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WaldenPond
06-01-2007, 12:40 PM
http://immigrationvoice.org/forum/showthread.php?t=3900&page=88

Please post all news articles in this thread.

WaldenPond
06-01-2007, 12:41 PM
This is the new thread for news articles pertaining to Immigration and Immigration related legislation, congressional action and regulatory actions. Please write to reporters of each of these stories requesting them coverage of our issues.
=======================
Sample letter to the reporter:
-------------------
Dear __________
Please allow to me express my dissatisfaction with the powers that be. My dissatisfaction is on a subject that is less likely to be familiar with most of your readers. It is not given the coverage in mainstream media it deserves.
It is the subject of legal immigration. That is not a typo. I do not want to talk about illegal immigration, the cause of so much controversy; but rather its less evil and more law-abiding twin.
On the one hand, I wish legal immigration would cause its own controversy. At least that would create some form of discussion and debate around it. It would force the eternally sacred tax payers to pay attention. It would force the more obsequious and attention seeking politicians something else to take a stand on. For at least as long as the soundbites last. Mostly, though, it would give me and my other green card applicants-in-arms something to hang a morsel of hope on. Instead of being relegated to the state of oblivion it is now.
Legal immigrants fall into various categories but they generally all follow the same course. We are allowed into the US on some kind of temporary visa (example, H1B work visa) and in time we apply for a change in status (i.e., a green card) that will allow us to stay in the country indefinitely and with far more freedoms than the temporary visa allowed. This green card application is reviewed, as it should be, to make sure that the applicant is worthy of permanent residency status. Does the applicant provide a valuable contribution to the country? Or would they be a burden to the US economy? Have they obeyed the law? Or are they a threat to national security?
The frustration sets in with the process that is set in place. The word ‘process’ implies movement. It suggests that your paperwork will progress through the various stages. The word ‘process’ puts a far too optimistic outlook on our plight. We need another word. What word could better describe this situation?
Stagnant. And circuitous. Heartbreakingly endless. Shrouded in mystery. Dispiriting to tens of thousands.
Who are these tens of thousands and why should your readers care about them? They range in age, ethnicity, background, and values. You can consider them a mini-melting pot within the already existing cauldron. All of them, however, have certain things in common with each other as well as with Americans.
Like all law-abiding Americans, they pay taxes. Like all hardworking Americans, they provide valuable contributions to American companies. And just like their American counterparts, they give the best of themselves each and everyday. They adapt to American culture by learning English - if they did not already have an excellent command of the language. They help fill the gap in engineering and science that American high schools and colleges cannot. A trend that is so worrisome to parents, teachers and politicians that there are several initiatives in place to get the US back on track. In the meantime, it is the legal immigrants that help American companies to remain competitive in the global economy. Did I mention that they pay taxes. They cannot vote, though. “No taxation without representation.” Wasn’t there an altercation based on this very premise a few years ago? I digress.
We were talking about the green card ‘process’. Applicants can wait up to 7 or 8 or more years before being granted a green card. In the meantime? They are limited as to who they can work for. If they change employers, this will require the process to start over again. They are limited as far as how far they can get promoted. If their promotion leads them to be categorized differently, it may mean that they have to start the process all over again. They are limited to where in the country they can work. A change in address can also be cause to restart the process. Generally, spouses of applicants are not allowed to work until green card is granted.
The picture that I hope I am painting is one in which lives are on hold. For years. Time is not the only sacrifice, though. There are lost career opportunities, lost earnings, indefinitely delayed life decisions. Patience gives way to frustration. And another year goes by. Colleagues continue to progress in their careers. Others change careers with, what my restricted perspective can only allow me to describe as, wild abandon. And then another year.
I cannot imagine any American putting up with this degree of mismanaged bureaucracy.
Various reasons lie behind this ineptness. And various solutions have been suggested. I will not bore you or your readers with the finer details. The only points that I want the reader to take away are the following:
- Legal immigrants provide vitally important contributions each and everyday to the bottom line of the American economy . And one very substantial contribution one every year on April 15th.
- We are not asking for handouts or an amnesty. We are only asking for our hard work to be recognized. Recognized and rewarded in the form of a timely green card in return for the years of hard work. Nothing in life is guaranteed. But the green card process should not be a careless gamble upon which we stake our life decisions on.
- The entire process needs to be thrust into the light and revamped to be more efficient so that immigrants who work hard, obey the law, and pay taxes are rewarded appropriately instead of being punished by endless wait times.
The picture that I do not want to paint is that of an ingrate. This is truly a great country to make a life in. It takes hardworking, honest, dedicated, smart, ambitious people to make it run.
Every legal immigrant I know fits the bill.

