Department of Homeland Security

George W. Bush says failure of immigration reform one of his biggest regrets

Former President George W. Bush said during an interview that aired Sunday that one of his biggest regrets was a failure to reform the U.S.'s immigration system.

In an interview excerpt broadcast on CBS' "Sunday Morning" anchor Norah O'Donnell asked Bush what he considered to be the biggest disappointment of his presidency, referring to a 2006 speech from the Oval Office in which Bush said "America can be a lawful society and a welcoming society at the same time."

When O'Donnell said it had been 15 years since that address and "still nothing's been done," Bush responded: "No, a lot of executive orders, but all that means is that Congress isn't doing its job."

 "Is it one of the biggest disappointments of your presidency, not being -," O'Donnell asked Bush. "Yes, it really is. I campaigned on immigration reform. I made it abundantly clear to voters this is something I intended to do," Bush answered.

Bush said he would debate and lobby Republicans on immigration on the issue of providing a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants should they pass a background check and pay back taxes should that become a proposal under the Biden administration.

Bush was promoting his new book "Out of Many, One: Portraits of American Immigrants," which is based on oil paintings by the former president on national figures and migrants.

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