CWS Statement on Discharge Petition

March 26, 2014

Church World Service applauds Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi for filing a discharge petition to bring immigration reform to the floor of the House for a vote. This move signals a strong commitment to reform and a refusal to allow our legislative process be held hostage by a minority of representatives who are disregarding public demand for action on just and meaningful immigration reform.

“The petty and partisan politics of delay in the House of Representatives stand in stark contrast to bipartisan leadership and cooperation in the Senate, which last year passed S. 744, an immigration reform bill that included a path to citizenship for our undocumented community members,” said the Rev. John L. McCullough, CWS President and CEO. “With enough signatures, this “Give us a Vote” discharge petition would bring H.R. 15, the House counterpart of the bipartisan Senate bill, to a vote on the floor of the House.”

Support of the discharge petition will be another sign of the continual push to see the House take up an immigration reform bill this year. We remain hopeful that this discharge petition can reenergize and refocus the House on immigration reform, reigniting the potential that we celebrated with the release of the Republican Standards on Immigration Reform in January.

“Any immigration bill in the House must prioritize family unity and allow undocumented individuals to apply for a greencard and have meaningful opportunities to apply for U.S. citizenship,” said the Rev. McCullough. “Immigration reform that fails to fix the current unworkable system, or that bars individuals from seeking citizenship would be morally unacceptable, contrary to American values, and inconsistent with our imperative to welcome the sojourner. Similarly, immigration reform that focuses only on enforcement and on limitations to the Administration’s prosecutorial discretion will not fix our broken immigration system.”

CWS urges all members of the House of Representatives to respond to the will of the American people and the moral obligation to protect family unity, which we know to be the fabric of strong communities, by bringing immigration reform to a vote.