‘Don’t Overreact or Overdo’, suggests forum after discussing next steps for passing S.386 with Dick Durbin, Mike Lee.
The Indian community in the US, currently stuck in a long line for green cards has been awaiting some news on the next steps for passing S.386 or the Fairness for High Skilled Immigrants Act of 2019 since the beginning of this year.
Before the Congress went for its winter break in December, the update was that Republican Senator Mike Lee, a key proponent of the bill and Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin, who has been blocking the bill, had reached a consensus on how to move the bill forward.
And while many have been calling their local senators to keep the momentum going for the bill, members of Immigration Forum, an Illinois based organization advocating a fair immigration system, spent the past week in Washington DC lobbying for S.386.
According to the forum officials, a delegation of the forum had meetings with Durbin and Lee and their staffs and received positive responses from both on the bill to end per country limits on green cards.
Durbin’s staff asserted in very clear terms that the Senator is committed to this bill, they said, noting that this was consistent with what Senator Durbin himself told them a couple of weeks ago.
A Facebook post shared by the forum read: “We had the privilege to meet with Honorable Senator Mike Lee who shared the current status and the next steps for the bill in detail.”
“His staff are working with Senator Durbin’s office. Senator Lee’s office shared with us, the changes that were later freely distributed by others on social media. Preferring to err on the side of caution, we practiced restraint,” it said.
ALSO READ: Sen. Mike Lee calls S.386 a good bill that needs to pass (February 21, 2020)
“We are also thankful to his senior staff for providing a clear direction forward,” the post added noting, “They made it clear in no uncertain terms to ‘NOT attack any Senator,’ It can jeopardize this bill. When you call, Don’t Overreact or Overdo!”
The Facebook post also addressed the reservations that some in the green card backlog community may have about the amendments proposed by Durbin in the bill.
As many in the past have gone on to call his amendment, the ‘poison pill,’ the post questioned: “If they (amendments) ever were poison pills, how did the bill progress further from December?”
The Immigration Forum also advocated for the changes made by Lee to ensure effective implementation, calling it a “good thing.”
The forum also advised the community to practice restraint in questioning and interacting with the senators and their offices, as any aggression may derail the process.
For the Indian community stuck in the green card backlog, the passage of S.386 may perhaps be their only hope to attain US citizenship within a reasonable time frame.
Currently, hundreds of thousands of Indians are in a line for permanent residency stretching into several decades or even a century before the applicants can get the coveted green card.