Saturday, June 16, 2012

Miranda to Tobin: ‘We have become political ostriches … unwilling to address our immigration issues …’

STATE CAPITOL, PHOENIX – Today Rep. Catherine Miranda, D-Phoenix (District 16), sent the following letter to Speaker of the House Andy Tobin, R-Dewey (District 1), following his reaction to the immigration policy change that affects Dream Act students that President Barack Obama and Secretary of State Janet Napolitano recently announced.

Dear Speaker Tobin;

I cannot express enough my disappointment in your reaction to President Obama’s call for a more reasonable and logical approach to one aspect of a failed immigration policy. This failure is the result of a political football game that is primarily contingent upon who controls the presidency … Republican or Democrat. Congressional inaction coupled with political posturing has turned a blind eye to economic realities. These young men and women are the brightest hope for this country’s ability to compete in a global economy.

This year an honors Dream Act student graduated in bio-medical engineering with offers from companies in China. Does it make sense for this country to ignore this valuable resource yet search in foreign countries for 50 % of our engineers and doctors? It is ironic that China is the same country that owns 60% of our foreign debt of the past five years. Every day at the Legislature this year was a reminder that we have become political ostriches unable or unwilling to address our immigration issues in a responsible manner.

Mr. Speaker you and I have had many discussions on immigration and, while we may not always agree, I have found you to be a person with common sense. Your statements reflect the prevailing attitude in our Legislature of attrition through enforcement. In Arizona, for too long we have seen the moderate Republican bullied into submission by extremists. Your reference to rampant “drug and human” damages Arizona’s image because it offers an opinion that is not factually based. Your suggestion that President Obama is pandering to the Hispanic community is interesting because in Arizona we also have seen the majority in the Legislature pander to extreme views. Mr. Speaker perhaps a return to logical, common sense politics is possible after the November elections.

Governor Brewer's call to secure the border first is the comparable to old country western song that says "How high is the water papa? Five-foot-five and rising son." How much more can a country do to secure a border? President Obama acted in the best interest of the country. So long as we are stuck like a broken record, our country will continue to witness a human capital flight of historic proportions which will relegate us to a third world status.

State Representative
Catherine Miranda

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