[RECORDING] Bipartisan Immigration Summit With Sens. Romney, Bennet, Sinema and Kelly, Along With Governors Ducey and Polis
Link to recording: https://bit.ly/3tAX13g
PHOENIX, ARIZONA — With Congress voting on immigration bills this week, the American Business Immigration Coalition — Intermountain Chapter, hosted an Intermountain immigration summit featuring business leaders, CEOs, university presidents and bipartisan elected officials, including Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT); Arizona Governor Doug Ducey (R-AZ); U.S. Senator Michael Bennet (D-CO), Colorado Gov. Jared Polis; U.S. Senator Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ); U.S. Senator Mark Kelly (D-AZ).
The Intermountain region of the United States — which includes Arizona, Utah, Nevada, and Colorado — is home to about 2.5 million immigrants who pay $18 billion in federal and state taxes each year. Together, their economic impact in the region is close to $80 billion per year. A path to legal status and citizenship for Dreamers, Agricultural workers and essential workers is supported by over 70% of American voters. Commonsense immigration solutions will help the Intermountain states rebuild and recover from the pandemic, while powering the region’s biggest industries including construction, agriculture, hospitality, and tourism.
For follow up interviews with business leaders or advocates, please contact email@example.com.
Bob Worsley, Former AZ State Senator and Skymall founder and Co-Chair of the American Business Immigration Coalition (ABIC):
“It’s time to start building a bipartisan, productive, and modern immigration system. There’s huge support by American voters for Dreamers, farmworkers, and essential workers. There’s a responsibility for elected officials to move forward. We are delighted that the House passed Dream and Ag workers bills yesterday with strong bipartisanship. We are here today, joined by bipartisan U.S. Senators and Governors, to discuss how to get this over the finish line in the Senate.”
Mike Kaplan, Aspen Snowmass CEO, said:
“Today, we are two employees away from having to shut a restaurant down during Spring Break. Next year, as business snaps back, how are we going to fill those jobs? Where are we going to get the staff we need to help us to function? I really don’t know. We are concerned about that and I think it is going to impact our business in a negative way and slow down our recovery. This issue needs to be addressed now.”
Chancellor Melody Rose of the Nevada System of Higher Education said: “Immigration reform is critical to our campuses to ensure a highly skilled workforce in Nevada and ameliorate long-standing income inequality throughout our state’s rural and urban areas. First- and second-generation students comprise 28% of Nevada’s higher education student body, a growing number that underscores the importance of immigration in the classroom and our workforce. As a nation, our collective fate is tied to the success of immigrants, and that is why the Nevada System of Higher Education stands firmly in support of commonsense immigration solutions.”
Derek Miller, Salt Lake Chamber of Commerce President and CEO, said:
“It is often said our country’s immigration system is broken. That is probably understating the problem. It is more than just broken, it is upside down and backwards. We don’t have secure borders and therefore can’t keep bad actors out. And we don’t have a functioning immigration system that will allow enough individuals in, who want to be in this country in order to contribute and benefit our economy and communities. These immigrants are part of the rich fabric of our multicultural society. As we come out of this pandemic where many in our community suffered, one of the mantras that we championed at the Salt Lake Chamber was that we must ‘lead together.’ I believe as we do that by developing inclusive and thoughtful policies called for in the Utah Compact we will then WIN TOGETHER!”
Wilford Anderson, Emeritus General Authority, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints:
“In my church, service around the world, I learned that people can do without a lot of things…but there is one thing they cannot live without hope. We must not deprive our people of hope.”
HIGHLIGHTS FROM SUMMIT (click on link for complete video):
U.S. Senator Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ): “We should find a bipartisan solution to permanently protect our Dreamers. Arizona Dreamers graduate from our schools, contribute to our economy and enlist in our military to serve our nation. These young people are contributing members of our communities and deserve a chance to be recognized as Americans.”
U.S. Senator Mark Kelly (D-AZ): “Addressing this challenge [immigration reform] will require comprehensive bipartisan solutions… this will mean families can stay together and continue to be part of our communities without fear of deportation.”
U.S. Senator Michael Bennet (D-CO): “Immigration reform should not be a partisan issue, our commitment to immigration is a commitment to staying competitive…There are half a million immigrants in Colorado, they are fundamental to our economy.”.
U.S. Senator Mitt Romney (R-UT): “America is a country of immigrants… our immigration system is in need of serious reform… We’ve got to provide DACA recipients a legal matter to remain in the country.”
Arizona Governor Doug Ducey: “Our country is a land of opportunity built by immigrants, and Arizona is a shining example of that. We need Washington DC to step up…and find policies that create opportunities for immigrants while keeping Arizonians safe”
Colorado Gov. Jared Polis: “Our immigration system needs reform, it’s broken…We in Colorado are strong because of its immigrant population. Sensible immigration reform is so important, fixing our broken system would help everyone.”
Event Co-sponsors: Aspen Snowmass, Arizona Chamber of Commerce, Greater Phoenix Leadership, The Presidents’ Alliance on Higher Education & Immigration, UnidosUS, Aliento, Jewish Community Relations Council, Valley Interfaith Project, Local First Arizona, Arizona Faith Network, Chicanos por la Causa, US Conference of Catholic Bishops.