Famous And Influential Americans: Quotes on Immigration

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A collection of quotations and portraits of some of the most influential American figures and their views on immigration to the United States.

Remember, remember always, that all of us, and you and I especially, are descended from immigrants and revolutionists.

―President Franklin D. Roosevelt

Franklin D. Roosevelt

Every immigrant who comes here should be required within five years to learn English or leave the country.

― President Theodore Roosevelt

Theodore Roosevelt

A nation that cannot control its borders is not a nation.

― President Ronald Reagan 

Ronald Reagan

The land flourished because it was fed from so many sources–because it was nourished by so many cultures and traditions and peoples.

― President Lyndon B. Johnson 

Lyndon B. Johnson

America was indebted to immigration for her settlement and prosperity. That part of America which had encouraged them most had advanced most rapidly in population, agriculture and the arts.

―President James Madison 

James Madison

The U.S. immigration laws are bad – really, really bad. I’d say treatment of immigrants is one of the greatest injustices done in our government’s name.

―Bill Gates


What we need to do is to have a sensible approach to immigration. It needs to be open. It needs to be non-dogmatic and non-bigoted. We need to be firm but reasonable in the way we deal with the problem of illegal immigration. And we need to try to get as many of our immigrants who want to do so to become citizens as quickly as possible so that the American people will all see that this is a part of the process of American history, which is a good one for our country.

―President Bill Clinton

President William Jefferson Clinton in Harlem, New York

I had always hoped that this land might become a safe and agreeable asylum to the virtuous and persecuted part of mankind, to whatever nation they might belong.

―President George Washington


Our journey is not complete until we find a better way to welcome the striving, hopeful immigrants who still see America as a land of opportunity, until bright young students and engineers are enlisted in our workforce rather than expelled from our country.

―President Barack Obama 

Barack Obama

Everywhere immigrants have enriched and strengthened the fabric of American life.

―President John F. Kennedy


Immigration is not just compatible with but is a necessary component of economic growth.

U.S. Representative Dave Reichert


Illegal immigration continues to be a major problem in the United States. We have people waiting to come here legally. And we should not be rewarding people who have come here illegally.

Senator (R) John Barrasso 


We should be the pro-legal immigration party. A party that has a positive platform and agenda on how we can create a legal immigration system that works for immigrants and works for America.

Senator Marco Rubio 


I would staple a green card to the diploma of anyone that graduates with a degree in the physical sciences or engineering in the U.S.

Venture Capatilist John Doerr 

John Doerr


If Congress continues to refuse to act, as president I would do everything possible under the law to go even further

– Hillary Clinton on Immigration Reform

Hillary Clinton

Yes, they broke the law, but it’s not a felony. It’s an act of love, it’s an act of commitment to your family

Jeb Bush On illegal immigration

Jeb Bush



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