Five representatives of Irish immigration reform advocacy groups were invited to two high level White House meetings on August 11 and 12. Obama Chief of Staff Bill Daley attended.
The first meeting included a wide representation of European and Mediterranean ethnic groups at which these groups presented their various priorities for immigration reform.
The group agreed to plan an initiative to work with the Obama administration to present these priorities at grass roots meetings around the country.
The Irish immigration advocates spoke in favor of long term legalization objectives and the creation of adequate future flow opportunities for Irish immigrants through a targeted E-3 visa for the Irish.
Representing the administration at the meeting were White House Chief of Staff Bill Daley, Director of Intergovernmental Affairs Cecelia Muñoz and Office of Public Engagement staffers Kyle Lierman and Stephanie Valencia.
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Representing the Irish community were Ciaran Staunton of the Irish Lobby for Immigration Reform, Ned McGinley and Dan Dennehy of the AOH, Stella O’Leary of Irish American Democrats, and former Congressman Bruce Morrison.
The following day, the same Irish group met with representatives of the White House Domestic Policy Council (Felicia Escobar) and of the Department of Homeland Security (Brandon Prelogar).
The agenda focused on Irish immigration issues. The administration committed to a continuing dialog to advance community objectives on creating legal future flows in which those already in the U.S. and those in Ireland could participate.
This included seeking support for the targeted Irish E-3 visa.