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AILA Doc. No. 21091005 | Dated September 20, 2021
On September 19, the Senate Parliamentarian issued a ruling that the budgetary impact of the immigration reform package proposed by Democrats, including the path to citizenship for undocumented populations, would be substantially outweighed by policy changes in the proposal. The ruling prevents the current package of immigration reforms from being included in the budget reconciliation bill. This news is a major disappointment since the budget reconciliation process would enable the Senate Democrats to pass immigration reform on a simple majority without Republican votes.
Our chances for winning reform this year are not over. Senate Democratic leaders have already indicated they will turn to alternative immigration proposals and will present those to the Parliamentarian in the upcoming days. Now more than ever, it is critical that AILA members and advocates keep the pressure on Congress to enact immigration reform as part of the budget reconciliation bill.
AILA continues to advocate for our top priorities be included in the bill, including a legalization program that provides a path to citizenship for the largest possible undocumented population. Beyond legalization, AILA has also worked to include provisions that recapture unused visas, prevent future loss of immigrant visas, and exempt certain immigrant visa applicants from the immigrant visa limitations. AILA has also pushed for provisions that would expand access to legal representation and needed Immigration Court reforms. Notably, AILA has also underscored for Congress the importance of opposing amendments that would exclude individuals from a pathway to citizenship, create barriers to accessing visa numbers, and undermine access to asylum or increase detention of migrants at the southern border. Senate leaders will continue to develop proposals consistent with the budget resolution passed by the House and Senate in August.
AILA will continue to monitor developments in this fast-moving process.
Momentum continues to build to enact immigration reform. AILA’s Greg Chen explains how the legislative process called budget reconciliation can lead to significant immigration reforms, where we are in the process, and what can AILA members and public do to make reform a reality.
Cite as AILA Doc. No. 21091005.
Now is the time for Congress to deliver a pathway to citizenship for people who are undocumented and relief for those waiting in long visa backlogs.Get Involved
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