Washington, D.C. President Bush, calling the nation's current immigration situation unacceptable, urged senators to try again to pass legislation that he described as imperfect but the best option available.
In his weekly Saturday radio address, Bush said the bill would not grant amnesty to illegal immigrants, that they would have to pay fines and take other steps to get on a path to legal status and possibly citizenship.
"Securing the border and upholding family values are not partisan concerns," the president said. "They must be addressed, and this bill is the best way to do it."
Bush recorded his address Friday in Germany where he was attending a summit with other world leaders.
The White House and a bipartisan group of senators drafted the wide-ranging bill, but they could not overcome steady attacks from the left and right during weeks of Senate wrangling. When the Senate failed Thursday to end debate and schedule a vote, Democratic leaders set the bill aside with no promise of reviving it.