LULAC Supports a Comprehensive Bipartisan Agreement
Nation’s Largest & Oldest Civil Rights Organization Favors Linking Border Security to Other Major Immigration Issues Facing Latinos
Washington, DC - The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) says Tuesday’s verbal confrontation in the Oval Office between President Trump and Congressional Democratic leaders, while playing to a live national audience, did little to resolve one of the most divisive challenges on the minds of Americans.
“To keep repeating gimme my border wall or I’m shutting down the government is foolish and counterproductive,” says Domingo Garcia, National President. “The fact is that this is a much more complex and multifaceted issue and requires that President Trump be willing to read the expert briefings and listen to input from his own staff members who say a concrete barrier on our southern border is not a cure-all to what we’re facing,” he added.
President Trump told Democratic Senator Chuck Schumer and House Minority Leader, Nancy Pelosi in front of a crowd of news reporters in the Oval Office, “...tremendous amounts of (border) wall have already been built...and one way or another, the wall will be built.” Following Senator Schumer’s reminder that Democrats support border security within a larger immigration reform package that would be part of a budget continuing resolution to keep the government open, the President replied, “If we’re not going to have border security, we’re not going to keep it open.” Later in the meeting, the President stated, “You can’t have border security without the wall” and added, “If we can’t have border security, we’ll shut down the government.”
Garcia says LULAC favors a virtual wall that includes the latest surveillance and interdiction adaptive technologies which experts say are more efficient and effective. “Border Patrol agents need both the most advanced stealth and overt systems, the tools to be able to counter ever-changing methods smugglers are using. Also, the fact is that most illegal drugs come through legal checkpoints and a wall doesn’t address that.”
In addition, Garcia says that a comprehensive solution must include protection guarantees for non-criminal recipients of two programs: Deferred Action Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA). “DACA and DAPA recipients who have been contributing law-abiding individuals in the United States, going to school or working and paying their taxes deserve a chance to remain and be a afforded a path to become U.S. Citizens if they choose,” says Garcia.
He says that the third deal point is a foreign aid investment package modeled after the Marshall Plan at the end of the WWII. “If the U.S. truly wishes to reduce the flow of undocumented refugees, we must be willing to help stabilize democratic governments in their home countries and assist them in building their own economies to create jobs and opportunities where they live. This will stem violence and keep these populations there rather than risking the dangerous trek north. We urge both the Republican Administration and Congressional Democrats to work together to make this happen,” concluded Garcia.
The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) is the nation’s largest and oldest civil rights volunteer-based organization that empowers Hispanic Americans and builds strong Latino communities. Headquartered in Washington, DC, with 1,000 councils around the United States and Puerto Rico, LULAC’s programs, services and advocacy address the most important issues for Latinos, meeting critical needs of today and the future. For more information, visit www.LULAC.org