Immigration Reform Package Agreed Upon by Key Senators
A group of bipartisan leading senators are in agreement on sweeping legislation that will rewrite the immigration laws in the U.S. The deal will be announced on Monday afternoon at a news conference and covers guest workers, employer verification, a path to citizenship for those undocumented immigrants currently in the U.S. and border security.
There are still some details that could be difficult to iron out and approval of the package remains a big uncertainty, but the development of the legislation is an example of the biggest effort by Congress in years towards making a complete overhaul of the patchwork, inefficient current immigration laws.
The White House said President Obama was committed to an overhaul of the immigration laws through comprehensive legislation and on Tuesday will be in Nevada to lay out his idea. The plan by Obama is expected to have many overlaps with the current effort from the Senate.
The eight key senators who are expected to give the new proposal their endorsement include South Carolina’s Lindsey Graham, Arizona’s John McCain, Florida’s Marco Rubio and Arizona’s Jeff Flake all Republicans. For the Democrats New York’s Charles Schumer, Illinois’ Dick Durbin, New Jersey’s Robert Menendez and Colorado’s Michael Bennet.
A number of the eight lawmakers have worked years on immigration reform legislation. McCain and the late Senator Edward Kennedy a Democrat collaborated on immigration legislation in 2007 that was supported by George W. Bush, only to watch the legislation collapse on the Senate floor due to a lack of GOP support.
Some GOP members however have said this time around would be different since the party is reeling from the November elections and learned firsthand the importance of having the support of the Hispanic vote.