Center for American Progress Action

RELEASE: Majority Leader Sets Senate Stage: ‘S.1’ Immigration Reform Receives Top Spot in Legislative Priorities
Press Release

RELEASE: Majority Leader Sets Senate Stage: ‘S.1’ Immigration Reform Receives Top Spot in Legislative Priorities

At the start of each new congressional session, the majority leader signals the Senate’s priorities by assigning important legislative issues a bill number—the lower the number, the greater the priority. Angela Maria Kelley, Vice President for Immigration Policy and Advocacy at the Center for American Progress Action Fund, released the following statement on the significance of the immigration reform bill being designated “S. 1”:

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) spoke volumes about the Senate’s upcoming session by introducing S. 1 yesterday—“A bill to reform America’s broken immigration system.” In Washington subtle actions such as this can signal significant events on the horizon. Yesterday’s action by the majority leader confirms that passing common-sense immigration reform is hardly a flight of fancy; rather, it is a serious debate in the making, one where the fate of our nation’s 11 million undocumented immigrants will take center stage.

The introduction of S. 1 is in step with the opinion of the American public. Recent bipartisan polling by Public Opinion Strategies and Hart Research Associates finds that 77 percent of Americans are in favor of a balanced immigration reform plan that includes a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants, enhanced border security, and accountability for employers who hire unauthorized workers. Numerousotherpolls have confirmed the public’s support for a common-sense immigration reform plan. In Congress, a bipartisan consensus on immigration reform has emerged, with Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-VT) putting immigration at the top of his legislative agenda and Republicans such as Florida Sen. Marco Rubio coming out strongly in favor of fixing our nation’s broken immigration system.

It’s fitting that Majority Leader Reid introduced this bill on the heels of the president’s Inaugural Address, in which the president told the nation, “Our journey is not complete until we find a better way to welcome the striving, hopeful immigrants who still see America as a land of opportunity.” Yesterday Majority Leader Reid took us one step closer to completing that journey.

To speak with Angela Maria Kelley, please contact Crystal Patterson at 202.478.6350 or [email protected].