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Bloggings: New Bill Calling for 55,000 More STEM Visas, by: Danielle L. C. Beach-Oswald

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                      Stem


Today, New York Senator Charles Schumer (D) introduced a new bill before the
Senate.  This bill calls for an additional 55,000 STEM visas.  STEM visas are
for foreign-born individuals who have graduated from an American university
with at least a master's degree in a science, mathematics, technology, or
engineering filed.  Should this bill be passed, it would be a big step towards
reforming and improving our nation's immigration system. 


Schumer's bill is similar to a bill that was introduced in the House by Texas
Representative Lamar Smith (R).  However, Smith's bill calls for complete
elimination of the Diversity Visa Lottery, while Schumer's does not.  Smith's
reasoning for elimination the DV Lottery is that it is often plagued by fraud
and that it makes it easier for terrorists to enter the Untied States. 


In an attempt to rally support for his bill, Schumer's office is meeting with
large tech companies in the Washington DC area.  For years, tech companies
have desired an increase in the number of STEM visas, so it is not surprising
that they are highly supportive of this legislation.  Reportedly, House
Republicans are reaching out to tech companies as well to gather support for
Smith's bill. 


While both of these bills are intended to be very beneficial for highly
educated immigrants, it is doubtful whether they will prove to be so in reality. 
As we draw to a close of the 2nd Session of the 112th Congress, it is doubtful
that there will be enough time for the Congressmen to vote upon either of these
bills.  And although we remain hopeful, we cannot help but wonder whether these
pieces of legislation are just last minute strategic moves in the wake of the
upcoming election.


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