Evangelicals: Pray for Boehner on immigration reform
December 5th, 2013
12:24 PM ET
1 year ago

Evangelicals: Pray for Boehner on immigration reform

Washington (CNN) - A group of evangelicals in favor of passing immigration reform have a message for House Speaker John Boehner: "We're praying for you."

In new ads, Evangelical Immigration Table–group that has been behind immigration reform on Capitol Hill–asks people to pray for Boehner and House Republican leadership on immigration reform and urge those leaders to listen to their prayers.

The group says the ad will air on WTOP, a radio station in Washington, D.C., as well as 30 Christian radio stations in Texas and North Carolina. A Spanish-speaking iteration of the spot will also air in Southern California.

"Our immigration system is broken and it is hurting everyone," says Dub Karriker, senior pastor at the Christian Assembly Church in Durham, N.C. "Families are separated, employers can't find the workers they need, and the undocumented who want to get right with the law are told to get in a line that doesn't exist."

The ad continues: "More than ever, Speaker Boehner needs our prayers. Congress can pass a true conservative solution that will actually fix our immigration system...Please join me in praying for Speaker Boehner and House leadership that God will help them find an immigration solution that reflect biblical values."

The ads all feature local pastors from the areas where they are running.

In print, the ad appeared in the Express newspaper in Washington, D.C on Thursday.

CNN emailed a spokesman for Boehner's office about the ad but did not receive a response by the time this article was published.

On a Thursday call with reporters, Leith Anderson, president of the National Association of Evangelicals and a leading member of Evangelical Immigration Table, said North Carolina, Texas and California were selected because "they are significant places in terms of the Congress."

The group, which formed earlier this year, has brought together leaders from the sometimes fractured world of evangelical Christian politics with the express goal of passing immigration reform. Groups involved include the Southern Baptist Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, the National Association of Evangelicals, Sojourners and Focus on the Family.

This is not the first ad campaign the group has launched. On top of events across the country, according to the group's figures, Evangelical Immigration Table has spent over $1 million on paid media efforts.

Their work, however, has not led to legislative success.

Although President Barack Obama made immigration reform one of his second term priorities and the Senate in June passed immigration reform–with some Republican support–the House of Representatives has done very little to move on the issue.

Last month, Boehner insisted that while immigration reform was "absolutely not" dead, he had "no intention" of negotiating with the Democratic-led Senate over its comprehensive immigration proposal.

Many Republicans in Congress who oppose the Senate plan–which includes an eventual pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants currently living in the United States–have said they want to deal with immigration reform through a number of smaller bills, not one larger piece of legislation. Some House Democrats have said they won't agree to that approach.

Since the law failed to move in the House, groups urging the passage of immigration reform have made Boehner the focus of their frustration on the bill's lack of momentum. Evangelical Immigration Table brought evangelicals to Washington to urge passage of the law earlier this year and for most of 2013, Boehner's Capitol Hill office has been the site of immigration protests.


Filed under: Ads • Immigration • John Boehner
soundoff (28 Responses)
  1. Pam from Iowa

    someone needs to pray for the heathens like Boehner!
    He is certainly not a Christian!!!!!

    December 5, 2013 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  2. Richard Long

    Same people that say, "Thy shall not steal" are supporting criminal immigrants that steal from US citizens every day

    December 5, 2013 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  3. Rudy NYC

    When the Speaker gets into his "Boehner Humbug" mode, we need to say a prayer for most everyone.

    December 5, 2013 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  4. Donna

    Interesting how the leftists will use religion to further their goals when it is expedient. And then attack it and ridicule it as well as the people of faith when it is in their way.

    Wake up America. You are being played for fools once again by the left.

    December 5, 2013 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  5. Wire Palladin, S.F.

    With all his time off, Boehner does not have time to bring the senate bipartisan immigration bill to a vote. He complained about all the pages he hasn't read. Over $200,000 in salary for nothing makes the tan man one of the worst cases of welfare fraud.

    December 5, 2013 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm |
  6. smith

    Can they include a great wall in their prayers? Once thats is done then we can start some real reform.

    December 5, 2013 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  7. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA -aka- Take Back The House -aka- No Redemption Votes

    Pray for them? You can pray for Boehner all you want. There's no helping the rest of his radical caucus.

    December 5, 2013 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  8. simplyput

    Legal immigration good; illegal immigration no.

    December 5, 2013 12:51 pm at 12:51 pm |
  9. Lynda/Minnesota

    I can remember as a young child growing up Lutheran (Missouri Synod) praying for our government and government officials. What I can't remember is suggesting to God whom to favor politically.

    And while we very rarely offer prayers in church to our government anymore, it has never been stated publicily in my church that God DOES favor one political party over the other.

    Then again, we have never pray AGAINST our government or government leadership either.

    December 5, 2013 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  10. Gurgyl

    In fact all USA needs to pray for getting rid off these useless congress thugs. Nation needs better people that work for USA–not on Wars., nor NRA, nor lobby, nor greedy. Greed is so huge lately. Yes, nation needs to be CAPITALISTIC, but less greed.

    December 5, 2013 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  11. rs

    I stand guilty of hurling slings and arrows at Mr. Boehner. I think it is hard to deny his tenure as Speaker has been unproductive, and clearly skewed by the radicalism within the membership of his caucus which has no doubt made them far less functional overall. I can also say I wouldn't take his job for diamonds.
    It is however interesting to see one element of the GOP base beginning to shift around immigration- ad the same group will likely pivot on the poor. It would be really interesting if the evangelicals wind up leading the GOP back to some semblance of the middle ground and a more humane policy discussion.

