By: Uri-Biia Si-Asar
About a year ago on June 27th, 2013, the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act was voted upon by the Senate. The Senate voted 68-32 and the immigration reform bill was passed. Some of the key components of the Act included a 13-year path to citizenship for the 11 million unauthorized immigrants in the country and tougher security measures put in place before immigrants gained legal status. This includes a maximum of 200,000 guest visas annually and $40 billion put towards border enforcement measures for the next decade. Unfortunately, however, the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act did not pass in the House of Representatives and since then no more bills have been pushed through legislation.
Well at this point you may be wondering why that matters now almost a year later…
Recently there have been whisperings of another attempt at immigration reform in Congress. This is happening at a very interesting time as well because it may be one of the last windows of opportunity for any immigration reform to take place. Since the deadline to file for primary candidacy has passed Democrats are now hoping that some Republicans will now feel comfortable enough to vote for immigration reform.
Previously, some Republicans who were on the fence about their support of immigration reform may not have felt comfortable supporting the reform out of fear of losing their party’s support for elections. Now that the deadline has passed they have had time to gauge if their support on immigration reform will be reacted to negatively within their party.
We, as young people, are the generation of doers. We not only ask for change, we affect change. So, if you would like to voice your opinion or you would like to encourage Congress on making progress with immigration reform you should contact your representative in the Senate and House and let them know what you think should happen with immigration reform. We can make a difference.