Open letter No. 35: Immigration reform now!

Felicia Persaud | 7/11/2013, 12:30 p.m. | Updated on 7/11/2013, 12:30 p.m.
Dear Mr. President, The Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act (S 744) is way too important to let ...
Felicia Persaud

Dear Mr. President,

The Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act (S 744) is way too important to let it die in the House because John Boehner does not have the “cohones” to show real leadership. It is why you must get Vice President Joe Biden to rally everyone, much like he did during the fiscal cliff crisis and the debt ceiling crisis.

It is time to get to work on this issue, which has clearly divided the Republic Party and leaves a gap to be harnessed for the good of all America and Americans! Business owners like Brian Gerrits, who managed two dairies that own more than 5,000 cows in Wisconsin, and church leaders in the Bible Belt are among Republicans who are backing the immigration overhaul heading to the U.S. House, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The farmers represent a powerful force pushing for an immigration overhaul because of their heavy reliance on immigrant labor, and farmers say they can’t find enough U.S. citizens to fill the shifts needed to milk cows three times a day. The Wisconsin dairy farmers are part of a larger group of business owners across this country who need this bill passed—from the farm lands to Silicon Valley. They are the ones who must be harnessed and used to push their party leadership in the House to not delay this measure because of politics.

Let them tell John Boehner and the tea party that it is not enough to hide behind the lies of enhanced border security first, especially when the Senate bill clearly states that border security also would be greatly bolstered with the size of the patrol nearly doubling to about 40,000 agents, as well as adding additional money for high-tech equipment.

Mr. President, now is the time to ensure the hard work done by the “Gang of Eight” on the 1,200-page comprehensive immigration reform bill is not for naught and to prove that you really mean what you say, that your commitment to

comprehensive immigration reform is alive now more than ever! You need to get out and sell the key points for this bill beyond what is being sold as gospel to many conservative Americans.

This is no amnesty; it simply is a solution to dealing with the 11 million undocumented migrants while creating a visa system to prevent future illegal migration. Let them also know about the clauses in this bill that protects the American workers, that allows for entrepreneurial and investment visas and the new E-3 visa for Irish non-degreed individuals.

And while you are at it, tell them also that S. 744 proposes to eliminate the per country quota limits on employment-based immigrant (green card) visas; the diversity visa lottery; and the phasing out of the sibling category of family immigration, limiting future legal migration to largely skilled migrants.

The coffers of the Social Security Administration, which could gain $276 billion in revenue over the next 10 years while costing only $33 billion, is also depending on you. We can do this. We must do this!


Felicia Persaud

The writer is founder of NewsAmericasNow, CaribPR Wire and Hard Beat