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  • Blogging: Proposed Immigration Amendments Starting to Be Posted by Greg Siskind

    Proposed Immigration Amendments Starting to Be Posted

    by Greg Siskind

    Proposed Immigration Amendments Starting to Be Posted

    45 (out of hundreds expected to be introduced) are now online.

    Cornyn Amendment Text Now Available

    It's long because he's completely replacing Title I of S.744. I'll read though it and report back.

    Rubio Files English Language Amendment

    Really? This is how you send the message that your party is welcoming to Hispanics? We've never needed to mandate English's use and we've had plenty of periods in American history where other languages were pretty prominent. Very disappointing.

    House Gang of Seven Member Expects Bill By Next Week

    From the Hill:

    Rep. Xavier Becerra (D-Calif.) predicted Tuesday that the House group negotiating comprehensive immigration reform will have a deal by next week.

    “There's a high-level of confidence that, in the next week or two … we'll be able to present a complement to the Senate bill," Becerra, one of negotiators, said Tuesday following an immigration event at the National Press Club. “It will be a bipartisan effort.”

    Becerra also commented on the departure of Raul Labrador:

    Becerra conceded that Labrador's exit is a “bump in the road,” but predicted the Idaho conservative will still play a key role if the House hopes to pass a bill.

    “Congressman Labrador is someone who will influence what we do quite a bit, and I'm hoping that he will be one of those who helps us champion a bipartisan reform [bill],” said Becerra, the chairman of the Democratic Caucus.

    Senate Bill Passes First Major Vote by 82-15 Margin

    The Senate just held a cloture vote to proceed with debate on S.744, the comprehensive immigration reform bill. This will allow the formal consideration of amendments to the bill before it goes for a final vote later in the month. The motion passed by a vote of 82-15. I'll have a break down of who voted how shortly. Keep in mind that just because a Senator votes to proceed with debate doesn't mean they'll vote in favor of the bill later on.

    Interestingly, the new Senator from New Jersey voted Aye to proceed with the bill. Good news.  Thanks Senator Chiesa.

    All the Democrats voted aye. Here are the Republicans who voted no:

    Inhofe (OK)

    Kirk (IL)

    Lee (UT)

    Risch (ID)

    Scott (SC)

    Sessions (AL)

    Shelby (AL)

    Vitter (LA)

    Enzi (WY)

    Barrasso (WY)

    Crapo (ID)

    Grassley (IA)

    Roberts (KS)

    Boozman (AR)

    Cruz (TX)



    Boehner: Immigration Bill Should Pass by End of Year

    John Boehner spoke this morning to George Stephanopoulos on ABC's Good Morning America. Here's the transcript of his remarks on the subject. The main news that he made was at the end of the interview is his saying that immigration reform is the most important matter of business for the House this year and that he hoped a bill would become law within the calendar year.

    STEPHANOPOULOS: Bottom line, what's the most important thing you'll get done this year?

    BOEHNER: I think-- immigration reform-- is probably at the top of that list.

    STEPHANOPOULOS: Signed into law?

    BOEHNER: I think by the end of the year, we could have a bill. Now, I don't know how much-- traffic-- that this-- will bear. This is a-- this is a big bill. And I'm tryin'-- people tryin' to do an awful lot of things. But I think-- we've got a serious problem with our legal immigration-- system. We clearly have a problem with illegal immigration. We got a problem with border security, and our ability to enforce the law today. So when you start to look at tryin' to address all of that, it's a big challenge.

    STEPHANOPOULOS: But one that passes the House, passes the Senate, signed by the president--

    BOEHNER: Yeah. No question.


    Boehner noted he has concerns about the Senate bill but would not get specific except to say that they relate to the border security provisions. He avoided taking a position on creating a pathway to citizenship, but also refused to say it would be a dealbreaker. Rather, he said this issue would be worked out on the House floor.  He did note, however, that he expected the House bill to be to the right of the Senate bill.


    Boehner didn't explicitly commit to sidestepping the Hastert rule of requiring a majority of Republicans to back a bill before he would let it come to a vote. But it sounded that way to me:

    STEPHANOPOULOS: But in the end, you're gonna have to make the big call. You're gonna have to make the call on whether or not to allow a vote on a bill-- that perhaps doesn't get a majority of Republicans. (COUGH) In the past, you have not been willing to do that. Are you willing to do it now?

    BOEHNER: George, I-- listen. I've allowed the House to work with-- t-- well, more than any speaker in modern history, to the point where there are some bills that have passed-- with a majority of Democrats-- in favor, and a minority of Republicans--

    STEPHANOPOULOS: And you're willing to do that with immigration.

    BOEHNER: --and I've been criticized for it. What I'm committed to is a fair and open process on the floor of the House-- so that all members-- have an opportunity.


    BOEHNER: It's not up-- it's not about what I want. It's about what the House wants. And my job is-- as speaker-- is to ensure that all members on both sides have a fair shot at their ideas--

    STEPHANOPOULOS: And if that means-- if that means putting on the floor a bill that will get more Democrats than Republicans, the majority of Democrats, not--

    BOEHNER: I-- I don't believe that will be the case.

    STEPHANOPOULOS: But you're open to it?

    BOEHNER: We're gonna let the House work its will.


    About The Author

    http://www.visalaw.com/gregpic2.jpg 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 gsiskind@visalaw.com.

    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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