Immigration reform and the global reflex

Samuel Rodriguez, president of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference, also serves on the Board of Directors of Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary, National Association of Evangelicals, and Christianity Today.

The call for immigration reform yesterday by evangelical leaders got coverage from all the big media outlets. The New York Times did an especially nice job highlighting the role of Hispanic evangelicals in helping to transform views on immigration. This is the sort of movement, I argue in Moral Minority, that will turn the evangelical left into a viable, even vibrant, sector of evangelicalism. Here’s a taste from the Times article:

Some of the nation’s most influential evangelical groups urged a solution to illegal immigration on Tuesday that defies the harsh rhetoric of the Republican primary race, which continues to undermine Mitt Romney’s appeal to Hispanic voters.

The call by the groups represents a recognition that in one bedrock element of the conservative movement — evangelical Christians — the demography of their followers is changing, becoming more Hispanic, and that Republican leaders risk being out of step with their hawkish talk of border fences and immigration crackdowns like those in Arizona. . . .

“This is the tipping point to finally convince Republican operatives that they must redeem the narrative on immigration reform in order to be a viable party in America’s political landscape in the 21st century,” said the Rev. Samuel Rodriguez, president of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference.

Mr. Rodriguez said he met last week with aides to Mr. Romney, the presumptive Republican nominee, to urge him to moderate his positions.