Day Four Recap: More Than 165 Amendments Considered To Immigration Bill

From The Senate Judiciary Committee Majority Staff
S. 744: The Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act
Day Four Recap: More Than 165 Amendments Considered to Immigration Bill

The Senate Judiciary Committee on Monday continued consideration of the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act.  The markup began at 10:00 a.m., and concluded around 8:30 p.m.
Through four days of markup, a total of 168 amendments were considered by the Committee.
Nearly half the amendments considered were offered by Republicans.
All amendments are available on the Senate Judiciary Committee’s website: http://www.judiciary.senate.gov/

The Committee will continue its markup on Tuesday, May 21, at 10:30 a.m., and will continue consideration of Title II. 

Protecting Refugees, Asylees, Trafficking Victims and Immigrant Workers from Abuse

The Committee Monday adopted amendments to protect immigrants, refugees and asylees seeking safe haven in the United States.  Specifically, the Committee adopted an amendment to bolster the ability of VAWA self-petitioners to receive temporary work authorization, allowing them to provide for themselves and their families while their applications are pending.  The Committee also adopted an amendment to protect elder immigrant victims of violence and abuse.  The Committee unanimously adopted an amendment to ensure that children are cared for when their parents or primary caregivers are detained on immigration-related matters, and to prevent the transfer of parents away from a point of detention until care arrangements are made.

The Committee also adopted amendments offered by Republicans to reduce fraud and abuse in the immigration system, including amendments to prevent the misuse of U.S. passports, and the use of a fraudulent immigration document.

Also on Monday, the Committee defeated amendments that would have eased the ability of law enforcement to use racial profiling, and that would have permitted the deportation of immigrants based on a standard of guilt by association rather than conduct.

Amendments Adopted Monday

*NOTE: Summaries reflect purpose statements included in the proposed amendment.

Leahy3 – To provide work authorization for aliens who are eligible for status as VAWA self-petitioners or for T or U visas while applications for such status or visas are pending - Adopted by Voice Vote

Grassley27 – To maintain the integrity of the asylum process – Withheld

Hatch7 – To terminate certain preferential treatment in immigration of Amerasians – Adopted by Voice Vote

Feinstein3 - To provide for the admission to the United States of certain Tibetans - Adopted by Voice Vote

Graham2 (As Amended) – To provide for information sharing for visa overstays - Adopted by Voice Vote

Klobuchar2 - To add elder abuse to the list of predicate crimes for U Visas - Adopted Voice Vote

Sessions31 - To amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to limit the earned income credit to citizens and legal permanent residents - Vote: 8-10 (Not Agreed To)

Franken8 (As Amended) - To provide for the transfer of responsibility for trafficking protections - Adopted by Voice Vote

Graham1 (As Amended) -  To provide for termination of asylum or refugee status in cases of country return - Adopted by Voice Vote

Coons5 -  To provide aliens in removal proceedings the right  to receive a complete copy of certain immigration documents  - Adopted by Voice Vote

Hatch6 (As Amended) – To require the Secretary of Transportation to establish a mandatory biometric exit data system at airports in the United States with the highest volume of international air travel - Vote: 13-5 (Agreed To)

Feinstein4 – To require background checks to be conducted on all refugees and asylees before they are granted such status - Adopted by Voice Vote

Coons8 - To ensure asylum applicants receive work authorization within 180 days of filing applications for asylum - Adopted by Voice Vote

Grassley52 - To prohibit sections 3401, 3404, and 4401(a), and the amendments made by such sections, from taking effect until 1 year after the Director of National Intelligence submits to Congress a review related of the Boston Marathon bombings - Not Adopted by Voice Vote

Grassley49 - To permit Federal law enforcement officers to take into account an individual’s country of origin to the extent permitted by the United States Constitution and the laws of the United States - Not Adopted by Voice Vote

Feinstein5 (As Amended) - To establish a pilot program to deter, detect, and prevent child trafficking - Adopted by Voice Vote

Grassley43 - To improve the provisions on the inadmissibility of aliens in criminal gangs - Vote: 8-10 (Not Agreed To)

Whitehouse5 - To increase public safety by permitting the Attorney General to deny the transfer of firearms or the issuance of firearms and explosives licenses to known or suspected dangerous terrorists - Withdrawn

Sessions7 (As Amended) – To provide sanctions for countries that delay or prevent repatriation of their citizens and nationals - Withdrawn

Franken7 - To protect children affected by immigration enforcement actions - Vote: 18-0 (Agreed To)

Lee16 (As Amended) - To preserve the criminal offense of knowing use of a fraudulent immigration document - Adopted by Voice Vote

Coons6 (As Amended) - To require Federal agencies with responsibility for detained aliens to maintain records on those aliens - Adopted by Voice Vote

