- The Washington Times - Wednesday, March 18, 2009

COSTA MESA, CALIF. (AP) - President Barack Obama says the United States is a nation of immigrants but the country must have control over its borders.

Speaking at a town hall meeting in Southern California, Obama said immigration is a high-emotion issue that cannot be dealt with in pieces. He says he wants to work with leaders in Congress and in Mexico to come up with a comprehensive plan.

Obama says it’s important for longtime illegal immigrants to have a path to citizenship so they can join unions and get protection from employers who exploit them. He says those illegal immigrants could earn U.S. citizenship if they pay a fine and learn English.

Obama says residents who have put down roots should be able to come out of hiding.

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