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December 12, 2006

Washington Insider predicts CIR passage next year at 70%

San Antonio Express-News, December 9, 2006

Immigration bill's fate next year uncertain, by Hernán Rozemberg, Express-News Immigration Writer;

“A national immigration expert, speaking at a conference in San Antonio on Friday, said the long-simmering congressional effort to overhaul the current system will be revived next spring and legislation will have to pass by early fall or risk being derailed by the 2008 presidential campaign.

Demetrios Papademetriou, president of the Migration Policy Institute, a liberal-leaning think tank in Washington, spoke on the future of immigration policy to members of the National Conference of State Legislators meeting at the downtown Hyatt in San Antonio.

Papademetriou, who's often consulted by leading Washington politicians while working on immigration legislation, said he expected the U.S. Senate to introduce an immigration bill by the end of March or early April akin to the version the chamber approved last year.

The bipartisan legislation, which became known as the McCain-Kennedy bill, offered to reinforce border protections and called for a temporary worker program as well as an opportunity for illegal immigrants already in the country to work toward legalization.

Though Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., indicated he wouldn't want next year's bill to differ much from its original version, the offer for earned permanent residency likely will be streamlined, with migrants who have been in the country for a long time getting first dibs over recent arrivals, Papademetriou said.

After the bill is introduced in the Senate, the slack will be picked up on the House side by Reps. Luis Gutiérrez, D-Ill., and Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., who also presented the McCain-Kennedy proposal in their chamber last year, Papademetriou said.

He predicted events would unfold similarly to last year: relatively smooth passage in the Senate, while consensus will be harder to achieve in the House...”.


Posted by VisaLawyer at December 12, 2006 07:28 AM


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