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Women Leaders in Congress Condemn Year of Inaction

Washington, D.C.   Today, on the eve of the one year anniversary of the passage of S. 744, the Senate comprehensive immigration reform bill, women leaders in Congress expressed their disappointment and frustration that Speaker Boehner and the House Republican leadership have failed to take action to fix our broken immigration system.  Despite overwhelming support for reform among the American people, Republicans continue to obstruct meaningful progress on this critical issue, undermining the health, well-being and economic security of millions of immigrant women and families across America.

“This week marks one year since the Senate passed comprehensive immigration reform legislation by a wide, bipartisan margin,” said Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard (CA-40), chair of the Congressional Women’s Working Group on Immigration Reform.  “In the year since that vote, House Republican Leaders have refused repeated requests from myself, my colleagues, and huge numbers of our fellow Americans to bring the Senate bill to a vote on the House floor.  The plain truth is that our current immigration system is not working for immigrant women and their families.  We badly need reforms that will enable these women to come out of the shadows and help to keep their families together.  That’s exactly what the Senate’s immigration reform bill will do.  For the sake of these women and the millions of American children they care for, protect, and support, we need a vote!”

“One year since the Senate passed a bipartisan comprehensive immigration reform bill, the House has yet to act,” said Congresswoman Gwen Moore (WI-4). “The failure of House Republicans to effectively address our immigration needs is not only hurting our economy, it’s unnecessarily injecting fear in our immigrant communities. Our friends, families and neighbors cannot wait another year for Congress to do its job. House Republicans are out of excuses. We must act now.”

“One year ago the Senate acted in a bipartisan fashion to take steps towards dealing with both border security and creating a path to citizenship for millions of aspiring Americans,” said Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (CT-3).  “That the House of Representatives has not taken action is a disgrace. The country is demanding action in an area where it is long overdue. The time to act is now.”

“It has been nearly one year since the Senate – Democrats and Republicans – voted to pass comprehensive immigration reform,” said Congresswoman Judy Chu (CA-27).  “Yet, House Republicans continue to turn their backs on the will of a majority of Americans. With each passing day, countless women and children continue to feel the devastating impacts of inaction. While the Republicans have stonewalled legislative action there have been more than 72,000 deportations of parents with U.S. citizen children.  The devastating consequences of these family separations will be felt for generations to come. I urge Speaker Boehner to listen to the American public and give them a vote on comprehensive immigration reform. “

“I continue to be extremely disappointed by the House Republicans’ refusal to act on comprehensive immigration reform,” said Congresswoman Dina Titus (NV-01). “Immigrant families and American businesses have now waited a full year since the Senate acted.  That is 365 days too many. Comprehensive immigration reform will strengthen Nevada’s economy, create jobs, promote innovation and entrepreneurship, protect workers, and provide a fair pathway to citizenship. I urge House Republicans to take immediate action on this critical issue.”

“It is incredibly frustrating that House Republicans continue to ignore our broken immigration system,” Congresswoman Linda Sánchez (CA-38). “Their inaction has very real human and economic costs. More than 11 million people who want to pay taxes and contribute to our great country are stuck in limbo. Each day that Republicans continue to delay action, is a day that approximately 1,100 families get separated. Passing comprehensive immigration reform would allow us to capitalize on the potential to create 159,000 new jobs and collect $1.25 billion in revenue over the next decade. It’s time for Speaker Boehner to cut the excuses- our country deserves a vote.”

“It has been one year since the Senate passed immigration reform legislation, yet House Republicans continue stalling, making excuses and failing to act,” Congresswoman Nydia M. Velázquez (NY-7).  “It is time to reform our nation’s broken immigration system in a way that honors families, fuels innovation and strengthens our economy for all Americans.”

“A year ago, the Senate did its job by passing a bipartisan immigration bill, and since then Republican leadership has sat on its hands,” said Congresswoman Michelle Lujan Grisham (NM-01).  “House Republicans have stalled any and all efforts to pass immigration reform. The time to act it now. Republicans need to join Democrats and work toward a comprehensive solution that will fix our broken immigration system, create jobs, and build a stronger economy.”

“Our traditional family values as Americans should hold true to all people in our country,” said Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez (CA-46). “The nucleus of any family is the mother and when we are in the business of breaking families apart, we lose those values that make our country great. It has been a year since the Senate acted, and House Republicans must now act and work with us to fix our broken immigration system.”

“In the past year since the Senate passed immigration reform, our broken immigration system has continued to hurt America’s families, businesses, and economy,” said Congresswoman Suzan DelBene (WA-01).  Businesses large and small are unable to hire the best and brightest from around the world, and farmers who need a stable workforce are calling for action on this issue. And in the absence of immigration reform, we are seeing too many families torn apart, and too many women and children separated from their families and forced to leave the country they call home. Our economy and millions of women and families can’t afford to wait any longer. We have a historic opportunity to fix the nation’s broken immigration system if House leadership would just let us vote.  The time to act is now.”

“After decades of inaction and gridlock, we were hopeful that the Senate’s passage of common sense bipartisan immigration reform would be a turning point in our mission to finally fix our nation’s broken system,” said Congresswoman Janice Hahn (CA-44). “One year later—we still haven’t gotten a vote in the House. It is past time for the House to act. Families across the country cannot wait any longer. The time is now to enact common sense, comprehensive immigration reform that reaffirms our values and honors our history as a nation of immigrants.”

“I ask Speaker Boehner and the House Majority to do what is in the best interest for our country and economy, and listen to what millions of Americans across the nation are asking Congress to do: To address and fix the nation’s immigration system,” said Congresswoman Gloria Negrete McLeod (CA-35).   

“There are serious consequences to the failure of the House of Representatives to enact comprehensive immigration reform: millions of families threatened with deportation, men and women who want to work but cannot obtain legal authorization, parents who are afraid to send their children to school, and crime victims who cannot contact the police. We have the ability to resolve these problems, by negotiating in good faith for the benefit of our nation,” said Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke (NY-9).

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