Former President George W. Bush urged lawmakers to come to a "positive resolution" on immigration reform, as members of the House met to consider their position on the overhaul package passed in the Senate in June.
"We can uphold our tradition of assimilating immigrants, and honoring our heritage of our nation built on the rule of law. But we have a problem. The laws governing the immigration system aren't working," Bush said at a naturalization ceremony Wednesday for new citizens at his presidential library in Texas, according to NBC
Bush refused to comment on the details of the legislation before Congress but reinforced the need for reform of an immigration system he called "broken," NBC News reported.
"I don't intend to get involved in the politics or the specifics of policy, but I do hope there's a positive resolution to the debate," he said. "And I hope, during the debate, we keep a benevolent spirit in mind, and we understand the contributions immigrants make to our country."
Bush made similar comments earlier this week on ABC News' "This Week."
He also said during the interview that while reform proposals will be difficult to get through Congress, he believes lawmakers are making progress and there's a chance reform efforts will be successful.
In 2007, Bush sought to pass an immigration bill similar to the one currently being considered, including a plan to establish a pathway to citizenship for the nation's undocumented immigrants and measures to establish tougher border security.
The bill, however, failed to secure enough support to pass as many Republicans were opposed to what they said was a plan to grant "amnesty" to those living in the country illegally, according to Reuters
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