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Obama announces action on sweeping U.S. immigration reform

Friday, November 21, 2014 - 01:57

President Barack Obama announces the executive action he plans to take to overhaul the United States' immigration system. Nathan Frandino reports.

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After years of growing discontent among Latino supporters and other immigrant rights groups, President Barack Obama is imposing the most sweeping immigration reform in a generation. (SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA SAYING: "Today, our immigration system is broken, and everybody knows it." Through executive actions, Obama announced a three-part plan for reform. First he's sending additional resources to law enforcement personnel at the border to stem the flow of illegal crossings. Second he's making it easier and faster for high-skilled immigrants, graduates and entreprenuers to stay. Lastly the plan is taking steps to deal responsibly with the 4.7 million undocumented immigrants in the country. He said a major part of the deal is getting people to play by the rules. (SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA SAYING: "If you've been in America for more than five years; if you have children who are American citizens or legal residents; if you register, pass a criminal background check, and you're willing to pay your fair share of taxes - you'll be able to apply to stay in this country temporarily, without fear of deportation. You can come out of the shadows and get right with the law." His actions have set up a clash with Republicans, who control both the House and the Senate. Drawing a line of defense against expected challenges, Obama argued that past presidents - both Republican and Democratic -- had taken similiar steps. Then he issued a challenge of his own. (SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA SAYING: "And to those Members of Congress who question my authority to make our immigration system work better, or question the wisdom of me acting where Congress has failed, I have one answer: Pass a bill." Administrations officials described the actions as the biggest shift in immigration policy since 1986.

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Obama announces action on sweeping U.S. immigration reform

Friday, November 21, 2014 - 01:57