Bi-Partisan Senate Committee Paves Way For Immigration Reform

Bi-Partisan Senate Committee Paves Way For Immigration Reform



Looks like we have movement on immigration reform a lot sooner than many anticipated. And wouldn’t you know it, Rubio is front and center.

From Fox News:

Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., one of the eight senators, called the new proposal a “major breakthrough” and said he hopes to turn it into legislation by March — with the goal of passing something out of the Senate “by late spring or summer.”

Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., standing beside him, claimed 2013 is the “best chance” lawmakers will have to tackle immigration for years. […]

The eight senators who unveiled the new principles are Democrats Schumer, Dick Durbin of Illinois, Robert Menendez of New Jersey and Michael Bennet of Colorado; and Republicans McCain, Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, Marco Rubio of Florida and Jeff Flake of Arizona.

So what does their plan outline? Here are details so far…

–Creating a path to citizenship for the estimated illegal immigrants already in the U.S., contingent upon securing the border and better tracking of people here on visas.

–Reforming the legal immigration system, including awarding green cards to immigrants who obtain advanced degrees in science, math, technology or engineering from an American university.

–Creating an effective employment verification system to ensure that employers do not hire illegal immigrants.

–Allowing more low-skill workers into the country and allowing employers to hire immigrants if they can demonstrate they couldn’t recruit a U.S. citizen; and establishing an agricultural worker program.

All in all, this is good news. If this many GOP Senators can get behind it, the GOPers in the House are going have a hard time saying no. Yes, there will plenty that do…but enough to defeat it? Doubtful.

More as it develops…

  • Tully

    I read over the specifics earlier this week, and frankly it looks pretty damn good. With any luck it won’t get mangled into really damn bad in the process of turning it into actual legislation. If there’s a part I don’t like it’s the low-skilled worker provisions, but that’s more due to the structural problem that creates the demand. Namely, that we have (especially in California) created welfare systems that so strongly inhibit our own able-bodied poor from being willing to take low-skilled jobs.

    Not that I blame them — when you would actually lose money and benefits by taking a job, why would you take it?

  • David Summers

    The question is whether it will be real reform or like the last reform, where we ended up just giving illegal aliens citizenship and ignored the promised reforms to enforcement. It sounds OK, but I kinda think that the path to citizenship should only kick in _after_ the other reforms are in place.

  • Tully

    David, yes indeed, that is the problem. Even if the legislation is written as described and not mangled into bad, that doesn’t exempt it from being mangled in execution by this admin — or any other in the future.

    Our government has a long history of passing reasonable and “balanced” legislation only to blow off one side of it to turn it back into a new Frankenstein’s Monster though selective application.

  • Mike

    I would say that, regardless of the state of our welfare system, the US needs to have access to low-cost labor resources. There are jobs out there that are very difficult to perform and difficult to fill, regardless of the welfare pay. To give one example of how some nations obtain low-cost labor, if you travel to Taiwan, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Singapore, etc…you’ll find many of the hardest, boring, repetitive jobs are staffed by Philippinos. They come in under a temporary work visa, work the duration while sending money home to their family, then leave. After a predetermined time, they are allowed to reapply for another work visa. The money they earn, while small compared to the standard of living in the employing nations, is considered very good. If certain workers appear to be highly skilled, then there is the chance that a company will sponsor them for citizenship. The US has a perfect opportunity of working with Mexico in the same manner.