The U.S. Senate is nearing a deal on bipartisan immigration reform. The deal includes an amendment providing border security that hard-liners wanted – a doubling of border patrol agents, and hundreds of miles of fence along the border with Mexico.
Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) says it’s paid for with fee increases. “Anyone who comes into this county in a visa will pay more. Those who come in on a long-term visa, dramatically more – like H-1B visas. The 10 (million) or 11 million undocumented will be paying over the span of 13 years $2,000 a person to stay in the United States,” he said.
Durbin says that Sen. Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) is expected to be on board now. Kirk was one of 15 senators who voted last week against bring immigration reform to the Senate floor for debate.
The bill allows legal status for many illegal immigrants, and provides a path to citizenship for those who want it. Durbin hops that the bill gets enough support from both parties in the Senate that the House of Representatives will take it up. U.S. Rep. Peter Roskam (R-Wheaton) says the House probably will take up immigration issues one by one, rather than in one large bill.