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As the son of immigrants, immigration reform is an issue close to my heart. Immigration is a complex problem and it is time for a comprehensive approach to reform. Our current immigration system is broken, and it must be fixed. For too long, extremes on either side of the aisle have discouraged real and meaningful discussion regarding immigration. I believe it is time to act on this pressing issue. It is the responsibility of those in Congress to implement fair and balanced legal immigration policies while still respecting the rule of law. 

I am encouraged by recent actions of Members from both parties who have come together to provide common sense solutions to the problems with our immigration system. I am willing to consider any proposal that includes realistic requirements that are achievable in the foreseeable future. 

I believe in a reasonable and responsible path to citizenship for those individuals who are contributing to our society. However, my first priority is ensuring a path to earned legal status for those who are already here. It is important to create a fair process to give immigrants the opportunity to obtain earned legal status. This will allow millions of immigrants to come out of the shadows, get involved in their children’s education, find employment, and raise their families. 

We should recognize the importance of family in American society and acknowledge the danger of removing the main breadwinner in a household simply because of their legal status. Rather than targeting workplaces and separating families, we should equip law enforcement with the tools to find and remove the undocumented immigrants who have committed serious crimes.

Another important aspect of immigration is developing a proposal which includes useful reform for the agriculture industry and farm workers alike. As you know, many industries in the Central Valley rely heavily on immigrant labor. Developing a guest worker program that will enable access to a reliable workforce is crucial to the stability of our local agricultural economy. 

Reforming our nation’s immigration system is a massive undertaking, one that should be examined carefully on every level. Comprehensive immigration reform will remain my top priority until a solution is reached.

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