Senate Judiciary Committee advances immigration bill with path to citizenship

A10 immigration rallyThis week the Senate Judiciary Committee put America one step closer to a modern, common-sense immigration system by advancing S. 744 out of committee with bipartisan support on a vote of 13-5.

From the Washington Post: Senate panel approves sweeping immigration reform bill

In the words of committee chairman Sen. Patrick Leahy who led the Senate Judiciary Committee process:

“The dysfunction in our current immigration system affects all of us and it is long past time for reform. I hope that our history, our values, and our decency can inspire us finally to take action. We need an immigration system that lives up to American values and helps write the next great chapter in American history by reinvigorating our economy and enriching our communities.”

The Senate bill, which was designed after months of vigorous discussion and careful compromise, goes to the Senate floor containing a path to citizenship for aspiring Americans and many other provisions to create stability for families, communities, and businesses.

Throughout hearings, citizenship emerged as a consensus issue at the heart of modernizing our immigration laws. The Judiciary Committee rejected all major amendments designed to complicate the process to citizenship. It’s not a perfect bill – some of the border provisions are overly costly and excessive and some family members will not be able to be reunited under the bill – but it is a strong bill and we applaud the committee for their spirit of deliberation, collaboration, and bipartisanship.

Senators on the Judiciary Committee submitted about 300 amendments to the bill, of which more than 100 were approved. The vast majority of amendments that passed did so with bipartisan support. The bill is due to be debated on the floor of the Senate in mid-June.

This week is another historic step toward immigration laws with a clear and inclusive process for citizenship that will provide a strong foundation for Nebraska’s families, communities, businesses, and future.

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