Obama: US Always Has Been a Nation of Immigrants

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obalCelebrating the ethnic diversity of America, President Barack Obama said more than two dozen foreign-born service members who became U.S. citizens at a White House ceremony on the Fourth of July are vivid reminders that the country is, and always has been, a nation of immigrants.

He said the vast range of backgrounds and experiences that made America a melting pot for more than 200 years also makes it stronger, but that the immigration system has to be retooled for the U.S. to keep its place as the greatest nation on earth.

“If we want to keep attracting the best and the brightest from beyond our shores, we’re going to have to fix our immigration system, which is broken,” Obama said after 25 service members from 15 countries collectively raised their right hands and pledged allegiance to the United States. “Pass common-sense immigration reform. We shouldn’t be making it harder for the best and the brightest to come here, create jobs here, grow our economy here. We should make it easier.”

The hot-button issue of immigration is earning renewed attention after the influx to the U.S. of tens of thousands of unaccompanied children from Central America. Under U.S. law, they must be sent back across the border with Mexico to their home countries, which has upset immigration advocates who already take issue with Obama’s strict enforcement of deportation policy. They want Obama to allow the children to stay; he says he must follow the law.

At the same time, Obama blames House Republicans for delaying action on immigration legislation. A comprehensive measure the Senate passed last summer has been blocked by House leaders who also have done little to advance their own immigration proposals.

Obama announced earlier this week that, as a result of inaction on Capitol Hill, he will pursue non-legislative ways that he can adjust U.S. immigration policy without waiting for Congress to send him a bill.

“I’m going to keep doing everything I can to make our immigration system smarter and more efficient,” Obama said.

(AP)




6 COMMENTS

  1. “Best and brightest”…don’t need just these but do need people that have jobs or relatives that will support them until they establish themselves.We have enough on the welfare rolls already.The rest and any with any type of criminal activity should be thrown out and prevented from entering irregardless of family connections, we have enough crime already. We cannot force on the American public the welfare of all the world’s unfortunate citizens.
    When POTUS talks about the history he should put it in perspective, people were welcomed in the US as immigrants but they were expected to have a job or an organization/family to support them until they found suitable housing and employment. All those who favor vast immigration should be willing to take on the responsibility privately of supporting these unfortunate potential immigrants and not expect the general US citizens to sacrifice their welfare for others. Immigration reform must first start with fixing the unrestricted flow and then providing a legal framework for accepting law-abiding, productive citizens from all countries, in reasonable numbers, and not the other way around. Most Americans support that and POTUS is being mendacious to infer otherwise. Blaming your rivals and alternate ideas is no way to show leadership, which is the primary responsibility for a president.

  2. Samuel Huntington exposed this fallacy years ago (and was spit out from “The establishment” for it). America is an EMIGRANT founded country. The immigration is a late 19th century innovation, albeit continuing until the 80’s when the whole dynamic changed. Read WHO ARE WE. trust me.