"We will get immigration reform. The Democrats want it, and the Republicans need it."
CNN political analyst David Gergen spoke those words well before any polls had closed on Election Day. But now they ring loud and clear.
Long before Tuesday, President Obama knew that Latinos were crucial to his reelection prospects. "Should I win a second term, a big reason I will win a second term is because the Republican nominee and the Republican Party have so alienated the fastest-growing demographic group in the country, the Latino community," the president said in an Oct. 23 interview with the Des Moines Register.
A sizable majority of Americans across the political spectrum agree with Latinos that we need a new way forward on immigration.
In an exit poll of 19,728 voters on Tuesday by Edison Research, almost two-thirds said that "most illegal immigrants working in the U.S." should be offered a chance to apply for legal status.
Conservative leaders and pundits can read the writing on the wall: Democrats and Republicans must come together to work on a bipartisan immigration process.
Take, for example, the prescient words of Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform. At a Midwest immigration summit in October, Norquist cautioned that hostility to immigrants is a vote loser, and he placed immigration at the center of economic concerns.