the WHITE HOUSEPresident Barack Obama

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The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release

Readout of the President's Meeting with Senator Robert Menendez and Representatives Nydia Velazquez and Luis Gutierrez

Today, President Obama met in the Oval Office with U.S. Senator Robert Menendez and U.S. Representatives Nydia Velazquez and Luis Gutierrez.  The President reiterated his commitment to working in a bipartisan manner to pass comprehensive immigration reform.  This reform must provide lasting and dedicated resources for border security, while also requiring accountability from both individuals in the U.S. illegally and unscrupulous employers who game the system for their own economic advantage.

The President expressed his support for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s efforts to move forward on the DREAM Act in the coming weeks, a bipartisan bill that the President cosponsored when he served in the Senate.  The President noted that it is time to stop punishing innocent young people for the actions of their parents, especially when those youth grew up in America and want to serve this country in the military or pursue a higher education they have earned through academic excellence. 

Senator Menendez discussed the comprehensive immigration reform bill that he plans to introduce in the coming weeks.  The President told Senator Menendez that he looks forward to reviewing the bill, noting that he strongly supported the proposal that Senate Democrats outlined earlier this year.  The President reiterated that the strength of that proposal was that it was based on the bipartisan framework developed by Senators Schumer and Graham.