Daily Immigration Reform Backgrounder - March 31st

As the immigration reform debate continues in the House, the team at NDN/NPI offers up its most relevant background materials, and key press clips, updated daily.


  •  DHS's Alan Bersin on Deepening US-Mexico Ties: A/S Bersin highlighted how increasingly coordinated US-Mexico efforts on security that were “unthinkable 15 years ago” are paving the way for immigration reform and a greater focus on shared economic prosperity and global competitiveness.
  • Simon Op-Ed, "Some Thoughts on Senate Immigration Border Deal": Simon gives his thoughts on the Senate compromise on border enforcement: "This fall when the President signs a new immigration bill into law in a beautiful Rose Garden ceremony we may look back on the border deal announced yesterday as the savvy compromise which paved the way.   I hope that is the case.  But I am not convinced that what happened yesterday was strategically advantageous for the cause of reform.   While the Democrats received nothing new in the “deal,” the Republicans achieved something very significant – they got the Democrats to buy into one of the big lies of the anti-reform movement, a big lie which is now part of the bill and will be part of the life of the nation for years to come."
  • Kristian Op-Ed in NBC Latino: "Arizona Sheds Anti-Immigrant Policies; House Should Take Note:" Kristian gives his thoughts on the implications of shifting immigration politics in Arizona: "A combination of real improvements along the border, a series of high-profile legal and political defeats, and a rallying of business and community leaders against the social and economic costs of anti-immigrant politics is ushering in a new, post-SB1070 era in Arizona.  As House Republicans in recent days have committed to SB1070 style anti-immigrant politics, it would be wise for them to pay attention to what has happened in Arizona in recent years."
  • Also see this related article by Benjy Sarlin in MSNBC.
  • Simon Op-Ed in The Hill: "On the border, DHS has earned Congress' trust": Simon provides his analysis on a flurry of amendments being proposed to the Senate Immigration and border legislation. He argues that the Republican party must acknowledge the positive work done by the Department of Homeland Security at the border in order set realistic and achievable goals for the Senate immigration legislation.
  • Media call with Southwest Border Mayors to discuss real life impact of immigration policies: NDN hosted a media call with several southwest border mayors will be available to provide context to the ongoing immigration debate and how it impacts real people and the economic vitality of border communities.  They include, but are not limited to, the following: Arturo Garino - Mayor of Nogales, Arizona,  Raul Salinas - Mayor of Laredo, Texas, Greg Stanton - Mayor of Phoenix, Arizona, Tony Martinez - Mayor of Brownsville, Texas, Ken Miyagashima - Mayor of Las Cruces, New Mexico. Today NDN/NPI hosted a call with two of these regional leaders, Greg Stanton - Mayor of Phoenix, Arizona and Tony Martinez -Mayor of Brownsville, Texas to discuss the Senate immigration legislation and what it means for their communities. To listen to the call please click here.
  • Simon Op-Ed in Huffington Post: "The Administration's Border Strategy Is Working": Simon analyzes how the US-Mexico border is safer, trade with Mexico has exploded, the immigration system is better, and how the Senate bill will improve upon all of this.
  • Webinar Presentation: “How Improvements Along the Border, In Our Immigration System and In Mexico Are Impacting the National Immigration Debate”: Three factors that have paved the way for comprehensive immigration reform to happen now in the United States: the US-Mexico border is safer; the immigration system is better; and Mexico is modernizing and growing.
  • The presentation is also available in the attached pdf.
  • Report: "Realizing the Strategic National Value of our Trade, Tourism and Ports of Entry with Mexico"- The report states: “Trade between Mexico and the United States is among one of the great untold success stories of the last four years….The current negotiations in Congress on comprehensive immigration reform offer a key window of opportunity to expand our ability to facilitate legitimate trade and tourism with Mexico and grow our economy in the process.” 
  • Kristian Op-Ed in AZ Daily Star: "Updating Ports of Entry Will Help Preserve Our Vital Trade with Mexico": Kristian highlights important border provisions, including adding more customs agents and investing in US ports of entry, of the legislation currently in Congress that will benefit the Southern Arizona and overall US economies.
  • Kristian Op-Ed for VOXXI: “Reasons for Optimism on Border Section of Immigration Legislation”: Thanks to a successful increase in border security at the Southern border and a growing US-Mexico commercial relationship, the Senate Gang of Eight legislation was able to balance enforcement measures with investment in the critical needs of staffing at our ports of entry at the border. 
  • 21st Century Border Initiative website.


