Washington, DC — Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid released the following statement today on Senator Frist’s threats to bring ill-considered immigration reform legislation to the Senate floor before the Judiciary Committee finishes work on its own bill. Immigration reform and border security are among the most important and most difficult issues facing America today, and neither will be solved by arbitrary political deadlines, partisan politics, or unworkable legislation. Democrats are working for comprehensive, smart solutions to immigration reform and will block any attempt to short-circuit the committee process for political gain.
Senator Reid’s statement follows below:
“Senator Frist should stop threatening the Judiciary Committee with an arbitrary deadline for finishing work on the immigration bill. The Committee has been working diligently and should be allowed to complete its markup when the Senate returns from the recess. On an issue as complex and significant as immigration, we need bipartisan solutions not partisan ultimatums.
“There are plenty of other matters for the full Senate to consider while the Committee continues its work on immigration. For example, we could return to the lobbying reform bill and finish that important bill before starting the immigration floor debate.
“In any event, the Majority Leader’s enforcement-only approach to immigration will not work. Clearly the federal government must work to shut down the flow of illegal immigration across our borders. But without comprehensive reforms to our immigration laws, the situation on the border will continue to be chaotic.
“Democrats support bipartisan, realistic, and workable immigration policies that will reunite families, provide for continued economic growth, protect the rights of American workers, and honor our values as a nation of immigrants.
“I will object to any attempt by the Republican leadership to short-circuit the committee process on the immigration bill.”