The Norman Transcript

Editorials

November 6, 2013

Time to move forward on immigration reform

NORMAN — The chance of serious immigration reform passing in these closing weeks of Congress depends on how optimistic you are.

The gloomier prediction is that reform is impossible as many House Republicans are opposed to any bill that provides what they call “amnesty” for the 11 million undocumented immigrants already in the country. The president and Democrats are pushing bills that provide a legal path to citizenship for those who go through the steps and don’t have serious criminal records.

The more optimistic view, growing in recent days, is that more House Republicans — still stung by the rejection of Hispanic voters in the last election — are signing onto the Democrat’s bill.

Let us all be optimistic.

Major immigration reform is not a partisan issue for most Americans. Conservative activists — Evangelical leaders, business executives, law enforcement officials — recently lobbied Congress to pass a major reform bill and to reject the call from some GOP members who want to break apart immigration issues into separate bills.

The best immigration bill would allow law-abiding undocumented immigrants to pursue citizenship. It would continue to provide resources for border security. It would allow law-abiding children of unauthorized immigrants to attend college and serve in the military. And it would create a robust temporary guest-worker program that would allow for enough foreign workers needed in many American industries.

Besides the path to citizenship, another major sticking point in negotiations has been over the level of resources aimed at border security, with many GOP members calling for heightened security. But that view collides with the facts.

According to the Migration Policy Institute, America already spends $18 billion a year on border enforcement, more than all other federal criminal-law-enforcement agencies combined.

And while border security is important, the fact is that half of unauthorized immigrants in the country did not sneak across the border, but overstayed their visas.

Major immigration reform is long overdue and necessary for the economic, social, moral and security benefits of the country.

— The Mankato (Minn.) Free Press

Breaking news, severe weather alerts, AMBER alerts, sports scores from The Norman Transcript are available as text messages right to your phone or mobile device. You decide which type of alerts you want to receive. Find out more or to signup, click here.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Editorials
  • Dancing forward

    The official motto for Mike Fowler’s chairmanship of the Norman Chamber of Commerce is “Moving Norman Forward.” But after Thursday night’s annual banquet, the sub-theme should be, “Let’s Dance, Norman.” More than 500 chamber members and ...

    April 19, 2014

  • Local control or not?

    Oklahoma lawmakers are a fickle bunch when it comes to issues of local control. Sometimes they want it and other times they do not....

    April 19, 2014

  • There’s no need to fix system that’s working

    Lawmaker attempts to alter the way judges are selected are being challenged by the state’s lawyers. More than 1,800 signatures on a state bar association petition urging a “no” vote on Senate Joint Resolution 21 have been gathered in just ...

    April 18, 2014

  • On the side of openness

    Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin has been criticized for failing to release emails and other information sought by press outlets who believe it was covered under the state’s Open Records Act. Now, Fallin is coming down on the side of keeping the ...

    April 18, 2014

  • A raise for troopers, but what about others?

    Oklahoma Highway Patrol troopers could see an increase in their paychecks during the state’s next fiscal year, which begins in July....

    April 17, 2014

  • Top honors for NPS

    Top honors keep rolling in for both of Norman’s high schools. The district learned this past week that Norman High School and Norman North High School have been recognized as two of the most rigorous high schools in the country and in the ...

    April 16, 2014

  • Wind power bursting

    There are a few wind generators dotting the Norman skyline, but western and northwestern Oklahoma makes up for the deficit here. An industry group this week said Oklahoma ranks fourth nationally in the amount of wind-generated ...

    April 16, 2014

  • Protect your home from wildfires

    To most people, fuel is what you put into your gas tank. To firefighters, it means something altogether different. To people who make a living putting out fires, fuel is that material that feeds wildfires — and there is an abundance of it ...

    April 12, 2014

  • Let’s toast: Main Street bridge nearly complete

    It was January 2013 when crews began knocking down the Main Street bridge over Interstate 35. The timeline on completion has always been this May. If everything comes together and the weather holds for the next few days, the overpass and ...

    April 11, 2014

  • Yes to Capitol and museum

    Two major spending bills have emerged from the powerful House Appropriations and Budget Committee headed by Norman Rep. Scott Martin. Both are up for passage in the full House of Representatives. We believe both deserve passage....

    April 11, 2014