Missouri Senators debate immigration reform in 2013
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Missouri Senators debate immigration reform in 2013

Date: December 13, 2012
By: Brendan Cullerton
State Capitol Bureau

While significant immigration reform has stalled at the federal level, Missouri Senators tried to take matters into their own hands.
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Wrap: Missouri Senators held an open hearing to discuss possible changes in illegal immigration policy.

The state passed a bill in 2008 that prohibits illegal immigrants from receiving drivers licenses.

Director of an immigrant advocacy group Vanessa Crawford says Missouri's attitude toward immigrants is hurting communities.

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Description: "Placid and explicit local policies against immigrants is a real problem in people's life. That is what is driving people out of communities."
Jackson County Senator, Republican Will Kraus says there is a problem with illegal immigrants getting into car accidents without insurance or licenses.

Reporting from the state Capitol, I'm Brendan Cullerton.

Missouri Senators debated the damage the state is doing to itself by closing the doors to illegal immigrants, but also discussed benefits of having legal immigrants in the state.
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Wrap: Republican Senator Will Kraus says Missouri has a problem with immigrants getting into car accidents without insurance.

Democratic St. Louis Senator Maria Chapelle-Nadal says legal immigration can actually improve the state. Just look at Ritenour High in St. Louis.

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Description: "With the diversity that they had. They went up three points in their APR. Just because they were different students there with different backgrounds, it was not a hindrance to their overall outcome."

A spokesperson with a group that advocates immigration for economic growth says Missouri is hurting its economy by turning away illegal immigrants as potential workers.

Reporting from the state Capitol, I'm Brendan Cullerton.

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