  • Immigration Reform in 2014? 6 Reasons We’re Optimistic: As 2013 draws to a close, immigration reform prospects among both parties and both chambers of Congress are brighter than ever. See our 6 reasons we believe that Congress can pass immigration reform legislation in 2014.
  • Reps. Joe Garcia (D), Jeff Denham (R), Steven Horsford (D) Discuss Imm Reform: NDN hosted Representatives Joe Garcia (D-FL), Jeff Denham (R-CA), and Steven Horsford (D-NV), as well as TV host and reporter Fernando Espuelas for a discussion of HR 15 and immigration reform’s prospects.  
  • With Long History of GOP Support, Immigration Reform Is Different: One of the main reasons significant progress on immigration is still possible in coming months is the long history of Republican leadership and support of the issue. 
  • President, Senate, House Dems Moved Forward on Imm Reform: #TimeIsNow for House GOP: NDN applauds the introduction of H.R. 15, the “Border Security, Economic Opportunity and Immigration Modernization Act.”  The President, Senate, and now House Dems have all taken action on immigration reform, now it is time for the House GOP to do its part.
  • NDN Statement: New House Immigration Reform Bill Brings Us Closer to Deal. (También en español.): “The introduction of this thoughtful new House immigration reform bill brings us one step closer to getting a bill signed into law in the coming months...."
  • Event Recap: Evaluating Immigration Reform’s Prospects: NDN and the New Policy Institute hosted long-time immigration advocates Tamar Jacoby and Frank Sharry along with NDN President Simon Rosenberg for an expert, thought-provoking, and optimistic discussion on the path forward for immigration reform.
  • Simon's latest op-ed in the Huffington Post: Immigration Reform Is Very Much Alive: Contrary to recent news accounts, we are closer to passing a meaningful immigration reform bill than at any point since John McCain and Ted Kennedy introduced their bill in 2005.
  • House GOP Has Passed Five Bills Out Of Committee: In case you missed it, here are the five bills that have passed out of committee in the House, which will be increasingly important as immigration reform moves forward.
  • Simon’s Statement Celebrating the Passage of the Senate Immigration Reform Bill: “Today, we join in celebrating the passage of the Senate immigration reform bill. As we’ve written before, we believe the bill at its core is ambitious, bold and super smart. It improves the legal immigration system, strengthens border security and interior enforcement, puts unauthorized immigrants on a path to citizenship and makes prudent investments in our ports of entry with Mexico which will create jobs on both sides of our border.”
  • Analysis: CBO Scoring of Immigration Bill A Game Changer: Simon gives his thought on the CBO score of the Senate Immigration Bill: "The new CBO report is a bit of a political game changer for the immigration debate.   While it has been long argued that the Senate Immigration Bill would do many things – improve border security and interior enforcement, resolve the issue of the 11 million undocumented immigrants living and working here in the US, improve the legal immigration system, smartly invest in expanding our trade with Mexico – we now know that it will also help improve the US economy, create jobs and significantly lower the budget deficit."
  • Simon's Statement on The House Judiciary Bill 'The SAFE Act:' “Today, the House Republicans declared their independence from Comprehensive Immigration Reform.  The self-deportation/attrition movement, which captured the Republican Party’s nominee in 2012, has re-asserted itself in American politics.  While the House deferred action vote was regrettable, the newly introduced Goodlatte-Gowdy Enforcement Bill (HR 2278), which calls for among other things, guns and body armor for ICE agents, is as true an expression of self-deportation/attrition as one will ever find in Congress. "
  • Simon's Statement on the Passage of the Border/Immigration Bill out of the Judiciary Committee- “After the Senate Judiciary Committee passed S.755 with a strong bipartisan majority yesterday, we remain optimistic that Congress will be able to pass a good, comprehensive border and immigration bill this year”
  • Immigration Reform: Bipartisanship's Improbable Poster Child- NDN President Simon Rosenberg and President and CEO of ImmigrationWorks USA Tamar Jacoby met at the New America Foundation to continue this bipartisan engagement on immigration reform. Watch their discussion of how the Senate “Gang of Eight” provides commonsense reform through compromise on border enforcement, an arduous path to citizenship, and a balance on employment-based visas.
  • Senator Michael Bennet Optimistic About Immigration Reform's Prospects- Senator Michael Bennet (D-Col.), joined by Congressman Joe Garcia (D, FL-26), on the progress of immigration legislation in Congress.