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Secretary Gutierrez: ‘No One Will Catch U.S.’ if Immigration Reform is Done Right

If the United States gets immigration reform right, it will flourish in the 21st century. If Michigan gets immigration reform right, Detroit and cities throughout the state could be revitalized by entrepreneurship. That was the message former U.S. Secretary of Commerce and former CEO of the Kellogg Company delivered on the main stage this afternoon.

During his remarks, Secretary Carlos Gutierrez highlighted the fact that immigrants create jobs and drive economic growth and have historically provided a competitive advantage the U.S. can’t allow to erode. He highlighted three key elements of the immigration debate: securing borders through a new workable system, a path to citizenship for the 11 million undocumented workers and establishing a new 21st century immigration system for the nation.

“If we get (immigration reform) wrong, shame on us … …if we get this right, the 21st century is ours and nobody will catch up to us. I hope you’ll be a part of the effort to make sure we get it right,” Gutierrez said.

Following his remarks, Gutierrez was joined on stage by Harold Ford Jr., former U.S. Representative and NBC News analyst, for a question-and-answer session where he stressed that immigration reform can be part of the rejuvenation of Detroit by encouraging entrepreneurship and growth. This session was sponsored by ITC Holdings Corp.