During an exclusive interview with Univision yesterday, President Obama focused on the economy–but he also made some surprising remarks about immigration. Reporter Claudia Botero asked the president about moving forward on comprehensive immigration reform, and Obama answered that he will be pushing the House to vote:
"Well, keep in mind this is not just a Latino issue. This is an American issue. We know our economy will grow faster if immigration reform passes. We know businesses will do better if immigration reform passes. We know that the deficits will be reduced if immigration reform passes; because people coming out of the shadows, paying more taxes, growing, the growth accelerating, all that brings down the deficit, so this is important to everybody.
And we had a very strong Democratic and Republican vote in the Senate. The only thing right now that’s holding it back is again, Speaker Boehner not willing to call the bill on the floor of the House of Representatives. So we’re going to have to get through this crisis that was unnecessary, that was created because of the obsession of a small faction of the Republican Party on the Affordable Care Act.
Once that’s done, you know, the day after I’m going to be pushing to say, call a vote on immigration reform. And if I have to join with other advocates and continue to speak out on that, and keep pushing, I’m going to do so because I think it’s really important for the country. And now is the time to do it."
It appears the partial government shutdown may finally be coming to a close, which means that Obama may start pushing the House for a vote on immigration in the next day or two.
For more about what the president said, you can read the interview transcript (which largely focuses on the economy) in full in English–or watch bits of the interview, presented mostly in English.