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California Lawmakers Welcome Immigration Action

Scott F, flickr
 

Scott F, flickr

Executive action announced by President Barrack Obama Thursday night means millions of undocumented immigrants in California will have the opportunity to temporarily stay in the country legally. 

California has the largest undocumented immigrant population in the United States. UC Berkeley Sociology Professor Irene Blioemraad says nearly 3 million live in the state.

"So California’s definitely a state with a significant undocumented population," she says. "And it’s throughout the state from the southern border all the way up into Napa and Sonoma valleys."

Republican Assemblyman Rocky Chavez says he's worried what the temporary nature of Obama's actions will mean for farmers and families in Sonoma and beyond.

"One of the things we need is stability. When you talk to the business and the agriculture, they need to know they are going to have a stable workforce. Two years is not a stable workforce," he says. "When you’re talking about families, having your parents separated three years from now, that’s not a stable environment for children."

But state Senate President Kevin de Leon says Obama’s actions will be good for California's economy and its immigrants.

"We’re the eight largest economy in the entire world," he says. "When these immigrants are able to fully participate in California’s economy then that will only strengthen our economic growth."

Governor Jerry Brown issued a brief statement praising Obama for taking action and calling on Congress to “finish the job.”