28 Jun 2007 Black Activists Applaud Defeat of Amnesty Bill
Members of the Project 21 black leadership network applaud the defeat of legislation in the U.S. Senate earlier today that would have created a path to legalization for millions of foreigners residing illegally in the United States without solid guarantees regarding border security and the enforcement of current immigration law.
“The defeat of the Bush-Kennedy immigration bill shows the American people can still have their say in the legislative process if they are loud enough,” said Project 21 member Kevin Martin. “When it appeared that so many of our elected officials were going to turn their backs on the overwhelming desires of their constituents and vote for a bad bill, it was the unswerving determination of grassroots activists and the national forum of talk radio that made these lawmakers remember to dance with them what brung them.”
On June 28, a bipartisan group of senators voted against ending debate on immigration legislation endorsed by the Bush White House. This vote on cloture fell 14 votes short of the 60 needed to end debate. Observers say the defeat means that similar legislation will not receive further consideration until the next session begins in 2009. Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff has reportedly said he now plans to concentrate on the construction of a U.S.-Mexico border fence that was approved last year.
In discussing the failure of the bill, Senator Jim DeMint (R-SC), an opponent of the bill, told reporters: “I think the only victory here is for the American people and, symbolically, a government of the people and for the people. The people responded to this issue in a very emotional and… a very engaged way which changed the minds of many people here in the Senate.”
Project 21, a nonprofit and nonpartisan organization sponsored by the National Center for Public Policy Research, has been a leading voice of the African-American community since 1992. For more information, contact David Almasi at (202) 543-4110 x11 or [email protected], or visit Project 21’s website at http://www.project21.org/P21Index.html.