Today, at 3 PM EST at Lafayette Square, in front of the White House, immigrant advocates from Casa de Maryland and Familia Latina Unida will by joined by Rep. Luis Gutierrez and other allies to send our President an important message: STOP THE DEPORTATIONS.

Representative Lamar Smith and Rep. Elton Gallegly have really outdone themselves this time.

Following through on a campaign promise, Gov. Jerry Brown signed a law Monday easing access to privately funded financial aid for undocumented college students. He also signaled that he was likely to back a more controversial measure allowing those students to seek state-funded tuition aid in the future.

With an estimated 4 million American citizen children having at least one undocumented immigrant parent, American children are in urgent need of immigration reform. We need public policy that ensures these children will be financially and physically cared for in their land of origin.

Cities, states and nations now compete in a global talent pool — where high-skilled workers help create and attract employment opportunities. If the United States is going to create new jobs, and succeed competitively, we need to adapt to this rapidly changing global economy.

For many, talk of any kind of reform inevitably and inaccurately leads to the dreaded A-word —amnesty — even though recent Democratic-backed bills introduced in both the House and Senate ask that immigrants meet certain conditions.

President Obama told Hispanics today he is with them on overhauling the nation’s immigration laws — but he won’t use executive orders to alter the law on things such as deportations. “Now, I know some people want me to bypass Congress and change the laws on my own,” Obama told members of a National Council of La Raza conference.

Republicans need to come forward to pass immigration reform, President Barack Obama said at a meeting of Latino advocacy group National Council of La Raza on Monday, continuing his push for Latino votes in 2012 amid concern over his record deportations of undocumented immigrants.

Tomorrow, Lamar Smith will hold a hearing on the HALT Act, legislation designed to bully President Obama. The HALT Act would prevent the use of discretion by the President in immigration cases. Smith’s expert witness is Senator David Vitter, who knows a thing or two about prosecutorial discretion.

At the NCLR Conference, the crowd sent President Obama a powerful message by chanting “Yes, You Can!” on immigration authority.