblies at judicialwatch Also Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas has set up an email address for people to contact if they believe they were targeted by the IRS. That address is: IRSTarget@Cruz.Senate.gov. Senator Ted Cruz of Texas has launched a national petition. It is at SecureBordersNow,” Cruz said. “In just a week, we’ve have reached 150,000 people from all over the country sign that petition speaking out to say ‘Do not do legalization first. Secure the borders first, fix the problem.”?

THANK YOU SENATOR TED CRUZ.