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Immigration Reform: Should America Open a Pathway?

As President Barack Obama kicks off his second term in office, the often prickly issue of immigration reform has come to the forefront. We’d like to get your thoughts on America’s immigration policy and the need for reform, Tampa Bay!

After tackling health care in his first term, it looks like President Barack Obama has set his sights on waging another big battle in his second term in office – immigration reform.

The president is expected to discuss his plans for reform on Tuesday during a trip to Nevada, but a bi-partisan group of Senators intends to beat him to the punch.  The group of eight Senators includes Florida’s own Republican Marco Rubio, according to the Huffington Post.

Their plan, which will be more fully announced today, Jan. 28, calls for a multifaceted approach to reform with such prongs as:

  • Border security
  • Workplace enforcement
  • A pathway to citizenship

The Senate group, however, wants to make sure the first two points are adequately addressed by the country before the pathway opens.

"Once the enforcement measures have been completed, individuals with probationary legal status will be required to go to the back of the line of prospective immigrants, pass an additional background check, pay taxes, learn English and civics, demonstrate a history of work in the United States, and current employment, among other requirements, in order to earn the opportunity to apply for lawful permanent residency,” their draft agreement reads. “Those individuals who successfully complete these requirements can eventually earn a green card."

Americans seem to be warming to the idea of creating a pathway for undocumented immigrants to become citizens. According to the Huffington Post, a recent poll conducted by Public Opinion Strategies showed that 77 percent of voters now favor an immigration package that includes a path to citizenship.

Here’s what we want your thoughts on Tampa Bay: Do you think it’s time for immigration reform? Do you support opening a pathway to citizenship for America’s estimated 11 million illegal immigrants? How would you like to see the issue handled? Share your thoughts in the comments section.

Michael February 07, 2013 at 09:03 PM
Seal the border. End of the line. No anchors.
Michael February 07, 2013 at 09:19 PM
mm, read some of your rants a few weeks back. You're still the same Mor on.
Michael D. February 07, 2013 at 09:36 PM
Are you also willing to push the companies that are bringing in these workers because it lowers cost of labor. In America there is no God-given rights, only government given rights.
Adam Wilkes February 07, 2013 at 09:43 PM
How about sealing a border just around your house? That would be a lot cheaper and the rest of us can just carry on! I say open the border!
Torrey Craig February 11, 2013 at 05:30 PM
Your forefathers may have been one of the 12 million people processed through the first federal immigrant inspection station - aka Ellis Island in New York harbor. This was point that many immigrants from where processed and admitted into the United States. A register was kept of the individual who where processed, those who lacked the necessary papers where marked as WOP. WithOut Papers. The policy of our government at that time mostly barred people from Asian countries. We did not have strict quotas until 1921. If the objective is to control illegal immigrants, then remove the reason that individual comes to our country illegally.

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