Vice President Joe Biden isn't waiting for any type of amnesty tied to immigration reform bill to welcome the nearly 12 million undocumented immigrants in the United States as American citizens.
"You know, 11 million people live in the shadows. I believe they're already American citizens," Biden told a gathering of the U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce on Thursday, according to The Hill
. "These people are just waiting, waiting for a chance to contribute fully. And by that standard, 11 million undocumented aliens are already Americans, in my view."
Those words might be another instance of the vice president going off the White House script. Even as House Democrats try to move forward on an immigration bill, immigrant rights advocates have criticized the Obama administration's deportation policies for being too aggressive.
As The Hill reported, Obama is trying to fend off Republican critics who paint him as weak on illegal immigration, while also trying to push immigration legislation forward and maintain the Democrats' hold on Hispanic voters.
Biden praised the courage of immigrants who come to a land where they don't speak the language and work hard to provide for their children.
"All they want – they just want a decent life for their kids, a chance to contribute to a free society, a chance to put down roots and help build the next great American century. I really believe that. That's what they're fighting for," Biden said, according to CNSNews.com.
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