Raul Labrador, the Idaho Republican Congressman who is one of the few Hispanic GOP members in Congress, disappointed pro-immigration advocates when he came out today opposing a path to citizenship for immigrants under comprehensive immigration reform. Labrador is a surprise because he is said to be on a House version of the Gang of Eight working on an immigration bill and by taking this position now, it's hard to imagine he'll continue to be part of those negotiations. Perhaps he was trying to divert attention away from another issue?
In the mean time, Darryl Issa, the powerful California Republican House Member, says he is for a pathway to citizenship and supports the Senate's framework.
Of course, as I've noted before, there is a third way between creating a permanent inferior class not entitled to citizenship and creating a new special pathway for all of these people. Update our immigration categories so we don't have backlogs from here to the moon and then allow the legalized individuals to pursue green cards through our conventional categories. Applicants would get priority dates that would ensure they don't jump ahead of anyone in the queues in the various green card categories under which they're applying. Hence, no special treatment and the only path to citizenship is the one they would pursue if they were starting from scratch today.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org.