Pennsylvania Immigration and Citizenship Coalition

Pennsylvania Immigration & Citizenship Coalition Joins National Partners in Call for Swift Action on Immigration Reform

Nov 13 2012    Press Center

The election results have demonstrated the growing influence of Latino, Asian and immigrant voters across the United States and pushed immigration reform to the top of the national political agenda.  PICC joins its national partners in the Fair Immigration Reform Movement to call on President Obama and Congress to take swift action on comprehensive and humane reform of our immigration system.

Latino and Asian voters made up a larger share of the electorate than ever before, with Latinos constituting 10% and Asians 3% of the electorate. In the run-up to the election, immigrant groups across the country registered hundreds of thousands of voters and mounted extensive Get-Out-The-Vote campaigns. In Pennsylvania, PICC and local partners Boat People SOS, the Cambodian Association of Greater Philadelphia and the Arab American Community Development Corporation registered 5,500 immigrant voters and reached out to more than 12,000 immigrant voters through phone calls, mailings and door knocks.

Nationally, 71% of the Latino vote and 73% of the Asian vote went to President Obama. In Pennsylvania, support for President Obama among Latino voters was 80% – among the highest in the nation. The Latino and immigrant vote proved crucial to the election outcome in several swing states including Colorado, Nevada and Florida. Immigration continues to be a high priority issue for Latino and other immigrant voters. According to the Impre-Media Latino decisions poll, 35% of Latino voters identified immigration as the most important issue facing the Latino community, second only to the Economy and Jobs.

A national exit poll conducted by Edison Research showed overwhelming support among the general population for providing undocumented immigrants with a pathway to citizenship: 65% of all voters supported establishing a pathway to citizenship while only 28% favored mass deportation of undocumented migrants. Among Republican voters, a majority (51%) supported a pathway to citizenship for the undocumented.

The election results demonstrate the importance of immigrant voters to both parties and the broad support in the electorate for immigration reform. PICC is encouraged by statements from House Speaker John Boehner and Senate leaders that Congress is working towards an agreement on comprehensive immigration reform. PICC will continue to press elected officials to reform our immigration system to establish policies that keep families together, protect workers’ rights and provide opportunities for immigrants to fully integrate into society. We will also continue to promote public understanding of immigrants’ contributions to Pennsylvania and to combat anti-immigrant policies that detract from Pennsylvania’s economic prosperity and social well-being.