Faith based and civil liberties groups have already started to call part of the sweeping overhaul proposal for immigration too stringent. The groups claim the law makes the march to citizenship too difficult for some undocumented immigrants.
On Tuesday afternoon, President Barack Obama made his first comments on the immigration proposal calling it a clear work of compromise. He cautioned that not everyone involved would get all they wanted included in the legislation and that included himself.
Following a briefing by two of the eight senators who authored the proposal, Obama said the contents were for the most part consistent with his principles for a comprehensive reform bill for immigration. The two senators who briefed the president were Republican John McCain of Arizona and Democrat Charles Schumer of New York.
The new proposal, said the president, would strengthen the U.S. borders with both Canada and Mexico and hold employers of immigrants more accountable if undocumented immigrants are hired knowingly. Obama also commented that the proposal provided the already 11 million undocumented immigrants a path to U.S. citizenship.
Both senators told reporters they were happy with the proposal since for the most part the President was supportive, even though Obama did have a reservation or two. The senators said this was just the beginning of the long process to bring immigration reform to the U.S. The senators commented that how there will be hearings on Capitol Hill, new amendments added to the proposal and debates held on the floor in the Senate.
Lawyers for the American Civil Liberties Union said change was needed in the proposal since it excludes a number of undocumented immigrants from a path to citizenship due to minor crimes or because they cannot pay large fines.