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Obama and US immigration ReformJanuary 7, 2009 Subscribe in a reader
President-Elect Obama is under increasing pressure to reform US immigration. Latinos voted for Barack Obama in big numbers in the US. They are now expecting Obama to keep his promise on immigration reform.
"We voted in large numbers for Obama," said Juan Salgado, board president of the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights, a nonprofit based in Chicago; Obama was very much influenced by them when he was Senator. Mr Salgado went onto say "If we're sitting here two and a half years from now and absolutely nothing's been done, people are going to start asking questions."
Obama's father was an immigrant and he is the nephew of an illegal immigrant. He is only the fourth President to have a foreign parent according to Library of Congress historian Gerrard Gawalt.
Supporters of the estimated twelve million illegal immigrants in the US are looking for a path to legal residency. This could be difficult during a time when unemployment in the US is going up and the US and much of the World is experiencing an economic downturn. "We're going to be fighting like crazy to keep it off the floor" in Congress, said Roy Beck, president of Numbers USA.
It is expected that Obama will stop immigration raids in future. Further immigration reform for the benefit of the largely Hispanic illegal immigrant population could be more difficult. Obama will have the greatest influence in Congress during the start of his presidency; This may be the best time to push for immigration reform.
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