Fighting to make sure they don’t lose steam in their push for Congress to act, immigrant-rights groups said Monday that they are planning a major Washington rally on Oct. 8 to try to keep a focus on their issue.
The rally will feature both a concert and a march, and is being billed as the “national exclamation point” to other rallies slated for the preceding days in 60 cities across the country.
The groups are hoping to pressure House Republicans, who have been delaying action on immigration since the Senate passed a bill in June. The Senate bill would legalize most of the estimated 11 million illegal immigrants now in the U.S.
House Republican leaders have said they want to hold a debate, but put off action in July, and have now returned to face a number of pressing spending and debt issues that threaten to crowd out other action.
Similar rallies in 2006 and 2007 helped pressure the Senate to work on immigration in those years — though not always with success. While a bill passed the Senate in 2006, a major push stalled the next year when voters who opposed legalization flooded senators’ offices with angry phone calls.