Zuckerberg-backed group makes new immigration push
November 18th, 2013
12:23 PM ET
9 years ago

Zuckerberg-backed group makes new immigration push

Washington (CNN) - One week after House Speaker John Boehner repeated his vow to never hold a vote on the Senate's immigration reform bill, a public advocacy group backed by Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg says it's launching a new ad campaign urging congressional leaders to take action on the issue.

FWD.us announced Monday a new series of English and Spanish-language TV commercials called "We Wait" that it says will run on national cable and in some key local markets, as well as online. A source with knowledge of the group's efforts says FWD.us is spending six figures on the ad buy.

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The 60-second spot starts with a narrator saying "on the need to fix our broken immigration system, there are signs both political parties in Washington get it."

It then uses a clip of President Barack Obama saying "Washington is lagging behind the country on this," and Boehner saying "this issue has been around far too long."

The ads also use clips of House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor and Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy talking about the need for immigration reform.

The spot concludes with the narrator saying "Americans are tired of empty rhetoric. It is time for every leader to come through on their promise and fix our broken immigration system. Tell Congress: the time is now. Fix America's broken immigration system."

After the GOP lost last year's battle for the White House and failed to win back the Senate, thanks in part to a very poor performance with Hispanic voters, some Republican leaders said it was time for Congress to pass immigration reform.

In June the Senate passed an immigration reform bill, with some GOP support, that includes an eventual pathway to citizenship for most of the nation's 11 million undocumented immigrants. But thanks to fierce opposition from a large bloc of House conservatives, the bill appears dead in the House.

Last week Boehner not only repeated his long standing opposition to voting on the Senate measure, he went a step further by saying "I'll make clear we have no intention ever of going to conference on the Senate bill."

One of the most recent national polls on immigration, conducted earlier this month by Quinnipiac University, indicated that 57% said undocumented workers living in the U.S. should be allowed to stay in the country and eventually apply for citizenship.

Politico was first to report the new ad.

Zuckerberg, who backs FWD.us, has embraced immigration reform, telling CNN New Day anchor Chris Cuomo in August that  "my goal in this is to help support folks who care deeply about getting this done on both sides and hopefully we can make a difference."

"Eleven million undocumented people. That's a lot of people who's lives we can improve and make the country stronger," added Zuckerberg.

–CNN Political Editor Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.

Filed under: Immigration
soundoff (29 Responses)
  1. wendel

    repos need to shut up and give it a rest. if they spent as much time working on immigration ,health care, jobs and the economy as they do complaining about it. Gee we might accomplish something. Same ol garbage over and over with no solution. They need to wake up before the party is no more.

    November 18, 2013 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  2. GatorDude

    Alternatively, define "economic treason" as a crime and start trials for people who hire illegals or H1B workers.

    November 18, 2013 02:12 pm at 2:12 pm |
  3. The REAL Truth...

    @Fair is Fair – Obama should sign a bill repealing Obamacare. The majority of America supports having it repealed. It's that simple.
    Typical response sweetie.. it's NOT that simple. Heck most right wingers when asked thought the Affordable Care Act was great but hated Obamacare. Most Americans want WORKING affordable healthcare, not the current system... but that's not on the GOP's agenda ..

    November 18, 2013 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  4. The Real Tom Paine

    -A True Conservative

    @Rudy – OK, let's enforce our current laws. We agree! o it impacts businesses who have hired illegal aliens – so what? Are we a nation of laws or are we not? Or is this about something other than concern for illegals? Does the left have an ulterior motive?
    How about recognizing that you cannot have a free society when you have the draconian sweeps the Right seems to want? How about trying to find a workable compromise instead of falling back on the " enforce the law" mantra the Right seems to mouth because they don't want to admit how petrified they are at the prospect of a country that they no longer recognize? Governing a country is about adapting to changing circimstances, not about ignoring them behind a twisted interpretation of the Constitution that never allows for change. The fact is that, even with record deportations, its never enough for you people. What kind of country do you want? If you want to have legal immigration easier, than do something instead of appealing to the paranoid bigots who refuse to move forward.

    November 18, 2013 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
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