Pro-immigration reform groups are revving up efforts to force leaders to tackle with legislation amid concerns the issue could get shoved to the sidelines amid other high-profile fights on Capitol Hill.

“We need some action,” former Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez, who served under former President George W. Bush, said Thursday.

“This is what happens when immigration reform is important, but it’s not the number one issue. You can keep on sort of delaying it because you have to take care of the fiscal cliff, which now looks like it’s going to be a fiscal stairway that goes all the way to the end of the term. … And guns, I think that has surpassed immigration reform on priorities.”

Gutierrez spoke on a panel of faith, law enforcement and business leaders organized by the pro-reform National Immigration Forum. For legislation to succeed, he said it must be the “number one priority for the president, for Congress, and that hasn’t happened yet.”