Thanks
_______________

pawnrule
06-01-2007, 01:00 PM
http://www.aila.org/content/default.aspx?docid=22481

logiclife
06-01-2007, 01:33 PM
Looking at Union issues and trying to analyze who is for what and against what -- can make your head spin.

I think that the debate is going to seriously intensify next week and in the House, the drama will go thru the roof.

Tarang
06-01-2007, 04:58 PM
http://www.usinpac.com/news_details.asp?News_ID=60

They already met Senator Conryn and Lofgren regarding CIR.

lost_in_migration
06-01-2007, 05:16 PM
http://www.competeamerica.org/news/alliance_pr/20070601_cantwell.html

Establishing Employer-Sponsored Merit Green Card System and Restoring H-1B Visa Provisions Viewed as Vital

Washington, D.C. – Compete America today urged the U.S. Senate to adopt the Cantwell / Cornyn amendment to S. 1348, the Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act, when debate renews next week. The amendment is a bipartisan measure proposed by Senators Cantwell (D-WA), Cornyn (R-TX), Bennett (R-UT), Leahy (D-VT) and Hatch (R-UT).

“We are asking the Senate to address key provisions in the immigration reform bill that U.S. employers deem critical to the innovation economy,” said Robert Hoffman, Vice President for Government and Public Affairs at Oracle and Co-Chair of Compete America. “The Cantwell / Cornyn amendment will establish an employer-sponsored merit system to complement the current Senate proposal, as well as restore key H-1B visa provisions passed by the Senate last year. We believe the amendment is entirely consistent with the bipartisan compromise underlying the current Senate bill, and the innovation agenda articulated by the Administration and leaders of both parties in the House and Senate. It should be approved.”

Among the key provisions of Cantwell / Cornyn endorsed by Compete America are the following:

Establishing an employer-sponsored merit system to complement the bill’s self-sponsored merit-based system.

* This complementary “employer-sponsored” green card pool would let companies determine the skill sets that are needed for a category of permanent residents. It would leave the merit-based system entirely intact – taking no numbers away from family or from workers at any skill level. The amendment is also designed to protect U.S. workers by applying labor market tests to employer sponsorship of foreign workers.

Restoring Critical H-1B Cap Exemptions

* The amendment would restore exemptions for foreign professionals with advanced degrees from U.S. universities as well as holders of advanced degrees in science, technology, engineering and mathematics from foreign universities. Both provisions were passed by the Senate last year.

* The current Senate bill would create a presumption that an H-1B visa or L visa applicant intends to stay and work in the United States permanently, and they would be refused the visa unless they can prove otherwise. This outdated and anticompetitive presumption was removed from the law years ago and the amendment would reverse the attempt to reinstitute it.

Restoring “degree equivalency”

* Because the current Senate bill requires a “degree in the specific specialty,” it would eliminate the possibility of qualifying for an H-1B with a degree that is related or through experience. The amendment would restore provisions for degree equivalency to provide for employer flexibility in filling critical talent needs.

Maintaining stronger H-1B visa enforcement

* The current Senate bill contains a host of provisions that would increase H-1B program enforcement, a welcome goal. However, the bill would treat every employer under the burdensome extra rules that currently apply only to “willful violators” and to employers with excessive numbers of H-1B employees. This amendment would eliminate that provision, while retaining the strengthened enforcement regime.

