At a round table today in Nevada, Hillary Clinton made the strongest commitment yet to immigration and immigration reform, putting the smackdown on Republicans' lame efforts to pretend they're willing to bend even a little bit on immigration.
In perhaps the strongest remarks on immigration of her entire career, Hillary Clinton vowed Tuesday evening to “do everything I possibly can” to help immigrants – including going beyond President Obama’s executive actions to extend deportation relief to undocumented immigrants.
“We can’t wait any longer for a path to full equal citizenship,” Clinton declared during a roundtable meeting with young, undocumented immigrants at a high school here.
Clinton distinguished herself from Republicans on the issue and made a personal appeal for reform. “This is where I differ from everybody on the Republican side,” she said. “Make no mistake. Today, not a single Republican candidate – announced or potential — is clearly and consistently supporting a path to citizenship. Not one.”
Republicans who do support comprehensive reform typically favor a pathway to legal status, but Clinton said anything short of full citizenship is “code for second-class status.”
The Democratic presidential candidate hit almost every issue on the immigration reform activist’s wish-list. She called for more humane detention practices, making it easier for families to plead their case for leniency, and took on the private prison industry. And crucially, she said she supported President Obama’s actions to shield millions of immigrants from deportation – and promised to go do even more. “If Congress continues to refuse to act, as president, I would do everything possible under the law to go even further,” she said.
This comes as the Koch Kollective ramps up their efforts to woo Latino voters via their "Libre Initiative," and Republican candidates give a limp handshake to "legal status," whatever that means. We all know the only legal status they'll confer on immigrants is "deportee."
It's a game-changer in the general election landscape, which is clearly where Hillary is aiming right now.