This quote from Loretta Sanchez in response to the speech that President Obama delivered today on the need for immigration reform pretty much says it all. The quote was given in the context of President Obama’s pledge to work with faith based groups on the immigration issue via the Orange County Register:
Sanchez, D-Santa Ana, said Obama’s promise to work with faith-based groups will be important to educate the public.
“That is where he really can make this an important, grass-roots base issue in many members’ districts. Maybe not this year, next year or the following year. But he’s working on it and that’s a positive thing.”
I have been rather leery of any talk about immigration reform in the context of a time line because midterm elections are approaching, but Sanchez came right out and said “maybe not this year, next year or the following year.”
She also talked about the need to educate people about immigration, which is something that our policymakers should be doing, along with their allies. However, I don’t see Congresswoman Sanchez picking up the immigration torch and running with it. It was Congressman Luis Gutierrez who spearheaded the Familia Unidas tour visiting US cities around the country talking about the need for comprehensive immigration reform. And of course, as Gustavo Arellano has diligently reminded us, it wasn’t until a few weeks ago that Congresswoman Sanchez finally decided to become a co-sponsor of the DREAM Act.
I think that Congresswoman Sanchez’s comment is fair, but I also sense that she isn’t fighting hard for and/or effectively making the case for comprehensive immigration reform very clearly. Could it be that Congresswoman Sanchez is firmly in the “enforcement camp”? I quickly scanned her top contributors for this election cycle, and Cogent Systems is ranked second in contributions for Loretta Sanchez. Cogent makes identification solutions, including the kind with finger prints. Hello biometric ID card! For those of you who don’t know about the biometric ID card proposals, just have a gander here. The ACLU, along with other privacy rights organizations, opposes such an ID card, and I could easily see a database of biometric information being abused.