“This is a common-sense amendment that will appeal to any Senator concerned with keeping America competitive,” concluded Hoffman.

sanju
06-01-2007, 05:30 PM
http://www.usinpac.com/news_details.asp?News_ID=60

They already met Senator Conryn and Lofgren regarding CIR.

Let me tell you about this organization called USINPAC. These guys are very good in making a show about “doing something”. But in reality, these guys are good for absolutely nothing. They are only interested in taking pictures and putting on their website to show that they have proximity to power. Indian community gets impressed by the pictures and thinks that this organization is doing something. Reality is – they don’t even know what the issue is, they don’t care what the issue is, they don’t know what is in the bill and they don’t know what should be in the bill. All that they do is talk in broad strokes to impress people who see things from a distance. If anybody is depending on USINPAC to do something then it’s all doing to go to dogs and it would best to wind-up now.

As far as pictures with lawmakers are concerned, anybody can take pictures dime a dozen if you are willing to travel to DC. But guys at USINPAC try to put pictures on their website simply to show that they have proximity to power. It is better to have enemies than to have friends/self proclaimed community leaders like USINPAC. Atleast you won't depend on your enemies and know that they can attack you. Orgs like USINPAC disguise as your friends and use tools like deception to their advantage.

Look at this article: http://www.usinpac.com/news_details.asp?News_ID=60

Other than first paragraph, the remaining five (5) are simply advertisement about the “greatness” of this organization. These idiots have no clue about the issue. Call them and find out yourself, you will see that such “self proclaimed leaders” of “the community” are no better than poo poo.

GCBy3000
06-01-2007, 05:53 PM
http://article.nationalreview.com/?q=YTAxZWM2OGZmNDIxN2FlZWI4ZmNmYjdlNjI1MDY1Yzk=

http://nrd.nationalreview.com/article/?q=NTQyYzE4NzI2NTg3Y2E5ZTllNzk3NTlmZDZjNWRjMTg=

Illegal Detour
Thinking reasonably about immigration

RAMESH PONNURU

Illegal immigration is not a big problem in America. Okay, let me amend that before pots and pans and worse things come flying at me. America has some serious immigration problems, but they are not distinctively problems of illegal immigration. If we focus narrowly on illegal immigration, we are likely to come up with counterproductive solutions.

Almost all of the things that cause people to complain about illegal immigration are true of much legal immigration as well. If your worry is that illegal immigrants tend to raise government spending, for example, then you ought to be worried about legal immigrants, too. Half of legal immigrants have not gone past high school. Like illegal immigrants, they cost federal and state governments billions of dollars each year.

Or perhaps you’re concerned that illegal immigrants hurt low-income workers by driving low-end wages down. If so, you should be almost as concerned about legal immigration. Illegal immigrants tend to be paid less than legal immigrants, but the difference is small and largely reflects the fact that on average illegal immigrants have slightly less education than legal immigrants.
.........................

indianindian2006
06-01-2007, 08:39 PM
http://www.informationweek.com/research/showArticle.jhtml;jsessionid=G2LLXIZ0NLNACQSNDLPCK HSCJUNN2JVN?articleID=199800102

proposal to create a dual green-card system that favors high tech talent has bi-partisan support in the Senate.

By Marianne Kolbasuk McGee
InformationWeek
May 31, 2007 04:50 PM


A bi-partisan group of U.S. senators next week is expected to introduce to the immigration reform bill an amendment that proposes to retain a pool of 140,000 employer-sponsored green cards for foreign workers seeking permanent residence in the United States.
Amendment S.1249, being co-sponsored by senators Maria Cantwell (D-Wash), John Cornyn (R-Tex.), Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Orrin Hatch (R-Pa.), and Robert Bennett (R-Utah) proposes that the U.S. create a dual green-card system that, in addition to a new merit-point green card system that's proposed in the main bill, would also keep an annual pool of 140,000 employer-sponsored based green cards for foreign workers.

The revised legislation also proposes the United States establish no limit on H-1B visas for foreign professionals with masters or doctoral degrees in science, technology, engineering and math, or STEM fields.

