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Greg Siskind on Immigration Law and Policy

Cornyn's Star Act Would Trade Lottery for More High Skilled Green Cards

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The green card lottery has come under fire from many immigration restrictionists for years, but pro-immigration advocates have held off the naysayers largely because proposals to eliminate the lottery haven't come with any sort of attractive trade. But Senator Jon Cornyn (R-TX), the chairman of the Senate Immigration Subcommittee thinks he has a deal that will appeal to enough members of Congress to cause the elimination of the lottery. The STAR Act would add an additional 55,000 green cards annually to science, technology, engineering and math graduates of "US research institutions" which broadly includes any colleges or universities receiving more than $5,000,000 in federal research grants. Students coming to pursue such degrees would be "dual intent" non-immigrants and could pursue green cards while in student status. Also, applicants could file adjustment of status applications for an extra fee even if no green card numbers available. They would have to wait on a green card number as is the case today, but could work legally while in the queue.


In general, I'm in favor of proposals like this. While there are cases where lottery entrants have important contributions to make, STEM degree holders have the stronger case and this proposal would do much for making the US more competitive.

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Comments

  1. sam's Avatar
    Immigration "talk" peak up during summer time. Then it dies down during year end. This is kind of common.
  2. Jack's Avatar
    Why would this not pass? Unless lottery critics think they can get rid of it with no trade?
  3. George Chell's Avatar
    Agreed! But, how is he going to get it past Charles Grassley and perhaps Dick Durbin? No one seems to be answering that question.
  4. JKL's Avatar
    We have seen similar bills earlier as well. This is all for the elections and any 2nd grader will know it. I am not wasting my time on this and moving on.
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