A new draft of a White House immigration proposal would clear the way for illegal immigrants to become legal permanent residents and potentially US citizens. Legal permanent residency could become a reality for those illegal immigrants within eight years.
A copy of the White House early draft proposal was obtained by the USA Today. Under the proposal, more security funding would be provided, and businesses would be required to check immigration status of new hires within four years.
Under the bill, illegal immigrants would have the option to apply for “Lawful Prospective Immigrant” visas.
The proposal also provides for some degree of provisional legal status for spouses and children living outside of the United States.
President Obama has never hidden his attempts to bring illegal immigrants into the fold, having fought for the DREAM act and other immigration practices since taking office. However, during his last election cycle, the Latin-American community continued to push President Obama for further control over the immigration issue.
Latinos chose President Obama over Mitt Romney with a margin of 71 percent to 27 percent during the November 6 election. Securing more rights for immigrants based on those numbers is an important factor for Democrats in future elections.
Another immigration bill is also being drafted by Congress.
Attacking the leaked White House bill draft, Republican senator Marco Rubio said it was “dead on arrival.” Rubio claims the new proposal simply rehashes failed immigration policies that would worsen the country’s immigration problem.
According to Rubio:
“If actually proposed, the president’s bill would be dead on arrival in Congress, leaving us with unsecured borders and a broken legal immigration system for years to come.”
The White House has not yet responded to the leaked bill in full.
Currently, there is an estimated 11 million immigrants in the United States.