The following was written by Amy B. Dean, a fellow at the Century Foundation and principal of ABD Ventures LLC,
an organizational development consulting firm that works to develop new
and innovative organizing strategies for social change organizations.
At this moment, various plans to reform America's broken immigration
system are working their way through Congressional debate. On Monday, a
bipartisan group of eight lawmakers unveiled a
plan that includes what they call a "tough but fair" path to
citizenship for undocumented immigrants. Last Friday, members of the
Congressional Hispanic Caucus met with President Obama to discuss the
issue, and this caucus' input will be influential in shaping any final legislation.
the current political climate, immigration reform is broadly popular,
with both parties eager to win over the Hispanic electorate in 2014 and
2016. But that doesn't mean that a bipartisan effort will pass a good
law -- especially if long-time opponents of immigration reform are only
cynically vying for votes. We have every reason to doubt the sincerity
of conservatives such as Senator Marco Rubio, who is leading the charge
from the Republican side of the aisle with an eye on his own bid for
For the Democrats, the challenge will be to avoid
simply jumping at the first deal offered by newly converted
conservatives. Instead, for the first time in decades, promoters of
reform have the opportunity to hold America to its promise of being a
land of liberty and justice for all.
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