cannot agree on
. congress remains no closer to consensus here.
called on the house to act arguing that the nation's economy is at stake.
here in america we've always been a nation of immigrants. that's what's kept our
dynamic, our businesses on the cutting edge and our economy the strongest in the world. under the current system too many smart
immigrants are prevented from contributing to that success.
joining me is democratic congresswoman whip for the
and member of the
. good day to you.
good morning or good afternoon where you are.
good afternoon from me where i'm at now. you and other members of the
met with the president and vice president on wednesday to discuss this very issue of
. what did you hear new from him?
well, i think the important thing is not what was new but rather there's a new reenergized effort by the
and the president. it's a priority issue. it's a legacy issue and immoral not to act. we really need to get it done now. i think the president's statement this morning reflecting on what it means for the economy as what it means for these families. all those issues were discussed and again we were focusing on what we could do to get this bill passed.
do you think that
's activity and involvement helps the very debate around
i do. it's clear that we need to make sure that members in the house are working across the aisle. that we're doing everything we can to help the speaker find the path to get a comprehensive bill debated and passed. the president's role is to reassure the
about where we are that we've got to do something and this is time to act. i think his role in that regard is critical.
some republicans are saying that democrats in the house should become more comfortable with the idea of path to legalization as opposed to a path to citizenship. would you sign onto that?
no. this is a situation, every immigrant that's come to this country combs here with hope and determination and dreams of making a
and the motion to address our broken immigration system this we would have a two
is exactly the thing that we should not do. this is about building the
, building family strength, bringing innovation.
what's the compromise?
this is the time to make it right.
what would you say to compromises and if it's not going to be path to legalization as been pushed by some on the right?
if you look at the
and what the gang of seven has been working on, a come comprehensive approach that deals with immigration not just at the border with mexico but everybody that comes into the
that's dealing with
. we've done everything to make this a bill that addresses every single issue on the table and the notion one really important facet should get left off, which is a pathway to citizenship doesn't make any sense. you haven't fixed the broken system. you've just addressed individual issues.
what about piecemeal as the speaker has discussed?
if there's a piecemeal and the first thing we discuss is a pathway to citizenship, that would send a message that both parties are willing to take a bill at the time and do what's best on all of the pieces.
he's saying he wants
i'm sure that's what the negotiation and strategy is from the
. i think that house democrats, including myself, have to make every effort to get to those republicans who understand you need a path way to citizenship. we had
talking to house republicans last wednesday reiterating we ought to be compassionate about come prehencivecomprehensive reform and this is the time to act.
you voted against it and you said you were appalled by that bill. if it does go into law here, what would be the impact in your opinion?
i think it's a disaster. this is the first time in history we've tried to separate out the food nutrition program out of the rest of the policies that support farmers and ranchers in this country. the aspect in order to deal with the issues drought and investment and disadvantaged farmers and making sure we're protecting farmers who are growing our food for this country and other nations, the notion we would do that without addressing starving children and families is outrageous. never before has this occurred. we've always made sure that poverty programs, bipartisan, were left out of deficit reductions and any other strategies to deal with the current spending issues in congress. i think it's a bad policy statement. we're not going to take care of our
social safety net
. 500 groups, at least, all supporting ranchers and formers said exactly that same thing. these are people who buy the food that ranchers and formers are bringing to america's tables.
thank you so much. i appreciate your time. you have a good one.