Boro reps want immigration vote

Lawmakers gather at Flushing Town Hall to push immigration reform. Photo courtesy Grace Meng
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Queens immigration advocates joined federal and state lawmakers in front of Flushing Town Hall last week to rally for comprehensive immigration reform.

“Comprehens­ive immigration reform is good for our economy and is the right thing to do to help those who play by the rules but risk being deported through no fault of their own,” U.S. Rep. Steve Israel (D-Melville) said. “The votes are there to pass the bill, but Speaker Boehner must allow us to vote on it.”

The U.S. Senate passed a bill last year that would provide undocumented immigrants with a path to citizenship, but House Speaker John Boehner (R-0hio) never brought the legislation to the floor for a vote.

Israel announced 170 House Democrats have signed a petition, demanding Boehner allow a vote.

“We cannot wait another day, another year to fix our broken immigration system. The time is now,” said SJ Jung, a Flushing business owner and president of the MinKwon Center for Community Action, who participated in a eight-day fast in Washington, D.C., last year to raise awareness of the issue.

State lawmakers joined Israel to voice their support of federal immigration reform and to renew their push to get the state Dream Act passed.

The state Dream Act was voted down in the state Senate last month.

“Immigrants are the very embodiment of the American Dream. They came to this country in search of better jobs, better schools and a better future,” state Sen. Toby Stavisky (D-Whitestone) said. “It is our responsibility as legislators to make sure that our laws give them a fair and equal chance to make that dream a reality.”

U.S. Rep. Grace Meng (D-Flushing) was scheduled to attend the press conference to voice her support, but could not because of a death in her family.

Reach reporter Alex Robinson by e-mail at or by phone at 718-260-4566.

Posted 12:00 am, April 8, 2014
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Reader feedback

gh from queens says:
If you broke a federal law, you should not be given anything but a one way trip back to your native country! How is this fair to people who are trying to do things the legal way? How is it fair that you get to cut the line in front of millions of people who have been trying to get visas to come into the USA for many years?
April 8, 2014, 9:13 am
not the same from Queens says:
Immigrants are those who came here legally. Some become citizens, some just want to earn money and go home. But either way, they are living within the law. Illegal "immigrants" are criminals who either snuck into the country, overstayed visas, claimed asylum which was not granted, etc. These are law breakers who steal services like school, drive down salaries for manual labor jobs, drive without licenses and in general do not care about this country. They are only here to take not to provide value. So when pols talk about immigrants, they need to let us know if they mean true immigrants or criminals. Not surprised that Jeb Bush came out and said that illegal immigration is not a felony, is a different kind of crime, etc. He wants Hispanic votes but he turns off both law abiding citizens and law abiding immigrants.
April 8, 2014, 10:36 am
Peter May from Whitestone says:
Where's Ron Kim with our express buses. He is full of crap when it comes to the needs of our express bus riders. When you demand that his staff does their job, then you get called out.
April 8, 2014, 7:11 pm
c from queens says:
Animals killing our country!!! so sad that our elected officials just stand by an help ,,, GO BACK TO YOUR OWN COUNTRY
April 9, 2014, 1:40 am
Citizen from Bayside says:
Most are here illegally and have no respect for the neighborhood they live in. What happened to the limit of persons that enter from each country? They send their children to school without the proper vaccines and get free lunch to boot!! Soon this will no longer be NY,it will be what handout can I get city!!!
April 9, 2014, 7:08 pm

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