"This would set up a complementary and parallel employer-sponsored system to the merit system" said Robert Hoffman, Oracle VP of government affairs and co-chair of Compete America, a coalition of technology companies. "This system would be more like Australia's" where immigration is granted in dual programs that includes employer-based sponsorship and merit points.

By the U.S. retaining a system allowing employer-based green cards to be issued each year, businesses would have better control over the talent they'd like to keep in the U.S., say tech employers.

One of the biggest criticisms that tech employers have about the current immigration reform bill being hammered out in the Senate is the proposed merit-based green card system. The process awards individuals with points based on the person's education, skills, and other factors.

Tech companies complain that a point-based system would shift to government bureaucrats too much control about the kind of talent pool that's available to employers in U.S. Amendment S.1249 proposes retaining employer-based immigration and expanding permanent residency to those foreigners with advanced STEM degrees, said Hoffman.

The amendment also proposes eliminating caps on H-1B visas issued to foreign students who have advanced degrees from U.S. universities. Right now, in addition to the 65,000 H-1B visas issued each year by the United States, an additional 20,000 H-1B visas are available to foreign students with advanced degrees from U.S. universities. The new amendment would eliminate that annual ceiling for advanced U.S. degrees.

In addition, the amendment also proposes providing 20,000 H-1B visas annually to foreigners with advanced degrees in STEM fields from foreign schools.

"Masters and PhDs would be exempt from the cap on H-1Bs and green cards," said Hoffman.

The amendment also proposes retracting a provision in the immigration reform bill that H-1B visa holders must have degrees that match their jobs. However, under the amendment, an H-1B visa holder with a degree in mathematics could continue to apply for work in a software engineering job, even without the software engineering degree.

"We're strongly in favor of this amendment," said Hoffman. "It's the single most important amendment in this [immigration] bill," he said.

Not everyone feels the same way. In a statement, U.S tech-professional advocacy group the Programmers Guild, called the amendment "a declaration of war on American tech workers

indianindian2006
06-01-2007, 08:42 PM
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070601/ap_on_go_pr_wh/bush_immigration
Please read the last paragraph of this article which sates as
And a bipartisan group wants to exempt hi-tech workers from a qualification point system — an idea that Chertoff suggested could put the measure in peril.

Here is the article
By JULIE HIRSCHFELD DAVIS, Associated Press Writer
33 minutes ago



WASHINGTON - President Bush challenged lawmakers on Friday to pass an immigration bill that would legalize millions of unlawful immigrants despite the harsh criticism they're hearing from voters and interest groups on both sides of the issue.

It was Bush's second personal plea in a week for support on the initiative — one of his top domestic priorities — part of a multi-front effort by his administration to bolster lawmakers in both parties as the Senate resumes a searing debate on immigration.

"No matter how difficult it may seem for some politically, I strongly believe it's in this nation's interest for people here in Washington to show courage and resolve and pass a comprehensive immigration reform," Bush told a group of activists, lobbyists and analysts who have pushed for an overhaul.

Lawmakers, at home during a weeklong recess, are hearing from conservatives who decry the measure as overly lenient and from liberals who are clamoring for its passage even as they complain it is filled with problems.

Bush acknowledged those gripes, but he added, "The question people have to answer is, are we going to sacrifice the good for the sake of the perfect?"

The president also took on those — mostly in his own party — who brand the bill as amnesty for lawbreakers.

"This bill isn't amnesty," Bush said. "For those who call it amnesty, they're just trying to, in my judgment, frighten people about the bill. This bill is one that says we recognize that you're here illegally and there's a consequence for it."

The legislation is the product of a bipartisan bargain that beefs up border security, mandates a verification system to prevent employers from hiring illegal immigrants and creates a new temporary worker system. It would institute a new point scheme for evaluating future would-be immigrants that prioritizes job qualifications over family ties.

With Bush set to travel to Europe Monday for the annual G-8 summit of industrialized nations, White House Spokesman Tony Snow is to take up the president's public-relations push in favor of the measure in appearances around the country next week.

Two Cabinet members who helped with the agreement, Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff and Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez, also are pressing hard for its passage.

