Here’s what happened today in the Senate Judiciary Committee markup, from the Senate Judiciary Committee majority staff:
Day Five Recap: Committee Concludes Consideration of Immigration Reform Bill
The Senate Judiciary Committee today completed consideration of S.744, the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act. The immigration reform bill will make the first truly comprehensive reforms to the nation’s immigration system in a generation. The bill will strengthen border security and make billions of dollars in investments to protect the nation’s borders and ports of entry. The bill will make important strides in addressing the labor needs of American businesses, including the nation’s agricultural industries. Importantly, the bill provides reasonable reforms to support refugees and asylees, promotes family unification and reunification, and provides a hard-earned path to citizenship for millions of undocumented workers.
The Judiciary Committee has conducted an open and transparent markup of the bipartisan comprehensive immigration reform bill.
The Senate Judiciary Committee’s consideration of the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act has been the most transparent consideration of legislation in the Committee’s history. The text of the legislation has been available online for over one month, and the text of every amendment considered in Committee, including the sponsors’ amendment, have been made available online.
- The Committee has held five days of markups over the course of three weeks in consideration of the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act, encompassing nearly 30 hours of debate. Every minute of the Committee’s markup has been webcast live online, and played and replayed on CSPAN.
- Over 300 first-degree amendments were filed to the bill, all of which have been posted on the Committee’s website since May 8. The Committee considered a total of 212 amendments, including first-degrees, second-degrees, and substitute amendments. More than half of the amendments considered were offered by Republican members of the Committee. Every amendment considered by the Committee is publicly available on the Committee’s website.
- Of the 212 amendments considered by the Committee, 141 were adopted. Every member of the Committee who filed amendments to the legislation was afforded the opportunity to offer multiple amendments. Nearly every member of the Committee who offered an amendment had an amendment adopted.
- The Committee reported the legislation by a bipartisan vote of 13-5.
Amendments Adopted Tuesday
*NOTE: Summaries reflect purpose statements included in the proposed amendment.
Blumenthal15 – To shift the date of presence requirement for qualification for registered provisional immigrant status from December 31, 2011, to April 17, 2013 – Withdrawn
Sessions30 – To amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to clarify eligibility for the child tax credit – Vote: 8-10 (Not Agreed To)
Hirono20 (As Amended) – To require the Secretary of Homeland Security to collect certain information, which shall be kept confidential, from applicants for registered provisional immigrant status for the purpose of understanding immigration trends – Adopted by Voice Vote
Grassley17 – To limit judicial review of decisions on applications under section 245B, 245C, 245D, or 245F of the Immigration and Nationality Act or section 2211 – Vote: 6-12 (Not Agreed To)
Feinstein13 (As Amended) – To expand the scope of the grant program authorized under section 2106 to include assistance for applicants for blue card status – Adopted by Voice Vote
Cornyn4 (As Amended) – To protect the rights of crime victims – Adopted by Voice Vote
Cornyn5 – To preserve the ability of law enforcement to access critical national security and public safety information and to authorize the Secretary of State to share limited information with a foreign government, while protecting legitimate privacy interests – Vote: 9-9 (Not Agreed To)
Lee10 – To enhance the requirements on payment of taxes to be satisfied by applicants for registered provisional immigrant status – Not Adopted by Voice Vote
Lee8 – To prohibit aliens who have absconded or have attempted to reenter the United States after receiving a deportation order from receiving registered provisional immigrant status – Not Adopted by Voice Vote
Lee12 – To prohibit the use of sworn affidavits or other unspecified documents to verify the employment or education of registered provisional immigrants applying for permanent residence – Not Adopted by Voice Vote
Cruz3 (As Amended) – To provide that no person who has previously been willfully present in the United States while not in lawful status shall be eligible for United States citizenship – Vote: 5-13 (Not Agreed To)
Cruz2 – To provide that aliens who have entered or remained present in the United States while not in lawful status shall not be eligible for means-tested benefits – Vote: 6-12 (Not Agreed To)
Flake4 – To require the Secretary of Health and Human Services to conduct regular audits to ensure that registered provisional immigrants are not receiving Federal means-tested public benefits – Adopted by Voice Vote
Flake3 (As Amended) – To require registered provisional immigrants to undergo national security and law enforcement background checks before such status is renewed – Adopted by Voice Vote
Hatch10 (As Amended) – To modify the method for calculating annual H–1B visa limits – Adopted by Voice Vote
Whitehouse4 – To facilitate and admission and naturalization of aliens who are current or potential employees of certain Federal national security facilities – Adopted by Voice Vote
Grassley16 – To provide for the adjustment for inflation of all fees and penalties imposed in connection with immigrant visas – Not Adopted by Voice Vote
Franken9 – To permit battered immigrants to be eligible to receive certain public and assisted housing – Adopted by Voice Vote
Sessions2 – To impose a numerical limitation on the number of aliens that may be admitted as lawful permanent residents or receive adjustments of status to that of aliens lawfully admitted for permanent residence, to require the Secretary to issue employment authorization documents to all nonimmigrants authorized to work in the United States, and to impose a numerical limitation on the issuance of such documents – Withdrawn
Coons3 – To amend the Immigration and Nationality Act to provide for special immigrant status for certain spouses and children of employees of the United States Government abroad killed in the line of duty – Adopted by Voice Vote
Cornyn8 (As Amended) – To ensure that our immigration system encourages investment in communities which have made sacrifices for our men and women in uniform – Adopted by Voice Vote
Hirono1 – To exempt children of certain Filipino World War II veterans from the numerical limitations on immigrant visas – Adopted by Voice Vote
Cruz4 – To amend the provisions in the Immigration and Nationality Act relating to the numerical limitations for permanent residents – Vote: 6-12 (Not Agreed To)
Coons9 (As Amended) – To modify the requirements for cancellation of removal of an alien – Adopted by Voice Vote
Grassley19 (As Modified) – To provide for programs to ensure benefits integration – Adopted by Voice Vote
Hirono10 – To allocate a certain percentage of visas for family-sponsored immigrants to address separations that result in extreme hardship – Vote: 7-11 (Not Agreed To)
Sessions15 – To clarify the authority to refuse or revoke visas of the Secretary of Homeland Security and the Secretary of State – Not Adopted by Voice Vote
Hirono11 – To require the Comptroller General to conduct a study of the merit-based immigration system established under section 203(c) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, as amended by section 2301 of the bill – Adopted by Voice Vote
Klobuchar (As Amended) – To allow doctors more time to find employment in an underserved area – Adopted by Voice Vote
Leahy7 – To recognize, for purposes of the Immigration and Nationality Act, any marriage entered into in full compliance with the laws of the State or foreign country within which such marriage was performed – Withdrawn
Next Stop for Immigration Reform: Senate Floor Act
After five days of markup over the course of three weeks, the Committee has concluded consideration of the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act. Senate Majority Leader Reid has stated that he intends to schedule Senate Floor consideration of the comprehensive immigration reform bill during the June work period.