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Phyllis Harden

Legislative & Special Projects, Pine Bluff Sand & Gravel
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SENATE VOTES TO QUIT RATHER THAN FIGHT ON IMMIGRATION BILL

June 28, 2007

Washington, D.C.— “I don’t know what’s more broken, our political process or our borders,” said Stephen E. Sandherr, chief executive officer of the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) in response to the U.S. Senate’s vote today not to proceed with a delicately balanced compromise bill, and instead will prepare for a week-long 4th of July recess.

Approximately 80 percent of Americans believe the immigration system is broken. While a few courageous senators took on the tough issues, opponents of the bill have done it a disservice. Instead of trying to pass legislation with workable solutions, the opponents have escalated their rhetoric and divided the country.

“Too many senators have outsourced their judgment,” commented Sandherr.

AGC continues to believe that any legislation should include: a workable, reliable employment verification process; penalties for employers that are proportionate to the violation; a meaningful guest worker program; avoidance of a new debarment process for immigration violations; a path to legal status for illegal immigrants who are working and contributing to society; and no employer liability for the hiring violations of subcontractors or vendors.

“Passing controversial legislation that stirs passions is tough and we hope our elected leaders will rise to the challenge one more time, bridge the gap of a divided nation, and do what is right for our citizens and our businesses,” added Sandherr.

The Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) is the largest and oldest national construction trade association in the United States. AGC represents more than 32,000 firms, including 7,000 of America’s leading general contractors, and over 11,000 specialty-contracting firms. More than 13,000 service providers and suppliers are associated with AGC through a nationwide network of chapters. Visit the AGC Web site at www.agc.org. AGC members are "Building Your Quality of Life.”

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