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Congressman Grijalva: the GOP can no longer ignore the demographic of the Hispanic community

Congressman Grijalva: the GOP can no longer ignore the demographic of the Hispanic community

CREATED Feb 23, 2013

Reporter: Guy Atchley
Web Producer: Ina Ronquillo, Rikki Mitchell

TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - Congressman Grijalva says the GOP can no longer ignore the demographic of the Hispanic community.

"And the Republican party, unless they want to become a permanent minority party of this country, have to reach out to that community," said Grijalva.

Grijalva says a bipartisan skeleton of border reform is now on the table.

"Border security, pathway to legalization, a guest worker concept, making the Dream Act…codifying it into permanent law and that, and some general language on family unification," he says.

Now, Grijalva says it's time to put flesh on the skeleton.

And he believes a good starting point is to listen to what border ranchers have been saying for years.

"You're going to have to look at where you deploy, your border patrol, how it's deployed," he says. "And closer to the border so we can protect not only property, but lives. Much bigger deterrent."

Grijalva says lawmakers and the public are tired of the same old rhetoric they've heard for years. And if ever there were a time to seize the moment, he says this is it.

"Will there be a compromise? Yes. Will it be the pure bill that I want? No. Will it incrementally take a huge step to settling what I think the most divisive issue is, in this country? Will it begin the process, integrating fully aspiring Americans into this country of ours? To its values and to its reality, absolutely!"

This story is part of a KGUN9 On Your Side special called Arizona Border: On The Front Lines.