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May 18, 2006

The Senate has been debating amendments to the immigration reform bill this week.  Some of the results of these votes are as follows:

  • Authorizing more than 350 miles of fencing and vehicle barriers along the U.S. – Mexico border.
  • Adopting a “prevailing wage” standard for determining wages that must be paid to guestworkers.
  • Prohibiting legalization of an undocumented person with a felony conviction or 3 or more misdemeanor convictions and those with prior orders of removal.
  • Heightening evidentiary requirements for proving periods of residence and employment.
  • Efforts to strike the guestworker program have thus far failed, as have efforts to block citizenship for long-term residents and permanent residence (green card status) for certain guestworkers.

More amendments will be debated in the coming days with the goal of a final vote by the end of the month.  Stay tuned.