Immigrants May Soon be Getting “Legal Status” for Citizenship

Legal Compliance Resource
January 29, 2014 — 1,201 views  

House Republicans are calling for legal status, not citizenship, for the 11 million illegal immigrants in the country. This, of course, refers to adult immigrants, but for young children who have been brought to the US illegally, there could be an option for citizenship.

The Republican document says the exception of citizenship will be made for the “Dreamers”, (children brought illegally) as cited by Representative Eric Cantor of Virginia, last year.

According to a recent poll, approximately two-thirds of Americans are for either a path to legal status for illegal immigrants or a scenario where they can stay without citizenship, but in a legal manner.

Fractured Views

However, even before the Republican plans are being un-ravelled, there are voices that don’t favour the new idea, because of cracks within the party ahead of mid-term elections.

Republicans haven’t enjoyed Latino support because of their immigration policies, and now seek to reverse that with a set of guidelines. Some voices claim that these new ideas won’t make much of a difference to the mid-term elections for the Republicans because many of their voting regions are not in favor of reform. And then, there are those who claim that the lack of reforms in immigration laws would definitely hurt the Republicans more going into the 2016 presidential elections.

Conservatives view any kind of legal status as “amnesty” for those breaking the law – the challenge for the Republicans is from these conservatives.

Case for Reform

The document that the Republicans have drafted has said that some of the best young students from across the globe come to the United States to be part of the college and university system, but have to go back to their own countries because they can’t get a green card. The statement also says that immigration laws that are present should be enforced before granting illegal immigrants legal status. Also, there is a stress on ensuring that the borders are made safe as part of the reforms process.

What do the Democrats Say?

When it comes to the Democrats, certain key leaders have welcomed this step by the Republicans, but a huge question would be whether they would accept any move that is not about granting full citizenship for illegal immigrants. In the past, President Obama has made it clear that any immigration law should include a way for both children and adult immigrants to obtain citizenship.

Republican Senator Rand Paul recently said immigration laws concerning reforms could be passed by the Congress speedily, only if the Democrats could meet Republicans “halfway” on principal issues.

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