Republicans working on immigration reform behind the scenes

FLAGLegislation for overhauling the immigration system in the United States has been dormant for some months now in the House of Representatives, but behind the scenes a handful of Republicans are working to advance the cause even while the Capitol argues over healthcare and government spending.

Bob Goodlatte, the House Judiciary Committee chairman, has been talking about finding some legal status for the 11 million undocumented immigrants that are estimated to be currently living illegally in the United States.  He has been working with fellow Virginia Republican Eric Cantor, the House Majority Leader, on a bill for immigration reform that offers citizenship to immigrants who came to the US when they were just children.

Meanwhile, Republicans Ted Poe and Raul Labrador have been collaborating on the creation of a US visas program that would enable more low-skilled workers to come to the United States.  Goodlatte and Republican Mike McCaul, the House Homeland Security Committee chairman, are hoping that there will finally be action on the floor of the House of Representatives by the end of this month in regards to a number of immigration bills that have already passed their committees.

“I would think that would be the next agenda item in the queue after we’ve done with this mess,” McCaul noted in reference to the bitter disputes over the increasing federal debt, the level of government spending and the healthcare law.  Goodlatte has also made it quite clear he intends to have the issue resolved.