    December 5, 2013 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  12. Gunderson

    Aw, Humm,
    Just other day i ask God for a couple million dollars. But alas, he no deliver! To God a second is just like a million years. Maybe God answer Evangelical's prayer in a second or two.

    December 5, 2013 01:10 pm at 1:10 pm |
  13. Rudy NYC

    Lynda/Minnesota observed:

    I can remember as a young child growing up Lutheran (Missouri Synod) praying for our government and government officials. What I can't remember is suggesting to God whom to favor politically.

    And while we very rarely offer prayers in church to our government anymore, it has never been stated publicily in my church that God DOES favor one political party over the other.

    Then again, we have never pray AGAINST our government or government leadership either.
    -------------------

    [ co-sign ]

    December 5, 2013 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  14. rs

    Donna

    Interesting how the leftists will use religion to further their goals when it is expedient. And then attack it and ridicule it as well as the people of faith when it is in their way.
    ___________________
    Donna- like that isn't standard operating procedure for the Right? Look at the hypocracy of the Right! "Pro-life" even to the extreme of placing zygote's rights over that of the mother, then they turn around and steal $40 billion in SNAP funds from primarily women and children at Christmas time (no less)!. What does the Bible tell us about the rich (and paying taxes)- hello! The GOP missed that one. Has it not occured to you (perhaps) that virtually every action by our Lord Jesus in the New Testament is a "liberal" one, and is the stuff the GOP tries daily to stamp out?
    The Right uses the Bible and Christianity like a bumper sticker phrase- but the sure don't live it.

    December 5, 2013 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  15. Tommy G

    I pray that our federal government will start enforcing our current immigration laws and start rounding up and deporting the milllions of illegal country invaders that live here without fear of being deported because our own governemnt refuses to enforce the laws of this nation.

    New laws that will be equally unenforced will solve nothing. Will the Democrats THEN support the roundup and deportation of people here illegally after the new law is passed? OF COURSE NOT!

    This is all just another CON JOB by the left. We already did this once and here we are again. NO MORE LEFT WING CON JOBS!

    December 5, 2013 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
  16. TommyBoyJr

    Believe me I am praying, but not for Boehner.
    I am praying for all the lawabiding immigrants who stood in line proudly to become an American Citizen.
    I am praying for all the Congressmen to do the right thing and protect our borders.
    I am praying for the low wage American citizens, born here or naturalized that are having their wages cut by illegal aliens that sneak in, set up residency, start dropping anchor babies, demand healthcare and now citizenship.

    December 5, 2013 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  17. ARMYCSM

    Praying does change things but...

    December 5, 2013 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  18. Anonymous

    It's kind of odd that they ask for selective prayers. How about "Pray for Peace", pray for America, pray for the
    World, etc etc etc.............

    December 5, 2013 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  19. Silence DoGood

    " that reflect biblical values"

    Radical right wing seems to be always in a world of bumper sticker opposites:
    – pushing to convert the country to their State Religion AND claim Christianity is about to be wiped out in the US
    – Obama is doing nothing AND has control of everything as dictator
    – Obama is destroying the military AND will use the military to dominate the people
    – wants government out of private lives AND wants laws to tell women what to do and who we can marry
    – thinks government is broken AND breaks government to get their way

    December 5, 2013 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  20. Tampa Tim

    Leave it to baggers like Gunderson to pray for his own material well being. That is so republican of him.

    December 5, 2013 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  21. Rick McDaniel

    I am totally, 100% opposed to any immigration reform, that doesn't REQUIRE shutting down illegal traffic on our borders FIRST........and proof of that.......before any other reforms are passed.

    December 5, 2013 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  22. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Lynda Minnesota
    And while we very rarely offer prayers in church to our government anymore
    -------------------------------------------------
    Isn't that interesting Lynda?
    I am here to tell you my dear friend, that here in the state of Maryland my Catholic church would offer up prayers for "our President and elected officials, so that they may blah, blah, blah". This was a common practice at my well-attended church, that offers 6 masses on Sunday. That time honored practice dissappeared in 2009.
    Gone.
    Completely.
    I left as well for many years. It was just too blatant for me.
    I've started coming back.
    I wear an Obama t-shirt to every mass I attend.
    We should ALL make our own little personal statement and offer up our own prayers for our President and elected officials that they do right by those that have no voice, are disempowered, disenfranchised, and just basically screwed.

    December 5, 2013 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  23. Rudy NYC

    Tommy G

    I pray that our federal government will start enforcing our current immigration laws and start rounding up and deporting the milllions of illegal country invaders that live here without fear of being deported because our own governemnt refuses to enforce the laws of this nation.
    ----------------------------------
    Seriously? You want a group of immigration enforcers to go around hunting for illegal immigrants? Let's see how that would work in practice, shall we? They would knock on a door, flash a badge, enter and thoroughly search a home or business, and do it at any time of the day or night. Refusal to open your door would have consequences. Once suspects are captured, they are thrown into a waiting paddy wagon as the rest of the neighborhood is searched. Once the paddy wagon is full, the detainees are shipped off to a prison as they await immedaite deportment.

    What laws on the books are not being enforced? I ask because as far as I know, we don't have any laws on our books that permit law enforcement to act in the ways described above. That sort of police brutality is usually only carried out by brutal dictators and communist regimes. Right? Is that what you really want?

    December 5, 2013 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  24. John

    They want Boehner and Co. "... to listen to their prayers?" Who are they praying to here? I see hellfire and damnation coming to everyone involved. Including, of course, Mr. Boehner and Co.

    December 5, 2013 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  25. PulSe

    I hope these 'evangelicals' have have completes their ministry services in Mexico and other points south – lifting up these populations where they live – instead of spitting on American law.

    Prayer is cheap.

    December 5, 2013 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
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