After Bush's remarks Friday, they urged the immigration activists and lobbyists to support the measure despite their many objections, according to attendees.

"No one will get everything they want, but everyone will get something, and in the end, what we come up with is better for the country, and we all have to see it that way," Gutierrez later told reporters.

Chertoff said the measure "provides the most good outcome for the most people, recognizing that everyone's going to be somewhat disappointed."

Even the administration is not thrilled with the emerging bill. A 200,000-visa annual cap the Senate added to the temporary worker program — proposed by Democrats and approved overwhelmingly — would cramp what officials call a vital legal channel for foreign laborers to meet U.S. labor demands. The original measure would have allowed at least 400,000 workers a year to enter through the program, escalating to as many as 600,000 if the market demanded it.

"Two hundred thousand is not enough, and then we don't have this escalator clause that we believe we need," Gutierrez said.

The secretaries also warned against changes that could upset the delicate balance struck by liberal Democrats and conservative Republicans who reached the deal.

Democrats are planning attempts to make the measure more family-friendly by allowing more immigration based on blood ties to U.S. citizens or legal permanent residents. Republicans want to make the process whereby illegal immigrants can gain lawful status more onerous.

And a bipartisan group wants to exempt hi-tech workers from a qualification point system — an idea that Chertoff suggested could put the measure in peril.

"What I think would be very dangerous for the bill is for a particular special interest group to get a carve-out for its people," he said.

la_guy
06-01-2007, 10:11 PM
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Lobby_groups_push_for_US_UK_visa_schemes/articleshow/2093099.cms

NEW DELHI: In the past, the 'H factor' has largely driven the immigrant dreams of a large number of Indian techies. The H-1B visa that allows US companies and universities to employ skilled foreigners for speciality occupations and UK's highly skilled migrant programme (HSMP) scheme that allowed skilled and qualified foreigners to move to UK without jobs or sponsors, have been the twin tracks for techies to enter the US and the UK.

However, today, both these programmes are under a cloud and that's bad news for both Indian professionals and Indian companies. So even as the new US immigration bill gathers momentum, things seem to be getting tougher for H-1B visa holders, in whom US employers have invested heavily in training and talent management, in applying for green cards.

And the situation isn't much better for thousands of Indians who went to the UK under the HSMP. This follows UK's immigration minister Liam Byrne practically ruling out any softening of his government's stand on the retrospective application of HSMP changes announced in November 2006.

United States India Political Action Committee, an organisation representing over 50,000 members of the Indian-American community and businesses owners, has been proactively highlighting the problems faced by H-1B holders and urging US law makers to look into these issues through the new legislation.

"We are very concerned over the H-1B visa programme and the failure of the US authorities to address the need for hiking the quota from the current 65,000. It is getting a lot harder for H-1B visa holders to transit to green cards which is also a cause for worry. The H-1B visa holders are highly skilled individuals who gain further training in their jobs in the US.

However, the queue for green cards is only getting longer and there's no assurance to these talented individuals on whether they will get a green card or not after five to six years. Such ambiguities in the H-1B programme hits the US technology sector very hard," USINPAC chairman Sanjay Puri told ET.

The organisation has met the chairman of the House judiciary committee, Congressman John Conyers, and Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren, chairman of the House judiciary committee's subcommittee on immigration, citizenship and international law.

In the UK, the HSMP Forum, an organisation addressing the problems faced by foreigners who moved to the UK under HSMP and may now be forced to leave, is continuing its struggle to attain the removal of retrospective changes.

"Our forum will continue to strive to attain removal of the retrospective changes and we hope that UK's new prime minister and home secretary would look into the matter and the Indian government will continue to urge the British government to stop such unfair treatment of Indian HSMP holders," Amit Kapadia, director and co-ordinator of the HSMP Forum told ET.

pappu
06-01-2007, 11:23 PM
IV in the news

http://www.observer-reporter.com/OR/Story/05_31_Immigration_Fees__

Editor: Park Burroughs, pburroughs@observer-reporter.com
Managing Editor for Production: Maureen Stead, mstead@observer-reporter.com
Managing Editor for News: Liz Rogers, lrogers@observer-reporter.com

stuckinmuck
06-02-2007, 01:38 PM
http://www.qubetv.tv/videos/detail/836

Legal
06-03-2007, 10:55 AM
http://www.informationweek.com/news/showArticle.jhtml?articleID=199900342

Senators Mull A Dual Track For Green Card, And More H-1Bs
Compromise expected soon would keep employer sponsorship and merit points. It would also put no cap on visas for U.S.-educated recipients of advanced degrees.

