Immigration Reform Update

Published on    30 June 2014     Hits: 1123

The Senate passed a comprehensive immigration bill approved with bipartisan support in June 2014.  However, if there is no approval by the House of Representatives, the bill will expire on January 3, 2015.  There continues to be support from Democrat members to push forward comprehensive immigration reform in the United States. 

House Democrats have introduced a petition on March 26, 2014, to force a vote on the comprehensive immigration bill which passed the Senate is now currently stalled in the Republican controlled House.   Due to the House Republican refusal for comprehensive immigration reform, this petition will likely be unsuccessful.   There are murmurs that comprehensive immigration bill will get passed but must wait until after most state deadlines pass for candidates to file to challenge incumbent lawmakers in party primaries.  The reasoning behind the belief that comprehensive immigration reform will eventually occur is due to the fact that many in the Republican brass including Representative Paul Ryan agree with the sentiment that comprehensive immigration reform must occur.

Due to the continued headwind against comprehensive immigration reform in the House of Representatives, President Barack Obama has directed Homeland Security Secretary Johnson to review deportation policies with an eye towards a more humane approach to deportations.    However, there is worry that this executive action without Congressional support would jeopardize any chance that the comprehensive immigration bill from coming into fruition. 

National business group such as the Chamber of Commerce continue to lobby for comprehensive immigration reform in 2014.  In the beginning of the year, Chamber President Tom Donohue vowed to “pull out all the stops” to ensure immigration reform passed in 2014. In a letter to House Speaker John Boehner the Chamber of Commerce wrote that failing to pass immigration reform was “not an option.”

A reminder about the lack of a comprehensive immigration bill will come in the beginning of April which starts the annual rush for H-1B visas for the next fiscal year. The cap of 65,000 on the H-1B visas will probably be reached by April 7, according to U.S Citizenship and Immigration Services.  The aforementioned Senate bill would raise that cap to 115,000, and allow for as many as 180,000, depending on economic conditions.

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Copyright© Judy J. Chang, Esq. All rights reserved. (J Global Law Group. E-mail:;

Mario Guevara-Martinez