Horsford Signs Discharge Petition To Force Vote On Immigration Reform
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Representative Steven Horsford (NV-4) signed a discharge petition on the floor of the House to force a vote on H.R. 15, the bipartisan comprehensive immigration reform bill that would help secure the border, protect workers, unite families, provide an earned pathway to citizenship, and create jobs. Horsford is an original sponsor of H.R. 15.
In addition, Rep. Horsford spoke at a press conference on the steps of the Capitol with House Democrats to demand Speaker Boehner bring up H.R. 15 for a vote. He also urged his Republican colleagues to sign the discharge petition.
“There is only one person standing in the way of passing comprehensive immigration reform, and that’s Speaker John Boehner,” Horsford said. “We have the votes. The time for waiting is over. The time is now to let the people’s House vote.”
It has been almost nine months since the Senate passed its own comprehensive immigration reform legislation by an overwhelming bipartisan margin of 68-32.
Once the petition collects 218 signatures, H.R. 15 would come to the floor for a vote despite the Speaker’s resistance.
A report from the Congressional Budget Office released on Tuesday found that the House legislation, H.R. 15, would reduce the deficit by $900 billion over the next two decades – including $200 in the first decade alone.
House Democrats are also launching a new website feature – Dems.gov/TimeIsNow – where anyone can add their name to the list if they support the #DemandAVote Petition to force the House to finally take action to fix our broken immigration system.
Below is a transcript of Rep. Horsford’s remarks:
“Thank you, it’s good to be here today as we take the next step to reform our immigration system.
"Last week in Nevada I heard from Bryan Rivera, and I told him I would bring his story to Washington. Bryan’s mom, Thelma, came to the United States at age 25. She is undocumented. She's never been in trouble. But her life was difficult. Her husband abused her while she was pregnant with Bryan. Bryan told us: ‘My father has terrorized my mother’s life.’ Thankfully, Thelma left her husband and worked two jobs to support her son.
"But Bryan’s father recently re-entered his life, and turned his mother in to the authorities because she demanded he pay child support. He told Bryan, ‘Remember your mother’s an illegal immigrant and I can get rid of her.’ And that's just what he did, because our system is broken. Bryan’s mom was detained. Thelma, a victim of domestic violence, became the victim of a broken system. She was detained at the hands of her abuser. That is perverse. It is disgusting.
"It is why we need reform. Not only for DREAMers, but for their parents. So Speaker Boehner, we’ve asked for a vote on H.R. 15. We move forward with the discharge petition, because one person should not stand in the way of the will of the American people. We have the votes, we just need to vote. And today, we demand that vote. We hear from Republicans that they are the party of family values. Yet, they are complicit in separating mothers and fathers from their children.
"Last Tuesday we were able to reunite Bryan with his mom, thanks to help from Congressman Gutierrez and Hinojosa. But they are just one story. And the only way to help everyone is to pass immigration reform. There is no excuse. And now every House Republican has a choice. Either side with families and sign the discharge petition, or do nothing and be a co-conspirator in tearing families apart. These families need to be on a pathway to citizenship together, not at a fork in the road that separates them. The only way we can do this is by passing reform now.”