The Illinois congressman who’s pushing for administrative relief for illegal immigrants is examining the election results. U.S. Rep. Luis V. Gutierrez (D-Chicago) says it was a mistake by the president not to act in September, as he had promised. “If this November is any indication about what happens when you try to toy with your principles and your belief – what did you get? Nothing! You lost the Senate and you angered and you disillusioned a community that has always been so loyal to you as a party,” he said at a news conference Wednesday at the offices of the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights.
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The executive orders that Gutierrez would like to see would allow illegal immigrants here 10 years or more to be given work visas if they pass a background check and have paid their taxes. He wants such a provision to apply to all, not just those who have children or spouses who are U.S. citizens. Other provisions:
Illegal immigrants who marry a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident are entitled to a visa, but they must leave the United States and not return for 10 years. Gutierrez wants to waive the 10-year wait.
Gutierrez wants visas available to the spouses of those who get work visas. He says in the technology industries, spouses and children can’t work, so they often do nothing but stay home all day.
Gutierrez is pressing the president to act soon and to go big; he says if he offers relief to 7 million people, the criticism from opponents will be no greater than if it was 1 million.