Amnesty Supporter: Real Immigration Reform Doesn’t Have To Include Amnesty

Comprehensive immigration reform is still a priority for the House this year, at least according to Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers.  Nearly everyone agrees that the current legal immigration system is burdensome and expensive, and in dire need of reform.  Unfortunately, President Obama and others insist that amnesty (definition here) must be part of any reform of the legal immigration system.  Fortunately, there is a sign that President Obama’s insistence on amnesty does not extend to every proponent of amnesty.

Alfonso Aguilar is the executive director of the Latino Partnership for Conservative Principles and a former chief of the U.S. Office of Citizenship under President George W. Bush.  He is also a prominent supporter of a so-called path to citizenship.  Recently, he conceded that amnesty need not be included in legislation to achieve real reform of the legal immigration system.  

He made the comments during a recent radio interview, which also included Heritage Action communications director Dan Holler.  Reiterating one of Holler’s points, the host posed the question: “Is it possible to have immigration reform without what you refer to as a path to citizenship?”

Aguilar responded:

Yeah, I’m not talking, and I don’t think Republicans are talking about an earned path to citizenship. (emphasis added) What Chairman Goodlatte, and I must say the leadership has been talking about legalization, uh, Cathy McMorris Rodgers was on the Univision Sunday Show last Sunday saying that it is a priority for the leadership.  So I think that they don’t support a special path to citizenship, meaning that you would provide those who legalize a direct path to citizenship, but it wouldn’t close the door to citizenship.  Those who legalize could choose eventually to become citizens, but to do that, they would have to follow the current process under our current law.

He’s right.  Amnesty does not have to be part of any immigration reform proposal. Now the only question is, will President Obama take it off the table?

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