Wednesday, May 22, 2013
The struggle for Comprehensive Immigration Reform (CIR) took an important step forward this week when the Senate Judiciary committee approved the bill on a bi-partisan vote of 13 to 5. The bill will now go forward where it is expected to be approved by the full Senate early next month.
There is still much work to be done, however before the bill becomes law. Although the early vote shows that the bill has support from both political parties, a majority of Republicans on the committee voted against CIR by a vote of 5 to 3. This makes it clear that a majority of Republicans are likely to vote against the bill in the House of Representatives.
Since a large majority of Democrats will support the bill in the House, CIR does not need a majority of Republicans to succeed. In the past, however, the Republican leadership has refused to let a bill be voted on in the House unless a majority of Republicans agree to support it.
All of this means that continued pressure will need to be applied to the House leadership over the summer to allow CIR to come to vote. If every House member is allowed to vote as he or she chooses, the bill will become law.
Comprehensive Immigration Reform will provide legal status for 11 million undocumented immigrants, permit US employers greater freedom to hire foreign workers, assist asylum seekers, and require US employers to use E-verify when they hire future workers.
For a more complete review of the bill go to CIR proposal.