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Greg Siskind on Immigration Law and Policy

Surprise! Congress Passes an Immigration Bill

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S. 3245, a bill which extends for three years the Conrad 30 J-1 waiver program (helping rural communities and inner city hospitals recruit American-trained physicians with visas), the religious worker immigrant visa category, the EB-5 immigrant investor job creation visa and the E-Verify program, was passed by a voice vote in the House of Representatives yesterday. The bill has already passed in the Senate and the President is expected to sign it.

This modest measure is one of the only immigration bills - good or bad - that will move this year which really shows how dysfunctional the Congress is. I've been working on another bill (S. 1979) which would permanently reauthorize the Conrad program and make a number of improvements which will benefit American health care, so stay tuned on that. It's a bill that has bipartisan support, but this is a Congress where every member seemingly has enough individual power to kill legislation. Even relatively popular bills have trouble moving.

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  1. Legal and no longer waiting's Avatar
    Fincally, something.
  2. Paul Wilson's Avatar
    Way to go on approving the religious worker visa program without blinking an eye! We sure need some peace-loving imams, priests, witch-doctors, snake-oil salesmen and other con-men over here as well.
  3. eb2immigrant's Avatar
    Greg, I looked at the bill text, and it looks like the new EB1-D category is restricted to J1 Waiver physicians only. I am an H-1 physician, so I never needed a J1 waiver, but I have been working in an underserved area anyway... Shouldn't the bill benefit similarly situated physicians?
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