For some believers and church leaders, opposing Alabama’s toughest-in-the-nation law against illegal immigration is a chance for Bible Belt redemption. During the civil rights movement of the 1950s and ’60s, many state churches didn’t join the fight to end Jim Crow laws and racial segregation.

Americans are urging Congress and the Obama administration to confront the challenge of cutting unnecessary spending while creating jobs. Some in Congress aren’t getting the message.

Immigration has become a political hot potato, often prompting heated debate over border security, illegal workers, police responsibilities and other issues. But a conference this week at Wayne State University centered on how immigrants could be a major asset in helping Michigan to rebuild its tattered economy.

Sen. Chuck Schumer is attempting to revive moribund efforts to pass a comprehensive immigration bill, telling POLITICO Monday that he will hold a hearing next week focused on the economic argument for an immigration overhaul. It’s a subtle shift in emphasis for immigration reform advocates, who met recently with Schumer (D-N.Y.) to plot a strategy.

You may hear that “immigration reform is dead” in the 112th Congress. But in reality, it’s very much alive. It will just probably happen in pieces, not “comprehensively.” A trend for new bipartisan immigration policy is emerging that focuses on two immigration issues: granting more green cards to educated immigrants; and increasing internal enforcement.

Why is Washington at a standstill over immigration reform? Dealing with immigration is harder than a week-old bagel. Rewriting immigration laws requires the kind of bipartisan cooperation that remains elusive inside the Beltway.

President Obama laid out a plan in El Paso on Tuesday that would continue to strengthen security along the southwest border, make it harder for businesses to hire illegal immigrants and overhaul the nation’s visa system to attract better-educated foreigners to study and work in the United States.

There is nothing to dislike about the Illinois Dream Act, which recently was passed by the Illinois Senate and is expected to move to the House for a vote in the next few weeks. The state’s Dream Act [provides] approximately 95,000 illegal immigrant youths with the opportunity to get an education. And just to be clear, this is to be accomplished without spending any taxpayer money.

President Barack Obama will use the Texas-Mexico border as a backdrop on Tuesday to call again on Congress to fix the nation’s broken immigration system and address the 11 million immigrants in this country illegally – including 1.6 million in Texas. Obama is traveling to El Paso, across the border from violence-wracked Ciudad Juarez.

Stepping up his demand to change the nation’s immigration laws, President Barack Obama on Friday promised graduates at a vast, multicultural community college that he’ll keep working to help students not legally in the U.S. to become American citizens.