More than 100 donors to the Republican Party on Tuesday sent a letter to GOP members of the U.S. Congress urging them to move forward with an immigration reform package that includes "legal status" for the nation's estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants.

The letter is part of a pressure campaign headed by former Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez.

The effort includes other prominent figures such as Tom Stemberg, a founder of Staples; former Vice President Dan Quayle and Karl Rove, long-time adviser to former President George W. Bush.

"We write to urge you to take action to fix our broken immigration system," the letter begins.

"We believe that it is the responsibility of our elected leaders to ensure that our laws keep us safe and help our economy grow. Our current immigration system does neither," the letter states.

The donors' letter comes at a crucial moment in the negotiations and debate over immigration reform after in June the Senate approved its own proposal and when the ball is in the court of the Republican-controlled House of Representatives, where conservative lawmakers are the ones who hold the key to the issue at this stage.

Congress begins its summer recess next week, and thus it appears that the nation will have to wait until September for the next steps in the legislative process of crafting an immigration reform package. EFE