Wednesday, April 17, 2013

What's really in this immigration reform bill?

This week, the so-called 'Gang of Eight', the bipartisan group of Senators, unveiled their bill on comprehensive immigration reform. The bill is complex, with many compromises to satisfy divergent publics.


Many groups, including the Center for American Progress, are content with keeping the path to citizenship long as long as it is broad and includes the vast majority of undocumented immigrants.

Other groups such as the American Friends Service Committee criticize the long, costly, and contingent road undocumented residents will have to travel to qualify for a legal status. The bill seeks to move away from family-based migration and towards "skill-based" migration.
American Friends Immigrant Services Program Coordinator Herman Martinez

How can you understand the implications of such a bill?  

The Migration Policy Institute has a useful brief that compares side-by-side the 2006 and 2007 Senate legislation with the current bill.

What do you see as the strengths and weaknesses of the current bill?

My biggest problems with the bill include no immigration rights for same-sex couples; clauses to allow green cards for undocumented adults only take effect if border patrol goals are met (ie more money thrown at our border military); long pre-green card phase for Dreamers; large fines, and more. A nice surprise is that deportees with immediate family in the US would be able to return.

1 comment:

  1. I think it is also problematic that the DV lottery will be eliminated. About 50% of the "winners" came from various African countries. This in addition with the change in family reunification options (not to mention about the universal use of Western kinship ideas to determine who a "mother," "child," etc. are) will once again discriminate against Africans.

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