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Extending and Expanding Citizenship to Those Excluded is America at its Best

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Biden holds citizenship ceremony at White House on eve of July 4th

Washington, DC – This afternoon, President Biden will host a naturalization ceremony at the White House, where twenty-one immigrants will take the oath of American citizenship.

The following is a statement from Frank Sharry, Executive Director of America’s Voice, ahead of this afternoon’s ceremony:

America is at its best when we expand full citizenship to those previously excluded. We are at our best when ‘We the People’ means all of us.

In her brilliant poem at the Biden inauguration, Amanda Gorman described America as a ‘nation that isn’t broken, but simply unfinished.’ Every act of extending and expanding citizenship moves us closer to fulfilling the promise of America. 

Immigrants and refugees have come from every corner of the globe to make new lives and to make America better. But we live in a troubled time. The question of who gets to be a full citizen and who gets to decide is contested, threatened by those disloyal to the notion of America as a multiracial and multiethnic democracy. We watch in horror as the pillars of our democracy come under attack.  

The twenty-one new Americans who will take the oath of citizenship today in the White House should be an inspiration to those of us committed to extending and defending democracy. Let us commit to extending full citizenship to those currently shut out of its rights and responsibilities. Let us formally recognize deeply-rooted undocumented immigrants as the Americans they already are. Let us complete the long overdue task this year.