Senators will release immigration plan

The Senate is set to release a proposal today that could offer millions of immigrants living illegally in the U.S. a chance to earn citizenship, according to The Washington Post. The proposal would represent the most ambitious overhaul of the U.S.'s immigration system in 30 years.

The purpose of the legislation, which marks the first comprehensive effort since a 2007 plan died in the Senate, is to largely solve the illegal immigration issue while clearing a backlog of millions of foreigners trying to enter the U.S. legally.

The proposal, which was created by an eight-member bipartisan group, also aims to prevent the flow of undocumented immigrants into the U.S. by creating tens of thousands of new visas for foreign workers in low-skilled jobs. Additionally, the government would invest billions of dollars in new border-control measures, including surveillance drones, security fencing and 3,500 additional federal agents charged with preventing illegal entry from Mexico.

The bipartisan group had planned to unveil the proposal during a high-profile news conference today; however, the news conference was canceled after yesterday's deadly bombings at the Boston Marathon.

Two members of the group—Sens. Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.) and John McCain (R-Ariz.) will meet with Obama today to discuss the immigration bill. The Senate Judiciary Committee has scheduled hearings Friday and Monday regarding the bill.

Those who oppose a deal regarding immigration reform have criticized portions of the plan and are expected to offer amendments that would upset the balance of the bipartisan agreement.

"This is legislation that rivals in effect the health-care legislation," says Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.), a leading critic of the reform effort. "It needs careful scrutiny. Having a hearing Friday and Monday when most members of the Senate aren't even here is proof that they desire no real public airing on the issues. That's very unacceptable."

Date : 4/16/2013