If proponents of comprehensive immigration reform were under the impression that recent legislation was a signal of victory, a New York Times article published this morning should temper those expectations and serve as an important reminder that the fight for fair and just reform is nowhere near won.
The article is alarming for several reasons. First, it highlights an all too familiar tactic employed by opponents of CIR, which is to create obstacles and poison pill disincentives that dissuade conservative house members from voting for reform. Second, it reiterates that every effort will be made to slow down the legislation’s progress by proposing numerous amendments designed to undermine the fundamental aspects of the Bill. Third, it mentions a controversial Report released by the ultra conservative Heritage Foundation that estimates the taxpayer cost as high as $6.3 trillion.
The strategies mentioned above are calculated and effective and meant to derail the momentum behind the recent legislation. Moreover they are supported by powerful interest groups who want to see comprehensive immigration reform fail. These groups are motivated, mobilized, well funded, and prepared for a dirty fight.
Therefore, those of us who support CIR must be prepared for the same. We must be mobilized, motivated, and under no illusion that the battle has been won. Now more than ever we need to write our elected representatives and convince our neighbors to do the same. We need to organize from the grass roots all the way up to the White House. The fight is on and your voice is your weapon. Make sure yours is louder than theirs.