Grassley45 - To improve the provisions relating to illegal entry, reentry of removed aliens, and passport fraud - Vote: 8-10 (Not Agreed To)

Blumenthal2 - To protect alien detainees from unnecessary or inhumane solitary confinement - Adopted by Voice Vote

Sessions10 (As Amended) - To require consideration of the receipt of certain public assistance for purposes of determining if an alien is a public charge - Adopted by Voice Vote

Lee17 - To make attempted misuse of a passport a criminal offense - Adopted by Voice Vote

Blumenthal3 (As Amended) - To ensure effective enforcement of protections against trafficking and abuse involving workers recruited abroad - Adopted by Voice Vote

Grassley47 - To strike section 3717 - Not Adopted by Voice Vote

Blumenthal4 - To revise the requirements relating to regulations on protections against trafficking and abuse in the recruitment of workers abroad - Adopted by Voice Vote

Sessions12 - To provide for the conditions for release on bond of aliens from noncontiguous countries - Vote: 9-9 (Not Agreed To)

Blumenthal5 (As Amended) - To improve the authorities relating to protections against trafficking and abuse involving workers recruited abroad – Adopted by Voice Vote

Hatch2 – To impose enhanced penalties for certain drug offenses that take place on Federal property - Adopted by Voice Vote

Blumenthal6 - To amend section 922 of title 18, United States Code, relating to the prohibition of the sale of firearms to, or the possession of firearms by, aliens not lawfully admitted for permanent residence - Withdrawn

Sessions32 (As Amended) – To improve the cooperation between the Federal Government and State and local law enforcement agencies in the enforcement of Federal immigration laws - Not Adopted by Voice Vote

Hirono22 (As Amended) – To provide for enhanced protections for vulnerable unaccompanied alien children and female detainees - Adopted by Voice Vote

Grassley44 (As Amended) – To amend the definition of aggravated felony to include 3 drunk driving convictions - Vote: 17-1 (Agreed To)

Blumenthal8 (As Amended) – To clarify the use of immigration enforcement authorities of the Department of Homeland Security at sensitive locations - Adopted by Voice Vote

Grassley27A - To eliminate the 1-year filing deadline for asylum applicants and to give the asylum office jurisdiction over all cases where the applicant has been found to have a credible fear of persecution - Vote: 6-12 (Not Agreed To)

Grassley27B – To remove a waiver in current law to allow RPI applicants to legalize despite previously filing frivolous asylum claims or failing to voluntarily depart the United States - Vote: 9-9 (Not Agreed To)

Coons10 (As Amended) - To provide that individuals authorized to be employed in the United States may not be denied professional, commercial, or business licenses on the basis of immigration status - Adopted by Voice Vote

Grassley11 - To limit the individuals who may apply for registered provisional immigrant status - Vote: 6-12 (Not Agreed To)

Blumenthal12 - To permit registered provisional immigrants who have honorably served in the Armed Forces and meet certain other conditions to become naturalized United States citizens - Adopted by Voice Vote

Graham3 (As Amended) - To require additional security screening for certain aliens - Adopted by Voice Vote

Hirono21 (As Amended) - To invest in highly motivated college students who came to the U.S. as children, grew up in our churches and schools, and want to contribute to America by earning a college degree, making more money and paying higher taxes, starting businesses, hiring American workers, and spending more to strengthen our economy - Adopted by Voice Vote

Sessions16 - To ensure that all applications for immigration status under the Act and amendments made by the Act are filed electronically, to clarify the national security and law enforcement clearances required for an alien to be granted registered provisional immigrant status, to require interviews of certain applicants for adjustment of status, to require a fraud detection and deterrence plan to be submitted to Congress, and to impose penalties for knowingly committing or aiding fraud - Vote: 6-12 (Not Agreed To)

Hirono16  -To remove barriers to health care and nutrition assistance for children, pregnant women, and lawfully present individuals – Withdrawn

Hirono17 - To add provisions relating to health care – Withdrawn

Cornyn3-(As Amended) - To ensure that serious criminals, including domestic abusers, child abusers, and drunk drivers, are not eligible for registered provisional immigrant status - Vote: 8-10 (Not Agreed To)

Hirono12 - To permit the entirety of the penalty payable in connection with application for registered provisional immigrant status to be paid in installments - Adopted by Voice Vote

Grassley18 - To require applicants for registered provisional immigrant status to disclose all Social Security numbers used to obtain employment in the United States - Vote: 8-10 (Not Agreed To)

Markup to Continue on Tuesday, May 21, at 10:30 a.m.

The Committee has concluded consideration of the Pre-Title, Title I, Title III; has begun consideration of Title II, and has made significant progress on Title IV.  Chairman Patrick Leahy announced today that the Committee will continue its consideration of the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act on Tuesday, May 21, at 10:30 a.m. with consideration of Title II.  The Committee is expected to continue the markup late into the evening on Tuesday.


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