In a letter to Senator Cornyn, Democratic co-sponsors of the Bill sum up the plight of the huge community stuck in green card backlog.
As the green card backlog community mostly from India, continues to urge a key opponent Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin of Illinois to withhold his block on S 386 or the Fairness for High Skilled Immigrants Act, 2019, its co-sponsors have asked for a hearing on Green Card Backlog Legislation.
However, Senator Mike Lee, the original sponsor of the bill, has rejected the call for hearing as in his view it would further delay the matters delay the process
In a succinct letter, written to Senator John Cornyn of Texas, Chairman of the State Judiciary Immigration Subcommittee, the Democratic co-sponsors of the Bill have summed up the plight of the huge community stuck in the green card backlog in the country.
Durbin, Ranking Member of the Senate Judiciary Immigration Subcommittee, who has been blocking the S.386 in the Congress also joined in requesting the Subcommittee on Border Security and Immigration, to hold a hearing on legislation to address green-card backlogs.
The letter was also signed among others by Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Chris Coons (D-DE), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Mazie Hirono (D-HI), Cory Booker (D-NJ), and Kamala Harris (D-CA).
“One of the most serious problems in our immigration system is that prospective immigrants are stuck in green-card backlogs for many years,” they wrote. “These backlogs harm our economy and are a hardship on families who are caught in immigration limbo.”
The Senators requested that the Subcommittee hold a hearing to receive testimony from experts and impacted communities on relevant pending legislation, including, S. 386, the Fairness for High-Skilled Immigrants Act; S. 2091, the Backlog Elimination, Legal Immigration, and Employment Visa Enhancement (BELIEVE) Act; and S. 2603, the Resolving Extended Limbo for Immigrant Employees and Families (RELIEF) Act.
However, Senator Lee told the Senate on Oct 31: “As I have said before, I do not believe that any further factual development about this bill is necessary. Indeed, at this point, I believe a hearing can serve no purpose other than to delay speedy action on this important reform, and jeopardize our ability to act before the end of the year.
“For that reason, I do not support Sen. Durbin’s calls for a public hearing. Every day that we delay action on this bill is another day the suffering experienced by immigrants stuck in the green card backlog continues and, indeed, intensifies. That is why I will continue to work to pass this bill at the earliest possible date.”
Senator Lee also said that he would be looking forward to working with senator Durbin on any issues that he may have with bill. He also expressed his desire for a future unanimous consent on S.386.
Meanwhile Senator Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut became the 35th co-sponsor of the bill and joined other senators in writing a letter to Senator Cornyn for a hearing on S. 386.
Blumenthal co-sponsoring the Bill was welcomed by scores of Indian green card hopefuls who also took to Twitter to thank him for understanding their plight.
Aiming to eliminate the per country cap for employment based immigrants as well as family sponsored immigrants S. 386 has been a hot topic discussion for reforming immigration laws in the US.