Congressman Ray LaHood (R-IL), who is the President-Elect’s pick for Secretary of Transportation, is the grandson of Lebanese immigrants and has been a co-sponsor of several immigration reform measures. Though he was set to retire after his seventh term representing Illinois’ 18th District, it’s clear that Ray LaHood’s firm history of bipartisanship will be an addition to the incoming administration.
According to a statement put out by the Arab American Institute yesterday:
With his knowledge of Congress and his fair-handed demeanor, LaHood has often chaired the House of Representatives on contentious issues. [...] Arab Americans are proud of Ray LaHood’s service to our country. He is a measured and thoughtful voice on the Hill, someone who has never been afraid to reach across the aisle to find common ground.
The Congressman co-sponsored recent legislation that would have enacted comprehensive immigration reform, and his pick is just another appointment that bodes well for getting a real reform passed in the new administration.
We also hope he becomes a model on immigration for the GOP, many of whose leaders are re-thinking the party’s hard-line immigration strategy in the wake of major losses this election.