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October 04
House Democrats Introduce Comprehensive Immigration Bill

Although the continuing debate over government funding and the looming debt ceiling crisis have overshadowed discussions related to immigration reform, on October 2 House Democrats introduced comprehensive immigration reform legislation (H.R. 15) in an effort to counter the piecemeal approach of the House majority. The Democratic measure, whose chief sponsor is Rep. Joe Garcia (D-Fla.), is very similar to the version of the Senate’s comprehensive immigration bill (S. 744​) that passed the Senate Judiciary Committee in May, before compromise language was added to gain greater Republican support for the measure. It is unlikely that House leadership will support H.R. 15.

Despite the introduction of the Democrats’ comprehensive measure in the House, hopes for a bipartisan comprehensive bill passing out of the lower chamber have all but disappeared. The House “Gang of Eight” – a group of Representatives tasked with introducing such legislation – has dwindled to four members as a result of disagreements over policy and strategy. Nonetheless, work is reportedly continuing behind closed doors on the Hous​e leadership’s piecemeal approach. Majority leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) and House Judiciary Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) are reportedly working to create a new status to which undocumented immigrants would adjust, an issue that has yet to be addressed in the five bills introduced by House leadership.

Click here​ to view new NACo presentation on the immigration reform debate and its impact on counties. 

Contact: Marilina Sanz at or 202.942.4260 


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