During a speech at Georgetown University Law Center yesterday, Senate Judiciary Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-VT) announced plans to make immigration reform a top priority for his Committee in 2013. As the starting gate for consideration of immigration reform in Congress, Leahy’s Judiciary Committee will play a crucial role in passing immigration legislation that includes a roadmap to citizenship for 11 million aspiring Americans. Said Leahy:
I expect that the Judiciary Committee will devote most of our time this Spring working to pass comprehensive immigration reform. Few topics are more fundamental to who and what we are as a nation than immigration… From the young students brought to this country by their parents seeking a better life for them, to the hardworking men and women who play vital roles supporting our farmers, innovating for our technology companies, or creating businesses of their own, our nation relies on immigrants. We must find a way through the partisan gridlock to enact meaningful change, which should include a path for citizenship.
According to Frank Sharry, Executive Director of America’s Voice Education Fund:
Senator Leahy’s leadership and his plan to move legislation thoughtfully and quickly bode well for the prospects of immigration reform in Congress this year. The fact that Senator Leahy had a chance to leave the Judiciary committee to head the Appropriations committee, but instead decided to stay in his current chairmanship, is a clear indication of Chairman Leahy’s commitment to getting this done. It’s game on for immigration reform this Congress.