Top Republicans want legal status for immigrants

ImmigrationThe broad framework for an overhaul of the immigration laws in the United States outlined by the leadership of the Republican Party in the House of Representatives will this week ask for a pathway to legal status, rather than citizenship, for the great majority of the estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants that are currently living illegally in the country, aides claim; with a pathway to US citizenship to be offered to those who were brought to the US when they were children.

However, many conservative voices and leading strategists are urging for the push for immigration reform to be delayed or cancelled altogether to avoid the midterm elections being subsumed by an internal party rupture over the issue.

Despite the criticism, the reality remains that the Latino community has been abandoning the Republican Party in droves due to their attitude to immigration and the new “statement of principles” is a clear attempt to try and reverse that trend. The statement, which is little more than a page, criticizes the higher education system in the United States for educating the best and brightest students in the world, who are then unable to get a green card and are forced to return to their home countries.

Business groups are strongly behind the Republican Party leaders who believe that an immigration overhaul is crucial if they have any chance of clawing back lost ground with those in the Latino community and other immigrant voters.