Bishop Jeff Lee of Chicago is among a group of religious leaders who have called on Rep. John Boehner, Speaker of the U. S. House of Representatives to stop “backpedalling” and bring a comprehensive immigration reform bill to a vote. In a statement published in the Chicago Sun Times, the group wrote, in part:
The journey of immigration reform legislation in Congress — like the journey of many of the prophets and leaders in the Abrahamic faiths, and like the journey of the tens of millions of immigrants who have flocked to this land over the centuries — will undoubtedly face challenges and uncertainty. We will not only pray but will work together with our elected officials to turn the temporary roadblock erected by Speaker Boehner’s comments on Thursday into a minor speed bump on our nation’s path to immigration reform.
We encourage Speaker Boehner and the rest of the GOP leadership to continue with their previous push to pass immigration reform. We encourage Illinois Republican Congressmen Davis, Hultgren, Kinzinger, Roskam, Schock and Shimkus to publicly support their party’s Standards for Immigration Reform and call for a debate and vote on reform. We encourage our Democratic Representatives to work constructively with their Republican counterparts to advance this issue in a bipartisan manner. And we encourage religious leaders and people of faith to pray and advocate that our elected representatives will do what is best not for an individual political party, but for our country and all of the people that call it home.
To our elected officials: You have the support of our faith communities and the majority of American voters to pass immigration reform. We are praying that you do not waste it.
Why has immigration reform been so difficult to achieve?