Immigration Provisions in Spending Bill Might Change

Immigration provisions could change under the House or Senate

Immigration provisions could change under the House or Senate

The US House of Representatives is currently reviewing the Democratic leaders’ spending bill and there are some resolutions that could undergo a number of prominent changes, such as, for example, the immigration provisions.

Democratic leaders included an immigration section in the budget package, stating that optimizing and improving the local immigration system is a budgetary issue as the presence of foreign workers is essential to the nation’s economic stability.

Therefore, among many other things, the Democratic leaders propose to:

  • Open a path to temporary legalization (up to 10 years) for eligible undocumented immigrants.
  • Recapture Green Cards unused for the past several decades.
  • Improve most existing immigration processes.
  • Expedite the adjudication of lawful immigration status to reduce the backlog of immigration cases across the US.

Adding to that, it is important to mention that, if the House of Representatives approves Biden’s spending bill, it will also face scrutiny and debate in the upper chamber of Congress, the Senate. As such, the immigration provisions in the budget package are still subject to possible changes along the way.

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Democratic leaders have already proposed several immigration plans

It is worth mentioning that the immigration provisions included in the budget package have already gone through several changes and are now much simpler than the Biden administration’s initial proposals.

In fact, over the past few months, Democratic leaders have proposed to:

  • Open a path to citizenship for approximately 11 million undocumented immigrants.
  • Expand the alternatives available to the most vulnerable immigrant communities such as asylum seekers and refugees.
  • Update the Registry Provision to provide lawful permanent residency to undocumented immigrants who have resided in the US for a specified period of time.

However, the Democratic leaders’ immigration proposals have faced a number of challenges, which is why the current proposals are less comprehensive.

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Senate Parliamentarian has rejected several immigration proposals

One of the biggest challenges for Democratic leaders has been the opinion of the Senate Parliamentarian, who has twice rejected the immigration language included in the spending bill, stating that it is not entirely a budgetary issue, but rather an immigration policy change.

As such, Democratic leaders have updated immigration provisions on multiple occasions and are likely to go through some changes again.

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