By Marianne Kolbasuk McGee
InformationWeek
Jun 2, 2007 12:01 AM (From the June 4, 2007 issue)


As congress debates sweeping changes to U.S. immigration, a group of senators has prepared a plan to create two tracks for getting a green card: one through employer sponsorship, and another based on points awarded for skills and education.

The compromise amendment, expected to be introduced this week, also would dramatically raise the number of H-1B visas for temporary workers by eliminating caps for visas given to foreign students with advanced degrees from U.S. universities. Today, 20,000 H-1B visas are set aside each year for those grads, in addition to the 65,000 general cap. The compromise also proposes eliminating caps on H-1B visas for foreigners with advanced degrees in science, tech, engineering, and medical fields from foreign schools.




Hatch pitches a dual track

Photo by Sipa Press

The "merit point system" for green cards, which give foreign workers permanent U.S. residency, was included in a recently proposed immigration reform bill and would be one of the most dramatic changes in immigration policy. Employers oppose it because it would erode their influence in sponsoring would-be immigrants. The compromise would retain a pool of 140,000 employer-sponsored green cards for foreign workers seeking permanent residency, in addition to the point system.

The high-tech industry has a lot at stake in the immigration debate, given how much tech companies and outsourcers use green cards and H-1B visas. This most recent proposal comes from Maria Cantwell, D-Wash.; John Cornyn, R-Texas; Patrick Leahy, D-Vt.; Orrin Hatch, R-Utah; and Robert Bennett, R-Utah. President Bush is leading the campaign for broad immigration reform.

Robert Hoffman, Oracle's VP of government affairs and co-chair of Compete America, a coalition of technology companies, says the dual-track system would be more like Australia's. U.S. tech employers say that it would give them more control over the talent they'd like to keep in the country. They contend that a point-based system would shift to government bureaucrats too much control over the talent pool available to employers.

Employers will like the compromise bill, for both the green card provisions and the H-1B expansion. But the U.S tech-professional advocacy group the Program- mers Guild calls it "a declaration of war on American tech workers."

stuckinmuck
06-03-2007, 12:07 PM
As is, immigration bill a recipe for failure
By SEN. JOHN CORNYN
Special to the Star-Telegram

As Congress debates overhauling our broken immigration system, the bottom line should be this: Will the new system be enforceable and restore respect for our laws? Or will it be unenforceable and lead to even more illegality in the future?

This is not a minor matter. America is successful because it is a nation of laws. We now have a situation in which some laws are routinely ignored. If we approve yet another law that promises reform yet again fails to deliver on its promises, our precious heritage as a nation of law will be in serious jeopardy.

Our recent experience is not reassuring. In 1986, we approved an amnesty for an estimated 3 million people here illegally but promised that we would enforce the law in the future. That promise was never honored. Unsurprisingly, we now have at least 12 million here illegally, and more watching how we handle this situation.

Even after 9-11, our record of enforcement is sadly lacking. For example, in 2004, demanding better control of our border, Congress approved a Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative that requires a U.S. passport starting this spring for anyone visiting Canada, the Caribbean, Bermuda, Mexico and other parts of Latin America.

The State and Homeland Security departments had three full years to prepare for an easily foreseeable flood of new passport applications. However, we are seeing the results. Planning and staffing for the new law has been woefully inadequate.

Tens of thousands of U.S. citizens who applied for passports in January and February of this year, anticipating travel this summer, have not yet received their documents. The passport office is in near-chaos. All over the United States, people are turning to congressional offices seeking help.

