On June 27, 2013, the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act of 2013 (S. 744) passed the Senate by a vote of 68 to 32. The bill, which was introduced in the Senate on April 17, 2013 by the Senate “Gang of Eight,” would allow a path to citizenship for the estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants in the United States and proposes significant changes to employment-based immigration laws. In the June 28, 2013 issue of the Immigration eAuthority, we briefly summarized the bill’s key provisions. You can view this synopsis here.
Although many believe that the current efforts at immigration reform have a greater chance at success than any past initiatives, the bill must overcome several legislative obstacles before it can become law, including gaining approval from the Republican-controlled U.S. House of Representatives. While several stand-alone bills have been introduced in the House, a bipartisan group from the House is considering its own comprehensive immigration reform legislation and has reached an “agreement in principle” on such legislation. However, the extent to which the House bill will resemble the Senate approach is, as yet, unclear.