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“The Right and the Smart Thing to Do” – America’s Voice Reacts to Potential of Pro-Immigrant Executive Actions

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Washington, DC — As the Wall Street Journal and Reuters highlight, the Biden administration is exploring executive actions to grant legal status and work permits to some long-settled undocumented immigrants, including those married to American citizens. The momentum behind this affirmative policy vision is driven by American families facing the barriers erected by our unforgiving and out-of-date immigration system. There is a growing chorus of experts and advocates speaking out about the importance of such relief and the positive impact on American families, our economy, and President Biden’s political prospects. 

Yesterday, national advocacy leaders held a press conference calling on President Biden to protect American families and use his executive authority to offer legal pathways that would allow Dreamers, spouses of U.S. citizens and other long-settled immigrants to continue working and contributing to their families and communities.

According to Vanessa Cárdenas, Executive Director of America’s Voice:

“We strongly endorse any measures the Biden Administration would take to legalize long-established and hard-working immigrants. Immigrants, including those in mixed-status families potentially affected by executive action, are doing hard and unappreciated work to pursue their American dreams while contributing and building a stronger nation for all of us. 

In poll after poll, it remains clear that the majority of the American people support legalizing immigrants who have been in the U.S. for a long time. Such support remains broad-based and durable, with a strong majority of the public supporting a balanced approach to immigration instead of enforcement-only alternatives. 

Refocusing on the real story of immigrants and immigration in America and advancing an accompanying policy agenda would also draw a forceful contrast with Donald Trump and his rabid and relentless anti-immigration lies and conspiracies. Immigration is a strength of America now and throughout our history. In 2012, President Obama and then Vice President Biden understood the need to reset the immigration issue and announced DACA for Dreamers in the summer of that year, helping reinvigorate their campaign in the process. President Biden should take a lesson from his own political past and take action to reset the narrative around immigrants and immigration in 2024. Delivering on this potential step forward would be the right and the smart thing to do.”

Read key excerpts below from Michelle Hackman’s article in The Wall Street Journal, “Biden Weighs Giving Legal Status to Immigrant Spouses of U.S. Citizens”:

“There is a growing recognition among Biden’s top political advisers that the president could benefit from taking a positive step on immigration to contrast with his tough talk on the issue, and with an expected executive order aiming to sharply curb illegal crossings at the southern border. 

Officials inside the White House and at the Department of Homeland Security have been studying a range of proposals to provide work permits or deportation relief for millions of undocumented immigrants who have lived and worked in the U.S. for a long time. They have zeroed in on the population of mixed-status families, where typically the children and one parent are U.S. citizens.”