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The following is a statement from Frank Sharry, Executive Director of America’s Voice, regarding President Trump’s latest racist remarks and the current state-of-play on the fight to protect Dreamers as well as Salvadorans, Haitians, and those who currently have Temporary Protected Status:
This is no longer just an immigration policy debate. This is a moment of moral reckoning. Every member of Congress must choose: do you stand with the America of E Pluribus Unum – Out of Many, One – or do you stand with racism and bigotry?
The President has created this crisis. He ended DACA for Dreamers and is ending Temporary Protected Status for Salvadorans, Haitians and others, putting more than one million immigrants – deeply-rooted young people and families who are working hard, paying taxes, attending college and contributing, all while having legal status – on a path to deportation. Then he inflames the debate by making racist statements that cut to the core of our identity as a nation based on ideas and ideals, not blood and soil.
Trump’s agenda is clear. He wants to kick out and keep out people of color in pursuit of a white supremacist agenda. In the process, he is defining the GOP’s values. Congressional Republicans now have an opportunity and an obligation to distinguish and define themselves by making the right and moral decision: stand up for the simple yet profound notion that America at its best is a community of diverse people where we respect each other based on contribution and character and reject the dehumanization of our friends, family and neighbors based on birthplace or background.
The upcoming debate on Dreamers and TPS holders is now a referendum on who we are – as individuals, as leaders and as Americans. Rhetoric and hand wringing alone will not atone for the racist stain that Trump has splashed on our nation. It’s a time for choosing. It’s a time for action.