Congress is still in session. Despite outward appearances, it is not shut down or turned off and its members are still capable of reasoned discourse and cooperative efforts for the good of the nation, at least we think so. Or, we hope so. Perhaps immigration reform is not dead.
It should not be. It should be alive and moving. Marches and rallies in some 150 cities Saturday provide testament to the need and desire. Polls make clear the public’s support. Budget squabbles and government shutdowns do not make real issues go away. Immigration reform is no less urgent because the House cannot pass a continuing resolution or Republicans cannot stomach Obamacare. There are still 11 million immigrants living in legal limbo. Their children still await the chance to further their education and gain legal residency in the country where they grew up. There are still crops to harvest. There are businesses in need of highly skilled employees. There are still universities graduating some of the best-educated people on earth, only to see them barred from work in the country where they gained their skills. There is still a minimum 10-year wait, and that is a long shot, simply to obtain an immigrant’s visa to legally perform menial labor in the United States.