National Immigration Forum

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The Week Ahead: May 20-24

May 20, 2013 - Posted by Communications Intern

“Filing a real bipartisan bill — a serious, enforceable commonsense bill — is, I think, a huge step. But it's the first step of the process.”
Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart (R-Florida), speaking about the agreement in principle on immigration reform among bipartisan negotiators in the House, May 16

Bipartisan Immigration Reform Bill May Clear Senate Committee This Week
The Senate Judiciary Committee is continuing its markup of the Border Security, Economic Opportunity and Immigration Modernization Act, S. 744, and the committee could pass the bipartisan bill later this week and send it on to the Senate floor.

Last week the committee considered Title IV, Reforms to Nonimmigrant Visa Programs, and started on Title III, which focuses on interior enforcement. Under way this evening is markup of Title II. This portion of the bill, simply titled “Immigrant Visas,” includes the essential roadmap to legalization and citizenship for aspiring Americans.

The “Gang of Eight” bill began as a bipartisan enterprise, and it likely will have bipartisan support as it moves out of the Judiciary Committee. Maintaining the spirit of bipartisanship and rational debate that has prevailed to this point will be key during a floor debate, likely in June.

Business Leaders Step Up Their Support in Washington and Online
In recent weeks, faith and law enforcement leaders from around the country have come to Washington to meet with congressional offices, hear from administration officials and show their unflagging support for broad immigration reform. This week, business leaders are making their voices heard.

Leaders in business and agriculture from around the country will be in Washington on Tuesday, holding meetings with congressional offices at a key moment. And on Wednesday and Thursday, business leaders and their allies will hold the “March for Innovation,” a virtual march for immigration reform.

Business leaders have the support of their allies in the Bibles, Badges and Business for Immigration Reform network. On Thursday, during the March for Innovation, evangelical leaders will show their support via an hourlong social media push on Twitter at 4 p.m. (hashtag: #iMarch).

CALENDAR:Please visit our Events page to find this week's immigration-related events.

Summary of immigration legislation introduced and government reports on immigration:

MUST READ: NEW YORK TIMES: Bipartisan House Group Reaches Preliminary Immigration Deal
By Ashley Parker
May 16, 2013
A bipartisan group in the House working on an overhaul of the nation’s immigration laws reached a deal in principle Thursday evening, aides said. The group plans to introduce its bill in June.
Details of the compromise were not released, but, much like a bill introduced in the Senate, the House legislation will include a path to legalization for the 11 million undocumented workers already in the country, as well as increased border security measures. The House version, though, is expected to be more conservative in its approach to granting illegal immigrants a path to citizenship, among a number of central issues.
It will most likely include a 15-year path to citizenship, rather than the 13-year path offered in the Senate proposal, as well as requiring illegal immigrants to sign an admission that they had violated United States immigration laws, aides said.
The House group had been meeting and working on a nearly parallel track with a similar bipartisan group in the Senate, which has already introduced legislation that is now before the Senate Judiciary Committee. But until Thursday, the House group had yet to reach an agreement, and earlier this week the Republican members had threatened to walk away and introduce legislation of their own if a compromise could not be reached.
The two-hour meeting Thursday evening, a last-ditch effort to save the legislation, finally produced the agreement in principle.
Read more:

HUFFINGTON POST: Immigration Reform Would Save U.S. $410 Billion over the Next Decade: Conservative Analysis
May 15, 2013
There are reasons beyond gut feelings or voter demographics for lawmakers to pass immigration reform. It could help the nation's economy, according to a new analysis.
If Congress passes the immigration reform bill introduced by the “Gang of Eight,” it would save $410 billion over the next 10 years, according to an analysis from Gordon Gray, the director of fiscal policy at the American Action Forum, a conservative think tank. The bill is currently being considered by a Senate committee.
The analysis is based on a report released earlier this month by the office of the Chief Actuary of the Social Security Administration, which found that immigration reform would help the country’s Social Security problem by adding millions of workers who would pay into the program’s trust fund. Gray based his calculations off the report's estimate that if immigration reform passed, GDP levels would be about 1.6 percent higher by 2024.
“It’s pretty straightforward arithmetic,” Gray told The Huffington Post.
Read more:

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