Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Top Republicans to Call for Legal Status for Some Immigrants

The New York Times

By Jonathan Weisman and Ashley Parker

The House Republican leadership’s broad framework for overhauling the nation’s immigration laws will call this week for a path to legal status — but not citizenship — for many of the 11 million adult immigrants who are in the country illegally, according to aides who have seen the party’s statement of principles. For immigrants brought to the United States illegally as young children, the Republicans would offer a path to citizenship.

But even before the document is unveiled later, some of the party’s leading strategists and conservative voices are urging that the immigration push be abandoned, or delayed until next year, to avoid an internal party rupture before the midterm elections.

“It’s one of the few things that could actually disrupt what looks like a strong Republican year,” said William Kristol, editor of the conservative magazine The Weekly Standard, calling an immigration push “a recipe for disaster.”

“Don’t Do It,” said the headline on a National Review editorial on Monday aimed at the House speaker, John A. Boehner of Ohio. “The last thing the party needs is a brutal intramural fight when it has been dealt a winning hand” — troubles with the president’s health care law — ahead of the elections, the editorial said.

To read the full article, please click:  Top Republicans to Call for Legal Status for Some Immigrants

For House Republicans, new momentum on immigration reform

The Washington Post

By David Nakamura

Recent signals from House Republican leaders that they will pursue their own vision of immigration reform have presented the White House with an opening to achieve a major legislative deal this year that has eluded lawmakers for decades.

Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) is expected to release a brief outline of immigration principles to his caucus as soon as its annual retreat next week. The goals would include strengthening border security and creating new visas for foreign workers, while providing a path toward legalizing the status of the nation’s 11 million to 12 million undocumented immigrants, according to people briefed on the deliberations.

Obama administration officials and congressional Democrats expressed optimism that new momentum in the House could yield results after months in which the issue languished in the lower chamber. But they cautioned that it is far too early to determine whether a compromise could be reached between the House and Senate, which approved a bipartisan plan to overhaul border-control laws last June.

“It’s a very big deal, and there’s a path here that could get it done,” Cecilia Munoz, the White House’s director of domestic policy, said of the potential for an immigration agreement.

To read the full article, please click:  For House Republicans, new momentum on immigration reform

2 Friends Reach Across the Aisle on Immigration

The New York Times

By Michael D. Shear

The two women might at first seem more like political rivals than a reminder of the way things used to work in Washington.

Esther Olavarria, a Democrat, left Cuba as a child, worked as Senator Edward M. Kennedy’s top immigration lawyer and now holds a post in the White House. Rebecca Tallent, a Republican, left suburban Arizona and became Senator John McCain’s chief of staff, briefly advised Sarah Palin in 2008 and is now a top policy aide to Speaker John A. Boehner of Ohio.

But if there is any way to unlock the immigration stalemate in Washington, colleagues say these two might find it.

A decade ago, the two women spent months in marathon back-room deal-making sessions as they repeatedly tried to bring lawmakers together on overhauls that would have given legal status to immigrants, secured the border and opened the country to more legal workers. In the process, they formed a friendship that transcended party affiliation.

“What they have is superior knowledge of the subject that exceeds any other staffers and any members,” said Mark Salter, a veteran of immigration battles who served as chief of staff to Mr. McCain. “That gives them an advantage.”

To read the full article, please click:  2 Friends Reach Across the Aisle on Immigration

Monday, January 20, 2014

Republican Ideas on Immigration Could Legalize Up to 6.5 Million, Study Says

The New York Times

By Julia Preston

Between 4.4 million and 6.5 million immigrants illegally in the United States could gain an eventual pathway to citizenship under proposals being discussed by Republicans in the House of Representatives, according to an estimate published Tuesday by the National Foundation for American Policy, a nonpartisan research group in Washington.

The estimate is based on policy ideas that have been put forward by Representative Robert W. Goodlatte of Virginia, a Republican who is chairman of the House Judiciary Committee. Mr. Goodlatte has said he would not support legislation with a “special” or direct pathway to citizenship for 11.5 million immigrants in the country without legal papers, such as the 13-year pathway in a broad bill the Senate passed last June.

House Republicans have rejected the sweeping approach of that bill and said they would handle immigration in smaller pieces. Speaker John A. Boehner of Ohio has said that Mr. Goodlatte is helping him to prepare principles that will guide House action on this issue this year.

To read the full article, please click:  Republican Ideas on Immigration Could Legalize Up to 6.5 Million, Study Says

Bob Goodlatte pushes immigration solution


By Seung Min Kim

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) says he sees “no reason” why current undocumented immigrants shouldn’t gain legal status as long as Congress enacts tougher border-security and enforcement measures.

