President Obama met today at the White House with a panel of business leaders -- calling for them to send a "clarion call" to the House to push for an immigration overhaul.
Obama noted the meeting comes on the heels of a press by conservative business and faith leaders endorsing a comprehensive immigration overhaul and that he planned to talk to the business community "about how we can continue to amplify this issue in the coming weeks.
"There’s no reason why we can’t get this done before the end of the year," Obama said in remarks before the meeting. "And I continue to be hopeful that with the leadership of many who are around this table who represent hundreds of thousands of employees and billions of dollars of assets, who are important in their communities all across the country, them joining up with law enforcement, clergy, citizens, to make the case that ultimately folks up on Capitol Hill will do the right thing."
He noted there's been "some resistance from House Republicans," but called it "encouraging" is that a number of House Republicans have signed onto a comprehensive immigration overhaul.
"It’s my estimation that we actually have votes to get comprehensive immigration reform done in the House right now," Obama said. But, he noted, "the politics are challenging for the Speaker and others, and we want to make it as easy for him as possible.
"This is not an issue where we’re looking for a political win," Obama said. "This is one where we’re looking for a substantive win for the U.S. economy and the American people and the businesses that are represented here."
He called on the business people to "make sure that we send out that clarion call up towards Capitol Hill, see if we can get this done before the end of the year."
Those meeting with Obama included Roger Altman, Founder and Chairman, Evercore Partners; Greg Brown, Chairman and CEO, Motorola Solutions; Joe Echevarria, CEO, Deloitte LLP; Marillyn A. Hewson, CEO and President, Lockheed Martin; Edward Rust, Chairman and CEO, State Farm; Arne Sorenson, President and CEO, Marriott; Stephen Schwarzman, Chairman, CEO and Co-Founder, Blackstone and Don Thompson, President and CEO, McDonalds.