Leaders of the Hispanic community in the US are angry and worried at the Senate vote that killed the proposed immigration reform today.
"We are indignant over the vote casted by the US Senate" said Eliseo Medina, Vice President of Service Employee International Union (SEIU) to Univision online. "I think this proposal was clearly killed by the Republican Party."
In a strong press release, the SEIU even added that this vote sends a clear message to the Hispanic community, "You are not welcome in our big tent. We will not forget." http://www.seiu.org/media/pressreleases.cfm?pr_id=1440
Other leaders like Angelica Salas, director of the Coalition for Immigrants Human Rights (CHIRLA) in LA, went even further, saying that "hatred was the winner…the senators preferred to listen to the voices of the racists, which are a minority in this country."
Salas also indicated that the senators' decision was not only a vote against immigrants but also a vote against the Republican President George W Bush.
Other leaders were more conciliatory, "Today's action is a victory for the status quo, and no one should be happy about that. But the Senate vote is a setback, not the death knell, for comprehensive immigration reform. We are not giving up on getting a real, effective, and fair solution to the immigration issue," stated Janet Murguía, NCLR (national Council of La Raza) President and CEO.
In a press conference during Nicaragua's President's visit to Mexico, Mexican President Felipe Calderón accused the US Senate "of making a terrible mistake for not recognizing the problem." The U.S. economy cannot keep going without migrant labor."
Even Nicaraguan president Daniel Ortega Calderon weighed on the issue today " it is a huge mistake because a problem not addressed on time will only escalate with evasion…"
Discontent and disappointment permeate among Hispanics throughout the Americas but most Hispanic leaders do agree in something: this is just the beginning of a fight for a fair immigration reform.