The Senate Judiciary Committee will begin to mark up The Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act next week.
Reid has said he wants to get the bill to the Senate floor for a vote by June. He spoke Wednesday to the March for Citizenship in Las Vegas, where he told the story of Blanca Gamez, an immigrant whose parents illegally brought her to the United States — also known as a DREAMer — when she was just seven months old.
“Washington owes Blanca permanent solutions — solutions that are tough but fair,” Reid said. “Solutions that fix our broken legal immigration system. Solutions that punish unscrupulous employers who exploit immigrants and drag down wages for every worker in America. Solutions that pull 11 million people out of the shadows, help them get right with the law and learn English. Solutions that put them on the path to citizenship.”
Some Republicans have complained that the legislation is being rushed through and that it would provide amnesty for illegal residents before strengthening border enforcement.
The House is expected to take on immigration reform as well, but leaders on that side have said they will pass smaller reforms one-by-one rather than a comprehensive bill. Members of the Gang of Eight have suggested that the only way to pass any immigration reform is through a large-scale, comprehensive bill.
“We can’t do this piecemeal,” Reid said. “And we can’t do it without a pathway to earned citizenship.”
Sens. Marco RubioMarco RubioRubio: Turkey attack 'directed' by ISIS Trump: Rivals who don't back me shouldn't be allowed to run for office GOP mega-donor: Trump would cause 'global depression' MORE (R-Fla.), John McCainJohn McCainBush World goes for Clinton, but will a former president? GOP senator: Trump could lose Arizona Senate panel passes bill that would create 4K visas for Afghans MORE (R-Ariz.), Lindsey GrahamLindsey GrahamOvernight Defense: US blames ISIS for Turkey attack | Afghan visas in spending bill | Army rolls up its sleeves Senate panel passes bill that would create 4K visas for Afghans Trump: Rivals who don't back me shouldn't be allowed to run for office MORE (R-S.C.), Jeff FlakeJeff FlakeGOP senator: Trump could lose Arizona McConnell quashes Senate effort on guns Bipartisan gun measure survives test vote MORE (R-Ariz.), Charles SchumerCharles SchumerFormer Gillibrand aide wins NY House primary Senate faces critical vote on Puerto Rico Juan Williams: GOP sounds the sirens over Trump MORE (D-N.Y.), Dick DurbinDick DurbinClinton ally stands between Sanders and chairmanship dream Reid backs House Puerto Rico bill McConnell pledges redo vote on Zika after break MORE (D-Ill.), Bob MenendezRobert MenendezOvernight Finance: Trump threatens NAFTA withdrawal | Senate poised for crucial Puerto Rico vote | Ryan calls for UK trade deal | Senate Dems block Zika funding deal Menendez rails against Puerto Rico bill for 4 hours on floor Overnight Cybersecurity: Senate narrowly rejects expanding FBI surveillance powers MORE (D-N.J.) and Michael BennetMichael BennetCruz-backed candidate wins GOP primary in Colorado Colorado GOP Senate race to unseat Dem incumbent is wide open Ted Cruz chooses sides in Colorado Senate primary MORE (D-Co.) comprise the Gang of Eight.