Senate Immigration Reform Bill Headed to the Senate Floor

The Senate immigration reform bill, the “Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act’’ cleared the Senate Judiciary Committee. Though attempts were made to kill the legislation, it made its way to the Senate floor. The Judiciary Committee debated on several amendments that were filed to the immigration reform bill. 100 amendments were approved and the Committee has strengthened the immigration reform bill of the Gang of Eight. The bill focuses on border security and it would authorize the undocumented immigrants to enter the legalization process. The bill would reform the immigration system of America and more than half of the amendments were adopted by the Judiciary Committee with bipartisan support.

18 senators worked on the amendments for five days and considered 300 amendments. The Committee has adopted 48 amendments that were filed by the Republicans. Senator Marco Rubio stated that the Judiciary Committee has improved the bill through a transparent process. He stated that the immigration system of the country would be modernized and that the bill would meet the needs of the people. The Republicans would have killed the bill, if provisions for same sex couples were included in it. Nevertheless, the Committee has made changes to the immigration reform legislation that was crafted by the Gang of Eight. The Senate Committee has now finished marking up the bill and bill is headed to the Senate floor for a vote and for debate. Members of the House would soon come up with their immigration reform legislation and they may unveil their bill after the Memorial Day recess.

This bill, apart from legalizing the undocumented immigrants, would protect the Americans. It would also address the needs of the asylum seekers and stateless individuals. New programs that would attract high skilled foreign workers and US visa programs that would permit US employers to legally hire low skilled foreign workers would be created. Similarly, it would protect the childhood arrivals who are eligible for DREAM Act who are in the country and the DREAMers who were deported from the country. Most of the amendments that were approved deal with border security and one of the amendments that was approved would initiate fingerprint tracking systems at 10 international airports in the United States within two years from the date of approval of the bill. Another amendment that was approved would not permit the refugees and asylees to travel to their home countries from where they fled and if they are found to travel to those countries, they would not be permitted to stay in the United States as refugees or asylees.