by Moses Apsan, Esq.
Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-Ill.) is on the move again with a 20-city tour aimed at at maintaining pressure on President Obama and Congress to resolve the problems associated with the mounting number of deportations and congress’ and more specifically Obama for his dismal failure in carrying out promises enact immigration reform.
Gutierrez said in Boston Obama "may" have trouble with the Hispanic vote in 2012 if he does not deliver on promises for an immigration overhaul
Congressman Gutierrez supports a “parole-in-place” program that would permit illegal aliens with children to live in the United States legally. At the media event in Rhode Island, Gutierrez explained his plans to collect statements from illegal aliens and send them to President Obama in an effort to “persuade” the President to “use the discretion the law already confers on him” to create and carry out the Congressman’s “parole-in-place” scheme.
According to the Rhode Island Providence Journal-Bulletin, Gutierrez said : "In just one year with Barack Obama as president, Gutierrez pointed out, 400,000 people were deported from the United States -- more people than any other president has deported, he asserted. And most of them, Gutierrez said, are not violent criminals, but law-abiding, hard-working people."
Gutierrez, the chairman of the Democratic Caucus Immigration Task Force for the 110th Congress, is also a chairman of the Immigration Task Force established by the United Association for Labor Education. Over the past few years Gutierrez has established himself as a zealous advocate for comprehensive immigration reform
In December 2009, Gutierrez, in introducing his new Comprehensive Immigration Reform bill said," "The time for waiting is over. This bill will be presented before Congress recesses for the holidays so that there is no excuse for inaction in the New Year. “ It’s failure to become law has not hindered Gutierrez’s unstoppable efforts.
A Boston Globe report on Gutierrez's Sunday town hall: “A Democratic congressman from President Obama's home state gathered immigrants in East Boston yesterday to draw attention to the plight of families that fear being divided by deportation and to warn that the president risks losing the support of the Latino community if he doesn't deliver on immigration reform.”
Gutierrez spoke in adamant tones, "We kind of made a covenant. There was a compact. You came to us and you said, 'Elect me president of the United States and I will be your champion for immigration reform,' '' said Representative Luis V. of Illinois. "Wherever I go, people say to me, 'Luis, when's he going to keep his promise?' ''
Gutierrez explained that most immigrants want to support Obama. However, after the on going increase in deportations e under Obama’s administration and finding out about of the Secure Communities program, Gutierrez said that he will challenge the president to provide more balance through comprehensive immigration reform.
Meanwhile, the White House, while portraying itself to be in favor of compassionate immigration laws, is insisting lawmakers to stay away from Gutierrez’s campaign to impede deportations involving U.S.-born children of illegal immigrants. Such a move jeopardizes Latino votes crucial to President Barack Obama’s re-election.
In a recent March 31 news conference several members of Congress scheduled to attend Gutierrez’s meeting said administration officials contacted them to voice unease about their involvement. These lawmakers logically opined that until U.S. immigration law is overhauled, Obama should use his executive power to shield families facing deportation or separation because at least one parent is an illegal immigrant.
Members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus noted the absences. “I heard some people got called,” said Arizona Representative Raul Grijalva, former president of the caucus. “I didn’t.”
These lawmakers are requesting that the White House “to make some administrative remedies to lessen the pain,” Grijalva said. But the White House,“ see that as politically not healthy for them.”
The White House argues that it does not have the legal authority to exempt certain illegal immigrant categories from the law.
“With respect to the notion that I can just suspend deportations through executive order, that’s just not the case,” Obama explained on March 28 at a town hall sponsored by the Univision television network. “There are laws on the books that Congress has passed.”
Hispanic voters held a pivotal role in pushing Obama to win in 2008, giving him 67 percent of their support, according to the Pew Research Center.
Now in 2112, it will again be the Hispanic vote that will either “make it or break it” for Obama. Let’s see if Obama is up to the fight.