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Durbin, Business Leaders Discuss Immigrant Legalization Through Reconciliation

SPRINGFIELD – U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, yesterday met virtually with Business Roundtable affiliates to discuss the urgent need to pass immigration reform through budget reconciliation, including measures to provide legal permanent residency to Dreamers, Temporary Protected Status (TPS) recipients, and essential workers. 

“We need to provide a path to legal status for Dreamers and others who are contributing to our economy every day,” said Durbin.  “Fixing our broken immigration system remains one of my top priorities in Congress.  This is a critical component of our economic recovery and rebuilding our communities, and it cannot wait any longer—which is why I believe we must include immigrant legalization in reconciliation legislation.”

Since Durbin first introduced the Dream Act in 2001, Republicans have obstructed bipartisan immigration reform time and time again, including filibustering the Dream Act at least five times.  They have instead advocated for partisan provisions such as cutting legal immigration and blocking all asylum seekers.  In contrast, the reforms Durbin is advocating for in the Senate—including legalization for Dreamers, TPS recipients, and essential workers—are estimated to add nearly $150 billion of spending power to our economy every year, boosting our nation’s GDP by $1.5 trillion over the next ten years. 

Durbin told the business leaders, “Thank you for caring enough to speak up on this topic.  I’m not going to quit on these young people, and I hope you won’t either.”

A photo of yesterday’s meeting is available here.