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On Thursday, the U.S. Senate approved the milestone immigration reform bill that we have previously covered in several blog posts. Immigration has taken the helm as one of the major focuses of President’s Obama’s second term. The nearly 1,200 page bill plans to create a path of citizenship for millions of undocumented U.S. residents and to tighten border security with Mexico.
The Senate voted 68-32 in favor of the bill drafted by four Democrats and four Republicans, known as the “Gang of Eight”. While they had hoped to receive 70 votes for their bill, they believe that even 68 votes should provide a strong mandate for the House to act on the bill.
A total of fourteen Republicans voted in favor of the bill, joining a caucus of Democrats with Vice President Joe Biden acting as head of the Senate during the vote, using his constitutional right to do so.
Obama praised the Senate decision, calling it a “critical step” towards fixing what he believes is a broken immigration system.
Despite fourteen Republicans voting in favor of the bill, most conservatives still remain opposed to it. Obama has urged Americans to contact their House representatives and tell them to vote in favor of the bill.
The bill will now go on the Republican-controlled House of Representatives, who will act on it next month. We will keep you posted on the developments.
Author: Sean Foley Legal Trainee Bridgehouse Law Charlotte
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Reinhard von Hennigs