"We should be making it easier" to immigrate to the U.S., Pres. Obama declared in remarks at the Naturalization Ceremony for Servicemembers and Military Spouses at the White House Friday.
It's "in our DNA" to welcome immigrants, Obama said while promoting his immigration reform plan:
"The basic idea of welcoming immigrants to our shores is central to our way of life, it is in our DNA. We believe our diversity, our differences, when joined together by a common set of ideals, makes us stronger, makes us more creative, makes us different. From all these different strands, we make something new here in America. And that's why, if we want to keep attracting the best and brightest from beyond our borders, we're going to have to fix our immigration system, which is broken, and pass commonsense immigration reform."
The U.S. should make it easier - not harder - to enter the U.S., Obama said:
"We shouldn't be making it harder for the best and the brightest to come here, and create jobs here, and grow our economy here. We should be making it easier. And that's why I'm going to keep doing --(Audience member applauds.)
"He agrees with me. (Laughter and applause.) So I'm going to keep doing everything I can do to keep making our immigration system smarter and more efficient so hardworking men and women like all of you have the opportunity to join the American family and to serve our great nation. So we can be stronger and more prosperous and more whole - together."