Malacanang lauds Biden’s vow to prioritize immigrants’ legal status

National, News

Malacañang banks on incoming US President Joe Biden to stay true to his promise to prioritize offering legal status to an estimated 11 million illegal US immigrants.

Biden recently announced he will immediately ask Congress to provide a pathway to citizenship to an estimated 11 million immigrants who are in the United States without legal status.

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said one good thing to expect is that as early as now President-elect Biden has proposed a law “to legalize the stay of some 11 million illegal aliens in the US, and of course many Filipinos will benefit from that law.”

Roque also expressed hope that bilateral relations between the Philippines and the US would stay strong. He  shrugged off remarks made by Ateneo de Manila political science professor Melay Abao that a Biden presidency would mean that Duterte had lost an ally.

Abao said Duterte has “lost an ally” since the Biden camp is not likely to compromise human rights issues. In an article published in November 2020, the Washington Post  also said Biden’s victory presents “practical challenges” to policies that went unchecked during the presidency under his predecessor, Donald Trump.

Last year, Roque said Duterte would avoid making judgments about Biden until he finally gets to work with him. Democrats like former US President Barack Obama have been critical of the administration’s anti-illegal drugs campaign.

Biden served as Obama’s Vice President for two terms — 2009-2017. He will assume office Wednesday, January 20 and former US Presidents Obama, George W. Bush and Bill Clinton will be there to stand witness, while Trump had earlier he will skip Biden’s inauguration.

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