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Greg Siskind on Immigration Law and Policy

ATTACK OF THE KILLER AMENDMENTS

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You're going to hear a lot of use of the term "killer amendment" this week to describe proposals to alter the immigration bill.  The Senate resumed debate on the immigration bill today after a break of a week and Senator Reid told his colleagues that he intends to push for a vote on Friday. No votes are being taken today, but tomorrow they start and there will be intense lobbying to determine which amendments are heard and how Senators vote on the ones that are selected. More than 100 amendments have so far been introduced and that will grow. Some considered less controversial may be incorporated in to a large Manager's Amendment voted on at the end of the week.



In the mean time, both the immigration restrictionists and the pro-immigration folks are promising that they will pull their support for the bill if certain amendments pass. On the pro- side, a key vote will be on the Cornyn Amendment to effectively bar people who reentered the US after removal and people who presented false documents from participating in legalization. Opponents argue that the legalization program would then only be open to a small percentage of the people here. On the other side, efforts to expand the family categories such as the Menendez-Dodd Amendment to more than double the number of parent green cards are being met with resistance from some of the "Grand Bargainers" whose support is needed to keep the bill moving. Those "Grand Bargainers" - six Democrats and six Republicans - are the ones twisting arms to keep the bill moving and their unanimous support seems critical.



I'll be reporting on the amendments that are being considered and will let you know my take as we get the votes.

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