Bennet Encourages House to Support Discharge Petition to Advance Immigration Bill

Asks for Up or Down Vote on Bipartisan Immigration Bill Supported Broadly by Coloradans

Colorado U.S. Senator Michael Bennet is supporting efforts in the House of Representatives to bring the bipartisan immigration bill to a vote.

Yesterday, members of the House introduced a discharge petition to hold an up or down vote on the bipartisan Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act that would fix our broken immigration system. Bennet helped write and pass the bill in the Senate last year.

“The House should use this path to pass a bill to fix our broken immigration system if it can’t find another way,” Bennet said. “All we’re asking for is an up or down vote on a bipartisan bill.”

“While the House is dragging its feet, our borders remain less secure, our visa system keeps us less competitive, our economy suffers, and millions of families remain in the shadows. Farmers, high-tech businesses, and the tourism industry are left without the workers they need, students educated here are denied a chance to contribute to our economy, and kids who grew up here live in fear of watching their parents get deported. It’s no wonder that people in Colorado are frustrated that Washington isn’t working.”

The discharge petition requires 218 signatures from both Democrats and Republicans in the House of Representatives to force a vote on the bill.

Bennet is a member of the bipartisan “Group of 8” that introduced the Border Security, Economic Opportunity and Immigration Modernization Act of 2013 last April following several months of discussions and negotiations with a diverse group of stakeholders. The bill secures our borders, includes a path to citizenship for millions of undocumented immigrants, makes reforms to an outdated visa system to ensure businesses have access to the workers they need, and includes important worker protections. The Senate passed the bill last June.

Bennet’s work on the bill was informed by a statewide conversation on immigration he led that produced a set of principles called the Colorado Compact. Hundreds of statewide leaders spanning the political, business, law enforcement, agricultural, civic, and religious spectrums signed the Compact.