There is new hope for the entire immigration system arising out of the Senate's Bipartisan Framework for Comprehensive Immigration Reform.
Unlike the proposed legislation that failed to pass in 2007, this new approach is based on creating economic growth, enhancing our nation's technology base, and freeing employers to hire the specialized skilled and highly educated employees that are needed for our country to remain competitive in a global economy.
The Senate's plan has four major legislative components:
- Create a tough but fair path to citizenship for unauthorized immigrants currently living in the United States that is contingent upon securing our borders and tracking whether legal immigrants have left the country when required;
- Reform our legal immigration system to better recognize the importance of characteristics that will help build the American economy and strengthen American families;
- Create an effective employment verification system that will prevent identity theft and end the hiring of future unauthorized workers; and,
- Establish an improved process for admitting future workers to serve our nation's workforce needs, while simultaneously protecting all workers.
As can be seen above, the new law will increase border enforcement, while creating a path for the 11 million undocumented foreign nationals living here. It will facilitate the recruitment of talented and highly educated workers, and shift further responsibility for employment verification unto the nation's employers.
It is significant that the eight Senators that comprise the support group represent the full spectrum of conservative and liberal viewpoints. There is outstanding leadership and wisdom coming from both the Republicans and the Democrats.
Can Congress work together to achieve this important result?
After the 2012 Presidential election, the nation will be watching Congress and the President to see if the promise for comprehensive immigration reform will finally be delivered.
If not, the make-up of the Congress may change significantly in the 2014 mid-term elections!