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“The Fight is Not Over” Senator Menendez and Advocates Respond to Parliamentarian Decision on Immigration

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You can listen to a recording of the press call here


On a press call today, Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ), a long-time champion for immigration reform, joined immigrant advocates to analyze and discuss the Senate Parliamentarian’s initial decision about inclusion of immigration measures in budget reconciliation. The stakes are higher than ever for millions of undocumented immigrants: permanent status, citizenship and freedom, or detention, deportation and family separation. 

Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ), said, “We were all hugely disappointed on the decision the Parliamentarian gave last night, but for me at least, this really does not mean this process is over. She gave her view on only one approach on including a pathway to citizenship in reconciliation. This is not the end. We are not going to take ‘no’ for an answer. We are committed to fighting for inclusive and humane immigration reform. We are not changing our priorities or our mission. We will continue to fight on. We would not be on the path towards recovery without our immigrant communities. We have a clear case of the positive economic impact of immigration in our country, and we are committed to doing everything we can to deliver for our immigrant community.”

We believe that our proposal is permissible in budget reconciliation,” Lorella Praeli, Co-President, Community Change Action, said, “and we support their good-faith engagement with the Parliamentarian’s ruling. But Democrats do not get to hide behind the Parliamentarian this year. The ball is in their court. There are moral, political, and economic imperatives for them to deliver. They have the support of the majority of the American people. They have the White House, the Senate, and the House. They will not get brownie points or participation trophies for trying. This is about the real lives of millions of people – it’s not just a procedural fight. Our expectation is that our elected officials do everything in their power to make sure that we win protections for millions of undocumented people this year.”

Greisa Martinez Rosas, Executive Director, United We Dream Action, said, “Majority Leader Schumer, Speaker Pelosi, President Biden, and Vice President Harris hold all the power to do the right thing and deliver on their promises of citizenship for millions. They must remember that brave and powerful Black and Brown advocates worked tirelessly to put them in their positions of power. It’s time for Democrats to show the same bravery. The members of United We Dream are ready to continue to put our bodies on the line, our stories on the line, and our vision, to ensure that millions of people have the protections they need. We will not accept anything less.”

Kerri Talbot, Deputy Director, The Immigration Hub, said, “As you’ve heard from Democratic congressional leaders from across the country, we are committed to getting to a ‘yes’ on lasting protections for millions of undocumented immigrants who are critical to America’s future. We feel strongly that we can get all Democrats on board with the next proposal to the Senate Parliamentarian.”