National Catholic Reporter

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Southern Baptists Back \"Path to Citizenship\"

In a move that no doubt reflects the rising number of evangelical Latinos swelling their ranks, the Southern Baptist Convention, long one of the most conservative religious bodies in the country, endorsed a resolution calling for undocumented workers to be given a "path to citizenship" as a part of comprehensive immigration reform.

"I think Southern Baptists understand it’s just not politically viable to send an estimated 12 to 15 million undocumented immigrants back where they came from," Rev. Paul Jimenez, chairman of the SBC’s resolutions committee, told The Associated Press. "It’s not humane either."

Here is some political cover for any Republican presidential candidate who wants to re-frame the immigration debate along the lines long suggested by former President George W. Bush. It is political suicide to alienate the fastest growing demographic in the country over the long haul, but it may be immediate political suicide to tackle the issue in the GOP primaries. It will take courage to do so. Let's see if any such courage is forthcoming.

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