Bloggings on Immigration Law and Policy

by Greg Siskind

Republican Senator Calls for Same Sex Couple Immigration Rights

Maine's Republican Senator Susan Collins has called for passage of the Uniting American Families Act, a bill that she has co-sponsored with several Democrats which would treat same sex partnerships equally to their heterosexual counterparts. Collins has supported this for a while, but is now also calling for inclusion of the UAFA language in a comprehensive immigration reform bill. The bill would benefit an estimated 40,000 couples.
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Private Donors Stepping in to Fund Scholarships for DACA Recipients

I've had young people in my office who are overjoyed at being granted legal status under the DACA program and gaining the ability to work. But for many of the brightest, the dream is to go college. And current law in most states means these young people are not eligible to receive in state tuition and also bars them from receiving financial aid. So the door is closed to many of them. It's nice to see good samaritans donating money to colleges to help fund scholarship programs for the DREAMers.

The Gang of Eight

Politico has a piece today that mentions eight Senators as working behind the scenes on a bipartisan bill on comprehensive immigration reform. They're names you've seen before and some new ones:

Chuck Schumer - D-NY - the chair of the Senate Immigration Subcommittee

Dick Durbin - D-IL - the powerful Senator is great on family issues, but has been dodgy on the employment ones

Michael Bennet - D-CO - He is not well-known on this issue, but is remembered as being one of the seats expected to go GOP in 2010 but was saved for the Dems by Latino voters

Bob Menendez (D-NJ) - The Dems only Latino Senator, he's great on family issues, but will block employment immigration measures if the family side of the equation is ignored

John McCain (R-AZ) - The old John McCain is back!

Lindsey Graham (R-SC) - He's the pragmatist who warned the GOP all through 2012 that they were in big trouble if they continued down the anti path. Proven right, he's now trying to save the GOP from itself on immigration.

Mike Lee (R-UT) - A genuine Tea Party conservative who also is a moderate on immigration issues and comes from a solid red state that has decided not to emulate Arizona. Could give some cover for those on the right.

 Sen.-elect Jeff Flake (R-AZ) - He worked with Dems several years ago in the House to produce a really good CIR bill, then pivoted to the right in order to get elected to the Senate. Like McCain, he's back to where he started on this issue. 

Two other Republican Senators to watch who aren't discussed much in the piece - Marco Rubio of Florida and Rand Paul of Kentucky.

About The Author

Greg Siskind is a partner in Siskind Susser's Memphis, Tennessee, office. After graduating magna cum laude from Vanderbilt University, he received his Juris Doctorate from the University of Chicago. Mr. Siskind is a member of AILA, a board member of the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society, and a member of the ABA, where he serves on the LPM Publishing Board as Marketing Vice Chairman. He is the author of several books, including the J Visa Guidebook and The Lawyer's Guide to Marketing on the Internet. Mr. Siskind practices all areas of immigration law, specializing in immigration matters of the health care and technology industries. He can be reached by email at

The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author(s) alone and should not be imputed to ILW.COM.
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