Defense Authorization, Immigration Amendments Postponed

On 7/18/07, after an unusual all-night session, Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) pulled the controversial Defense Authorization bill (H.R. 1585) from the Senate floor, postponing further consideration until after the August recess. With the Defense Authorization on hold, two positive immigration-related amendments to bill - the DREAM Act amendment (SA 2237) and the Habeas Corpus Restoration amendment (SA 2022) - also appear to be off the table until September.

Although the Senate will move on to other legislation in the interim, procedural rules and other constraints are expected to prevent these bills from serving as a vehicle for DREAM Act provisions or other similar amendments. Whether the Habeas Corpus Restoration amendment could be attached to an upcoming bill remains unclear. In the wake of the Senate's failure to move forward with comprehensive immigration reform, nearly any moving legislation could become a magnet for immigration-related riders, both positive and negative. At this point, however, it appears that the September appropriations seasons is likely to open up a greater number of opportunities for immigration advocates - and restrictionists as well - to advance immigration-related amendments.

Cite as AILA Doc. No. 07072365.