Bernie Sanders

Sanders Campaign Press Release - Sanders Discusses Immigration Reform in Chicago

December 23, 2015

CHICAGO – U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders discussed immigration reform, jobs, education and health care during a meeting Monday in the city's Little Village neighborhood.

Bernie Sanders and Chuy Garcia

Cook County Commissioner Jesus "Chuy" Garcia introduced Sanders in an appearance at Pollo Feliz, a restaurant in the predominantly Mexican-American neighborhood.

"He is not your ordinary politician," Garcia said of Sanders. "He's here today because Bernie Sanders is someone who believes health care, housing and child care are basic human rights for everyone in America. He understands the plight of ordinary working people across this land."

In his remarks, Sanders talked about his support for immigration reform and the need to provide a path toward citizenship for 11 million undocumented people living in the United States.

"You're looking at the son of an immigrant," Sanders said. "My father came to this country at the age of 17 with no money and he could speak no English," he added.

The U.S. Senate two years ago passed immigration reform legislation with Sanders support but the House refused to take it up. As president, Sanders said he would work with lawmakers on Capitol Hill but added, "If Congress does not act, we will use the executive authority of the president to stop the dividing up of families."

In November, Sanders introduced his bold "Families First" immigration plan. Through legislation and executive action, Sanders would implement an immigration policy that provides a pathway to citizenship and is grounded in civil, humane and economic rights.

Sanders also alluded to remarks by Donald Trump. "In this country, people can disagree but what we will not accept in 2015 is appeals to racism. We will not accept candidates like Donald Trump referring to the Mexican people as criminals and rapists. We're going to shut that door on racism. We are not going to let Trump or anyone else open that door."

Bernie Sanders, Sanders Campaign Press Release - Sanders Discusses Immigration Reform in Chicago Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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