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LULAC Reflects On President Obama’s 2012 State of the Union Address

In President Obama’s third State of the Union address, the President outlined specific policy priorities for his Administration in order to make “an economy that’s built to last.”

—In last night’s State of the Union Address, President Obama directly addressed the nation and put forth his plan for bolstering the middle class by reforming the tax code for the most affluent Americans; increasing educational opportunities; and maximizing the economic contributions with comprehensive immigration reform for millions of undocumented immigrants.

“We are pleased to hear that President Obama will lead the endeavor to keep jobs in the U.S., increase educational opportunities for people who are out of work and make comprehensive immigration reform a priority in this coming year,” said LULAC National President Margaret Moran. “Completely overhauling the existing immigration laws is imperative to the health of the nation, and will improve the very themes that the president addressed—jobs, education, and economic growth.” 

LULAC was pleased to hear President Obama urging Congress to work with him to improve the economy:  In a request to Congress, President Obama called for a bill that would build upon the momentum created by the 3 million new jobs; by encouraging U.S. manufacturing. He called for Congress to work together and pass legislation that will extend tax breaks to businesses that are currently creating U.S. jobs and remove tax incentives to industries that send jobs overseas. Emphasizing that we must all do our fair share to ensure the success of our economy, President Obama also called upon affluent Americans to pay their fair share.

LULAC supports the President’s initiative to streamline training programs for the unemployed: Calling higher education the only true economic and social equalizer, President Obama called for community colleges to work with industries to offer worker training programs in order to advance a person’s higher education and provide the skillsets that industries need.

LULAC hailed President Obama’s call for comprehensive immigration reform: President Obama enumerated the reasons why comprehensive immigration reform would create employment opportunities. The DREAM Act would allow students, who have met the requirements, an opportunity to attend a college or university, which would give the country a more learned and highly-skilled workforce.  Currently, only California benefits from a highly-educated workforce because of the ratification of the DREAM Act, which allows academic achievers to attend colleges and universities regardless of their legal status. 

According to both the Immigration Policy Center and the Center for American Progress, should the United States adopt a comprehensive measure to put unauthorized immigrants on a path toward naturalization, the first three years would be marked by higher personal income which would stimulate increased consumer spending, enough to create 750,000-900,000 jobs in the United States, as well as increased tax revenues of at least $4.5 billion.

“These facts undeniably establish that all Americans would benefit from comprehensive immigration reform, and we applaud President Obama for making this a priority and calling for Congress to act,” said Brent Wilkes, LULAC National executive director. 

The League of United Latin American Citizens, the largest and oldest Hispanic membership organization in the country, advances the economic condition, educational attainment, political influence, housing, health and civil rights of Hispanic Americans through community-based programs operating through 880 LULAC councils nationwide.