DENVER (CBS4) – Colorado Sen. Michael Bennet played a key role in getting the immigration bill passed in the Senate this week. Now the legislation heads toward the Republican-led House where it faces much opposition.
Supporters rallied at the University Of Denver campus on Sunday calling on the House to follow the Senate’s lead. They say the bill impacts real lives.
“I’m originally from Mexico. My parents decided to move to Colorado when I was 2 years and a half,” demonstrator Alex Alvarado said.
Alvarado is a dreamer and considers himself an American.
“It’s been great. We’re so integrated with our community and it seems big politics is getting in the way right now,” he said.
Alvarado came out to celebrate the Senate stamping approval on the sweeping immigration bill. He and others flanked Bennet, who calls on the House to follow suit.
“It affects real Coloradans, their farms, businesses, high-tech companies; every corner of the state is affected by it — our broken immigration system,” Bennet said. “We now have a path to fixing that.”
The bill promises to give 11 million people who are living in the United States illegally a path to citizenship. It also adds about $46 billion for increased border security, but its future is shaky in a Republican-led House.
“We are a nation of immigrants and we are a nation of laws. I don’t think the Senate bill does enough to make sure we maintain and remain a nation of laws,” Republican Rep. Corey Gardner said.
“The compromise is going to have to come from getting a bill out of the House and going to the Senate to work out the differences,” said Rep. Bob Goodlatte, R-Virginia.
Regardless of the debate in Washington, Alvarado is set to go to college in the fall and will continue to fight for the life his parents gave him.
“The way we’re putting pressure on the House I definitely think it’s going to be positive,” Alvarado said. “It’s just got to be whatever it takes.”
House Republicans say they will consider each piece of the immigration bill separately, but they would like to create their own version focusing on border security.