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June 14, 2007

Congress Takes a Break from Immigration

Both chambers of Congress are taking a break from immigration this week as the Senate considers energy legislation and the House tackles appropriations bills.

In the Senate, Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) temporarily set aside the Secure Borders, Economy Opportunity, and Immigration Reform Act (Kennedy-Specter substitute to S. 1348) last Thursday, June 7, after the bill’s supporters failed to garner enough votes to end debate and proceed toward a vote on final passage. Despite this setback, the bill’s “grand bargainers” continue to work behind the scenes to craft a procedural agreement that could pave the way for a final round of debate and votes on CIR. If the bargainers succeed in striking a bipartisan deal, Senator Reid could bring the bill back to the floor after the Senate dispenses with energy legislation, sometime before the July 4 recess.

In the House, Representative Zoe Lofgren (D-CA), Chair of the Subcommittee on Immigration, Citizenship, Refugees, Border Security, and International Law, concluded last week a series of immigration hearings that spanned six weeks and touched upon nearly every important facet of immigration reform. Unlike the Senate, the House intends to move its own CIR legislation forward through the full committee process, beginning with a markup in the Immigration Subcommittee. However, House leaders have indicated that they intend to wait upon the deadlocked Senate and will postpone subcommittee markup hearings until the fate of S. 1348 is decided.

You can urge the House NOT to wait on the Senate – see Take Action for details at www.aila.org.

Posted by VisaLawyer at June 14, 2007 01:50 PM

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