Kamala Harris outlines sweeping immigration reform agenda

Kamala Harris
Kamala Harris; image via C-SPAN screen capture

Faster citizenship, automatic green cards for Dreamers on the anvil.

Vice President-elect Kamala Harris has outlined a sweeping immigration reform agenda of the incoming Biden-Harris administration including granting automatic green cards to Dreamers, or undocumented immigrants brought to the United States as children.

Other focus areas of President-elect Joe Biden and her team include decreasing wait times to obtain citizenship and adding immigration judges to decrease backlogs on court hearings, she told Univision Tuesday.

The immigration reform bill they plan to introduce would grant green cards immediately to immigrants protected by the Temporary Protected Status and Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) policies, she said as cited by Politico.

The administration would also try to decrease the amount of time required to acquire US citizenship to eight years from 13 years by making the naturalization process more efficient.

READ: ‘Biden can remake US immigration policy for the 21st century’ (December 11, 2020)

“It’s a smarter and much more humane way of approaching immigration,” the Indian American leader said of their legislative plans.

Harris said they also hoped to add more judges to relieve a backlog on immigration cases — a problem that President Donald Trump frequently used to justify stricter controls at the southern border.

Harris’ comments, Politico noted, came just before a group of undocumented activists from across the country plan to join with local faith leaders in Wilmington, Delaware, on Wednesday to demand a meeting with Biden.

They plan to pressure him “to make good on his campaign promises, and to act immediately when he takes office next week to protect families,” the advocates were quoted as saying.

READ: Biden promises pathway to citizenship for 11 million undocumented (November 25, 2020)

The immigrants, organized by the groups RAICES and Movimiento Cosecha, have not yet received a response to their requests for a meeting with the transition team, Politico reported.

During the meeting, they hope to push for Biden to go beyond his pledges for a temporary moratorium on deportations and the swift rollback of some Trump administration rules and executive orders, it said.

“Reversing Trump’s anti-immigrant policies is a beginning, but it cannot be the end of Biden’s immigration plan,” said Pastor Chelsea Spyres and the Rev. Edwin Estevez, who lead the Grace United Methodist Church and the Riverfront Church in Wilmington, as cited by Politico.

READ MORE:

Biden-Harris ticket vows to increase permanent, employment-based immigration (September 18, 2020)

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