In a Telemundo interview set to air Sunday, Goodlatte addressed the set of immigration principles that Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) said earlier Thursday is expected to be released in the “coming weeks.”

While not delving into specifics of the document, Goodlatte said the principles are meant to show the broader House Republican Conference how all the pieces of immigration reform would fit together and ultimately “galvanize” support among lawmakers.

To read the full article, please click:  Bob Goodlatte pushes immigration solution

House Republicans Preparing Plan for Immigration Overhaul

New York Times

By Ashley Parker

The House speaker, John A. Boehner, and his Republican leadership team are preparing to release their principles for an overhaul of the nation’s immigration laws later this month, the speaker told his members at a closed-door conference on Wednesday.

Though the “standards or principles document,” as Mr. Boehner of Ohio referred to the white paper in the meeting, has long been in the works, its imminent release reflects a broader push within the Republican conference to put forth its own proposals as a counterpoint to legislation in the Democratic-controlled Senate.

House Republicans hope to release their principles near the end of the month before President Obama’s State of the Union address, as well as before their annual retreat. Republican aides had previously said that their leadership team was unlikely to make any strategic decisions on immigration before the retreat.

In June, the Senate passed a broad overhaul of the nation’s immigration laws — including a path to citizenship for the 11 million immigrants already in the country illegally — with bipartisan support. But the legislation has faced more hurdles in the Republican-controlled House, where some lawmakers are opposed to any form of legalization, which they call amnesty. House Republicans instead prefer a piecemeal approach, with several smaller bills instead of one large one.

To read the full article, please click:  House Republicans Preparing Plan for Immigration Overhaul

Friday, January 10, 2014

February 2014 Visa Bulletin is Here

To see the complete U.S. Department of State Visa Bulletin for February 2014, please click:  February 2014 Visa Bulletin

Family-Based Immigrant Priority Dates

Family-SponsoredAll Charge -ability Areas Except Those ListedCHINA- mainland bornINDIAMEXICOPHILIPPINES

Employment-Based Immigrant Priority Dates

Employment- BasedAll Chargeability Areas Except Those ListedCHINA- mainland bornINDIAMEXICOPHILIPPINES
Other Workers

Boehner Is Said to Back Change on Immigration

The New York Times

By Michael D. Shear and Ashley Parker

Speaker John A. Boehner of Ohio has signaled he may embrace a series of limited changes to the nation’s immigration laws in the coming months, giving advocates for change new hope that 2014 might be the year that a bitterly divided Congress reaches a political compromise to overhaul the sprawling system.

Mr. Boehner has in recent weeks hired Rebecca Tallent, a longtime immigration adviser to Senator John McCain, the Arizona Republican who has long backed broad immigration changes. Advocates for an overhaul say the hiring, as well as angry comments by Mr. Boehner critical of Tea Party opposition to the recent budget deal in Congress, indicates that he is serious about revamping the immigration system despite deep reservations from conservative Republicans.

Aides to Mr. Boehner said this week that he was committed to what he calls “step by step” moves to revise immigration laws, which they have declined to specify.

But other House Republicans, who see an immigration overhaul as essential to wooing the Hispanic voters crucial to the party’s fortunes in the 2016 presidential election, said they could move on separate bills that would fast-track legalization for agricultural laborers, increase the number of visas for high-tech workers and provide an opportunity for young immigrants who came to the country illegally as children to become American citizens. 

To read the full article, please click:  Boehner Is Said to Back Change on Immigration 

Deportations of parents can cast the lives of U.S.-citizen kids into turmoil

The Washington Post

By:  Michael Alison Chandler

Twelve-year-old Jason Penate spent the holidays hanging close by his father. They picked out a Christmas tree and decorated the front window of their Gainesville, Va., home with candy canes, and Jason tried very hard not to think about whether his father would still be here in the new year.

Jorge Penate, a Guatemalan national who came to the United States illegally in 1997, has a hearing scheduled Monday that will determine whether he can stay in the country. A drunken driving arrest two years ago launched deportation proceedings and cast his family’s future into uncertainty.

Jason wrote a letter to the immigration judge, explaining that the three days his father was detained in 2011 “were the worst days of my life” and asking not to be separated from him again. “If he does have to leave I think every day of my life is going to be the worst,” Jason wrote.

More than 1 million illegal immigrants were deported in the past three years, a record number reflecting increased enforcement efforts under the Obama administration. The crackdown has spun the lives of hundreds of thousands of U.S. citizens — including children like Jason — into upheaval.

In fiscal 2012, an estimated 150,000 U.S.-citizen children had a parent deported, according to a study by Human Impact Partners, a health advocacy group.

To read the full article, please click:  Deportations of parents can cast the lives of U.S.-citizen kids into turmoil