Some critics are justifiably asking: If the federal government cannot even handle routine passport applications for U.S. citizens, how can it possibly do thorough background checks and issue visas for millions of foreign-born applicants?

An oversight report last year declared that the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services already is overworked and stretched to its breaking point. Under the immigration reform bill being debated, that USCIS work-load would be tripled -- without any significant increase in resources.

For example, the new bill gives the USCIS all of 24 hours to grant a probationary "Z" visa to any undocumented alien requesting it during the first year that the law is effective. If 12 million apply as expected, that means USCIS would have to process an average of 48,000 applications every day.

But the USCIS has only 3,000 staffers to process and review applications, including background checks. The current legislation would add only 100 new adjudicators each year for five years.

Clearly, the agency is being set up for failure. We are ensuring that the new system will not be workable. Law enforcement personnel assure me that there is no way a reliable background check could be conducted within 24 hours even if sufficient personnel were available.

Other aspects are equally troubling. The 1986 amnesty failed in part because of massive document fraud. The current Senate legislation, rather than learning from the 1986 experience, instead duplicates its errors.

Under the bill, the Department of Homeland Security is again prohibited from using all information from Z visa applications to weed out ineligible applicants.

It also forbids crucial information-sharing among law enforcement agencies. For example, if an applicant is denied a Z visa on noncriminal grounds, the bill does not allow DHS to use information supplied -- such as a home address -- to locate and deport the illegal entrant.

As I traveled throughout our state last week, I found Texans profoundly skeptical about this immigration bill. Their suspicion is justified. The federal government in recent years has proven that it is not serious about securing our borders and enforcing our laws. Passing yet another law that cannot be enforced will merely add to our broad disillusionment.

Last week, President Bush asserted in a speech that those of us who have raised questions about this bill "don't want to do what's right for America." I respectfully disagree. Working to secure our borders and restoring respect for our laws is exactly what is right for America. Repeating the mistakes of 1986 is not.

U.S. Sen. John Cornyn of Texas serves on the Armed Services, Judiciary and Budget committees.

americandream
06-03-2007, 07:37 PM
The Legal Visa Crunch


Editorial
The Wall Street Journal
May 30, 2007


The Senate immigration bill continues to take lumps from all political sides, with some criticisms more deserving than others. The vote last week to halve the size of a guest-worker program for low-skilled workers is a big step in the wrong direction; skimping on visas will only lead to more illicit border crossings. But the bill's handling of high-skilled immigration is even more troubling: The proposed changes are worse than current law.

Ostensibly, the goal here is to move immigration policy away from a system based on family connections and toward one based on skills. The Senate measure calls for a "merit" system that awards points to would-be immigrants based on their education and work experience. But employers who recruit foreign professionals -- and aren't too keen on Uncle Sam taking over those duties -- are balking at the proposal on grounds that it will introduce all sorts of inefficiencies to their hiring.

U.S. businesses aren't looking for skilled workers in general; they're looking for people with specific skills. And in the high-tech industry especially, where the demand for new products and services is constantly changing, employers need the flexibility to fill critical positions as quickly as possible. The last thing Hewlett-Packard or Texas Instruments need is uncertainty about whether the workers they want to hire will pass some bureaucratic point test. If the Senate wants the U.S. to keep attracting the world's best and brightest, this bill is an odd way of showing it.

Last month the supply of H-1B temporary visas for foreign professionals not only ran out in one day, but did so six months before the October start of the 2008 fiscal year. It's the fourth straight year that companies have exhausted the supply before the start of the year, which is a clear market signal that the cap should be raised, if not removed.

The Senate bill would increase the supply of H-1B's by 50,000 to 115,000 and put in place a market-based escalator that couldn't exceed 180,000. That's an improvement, but it will still leave too many firms in the lurch. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects growth of about 100,000 jobs per year in computer and math science occupations between 2004 and 2014.

Worse, the visa increase is combined with other provisions that seem designed to make employing foreign professionals both costly and cumbersome. Larger companies can probably live with the proposed increase in the fee for each H-1B visa hire (and renewal) to $5,000 from $1,500. But companies would also be forced to prove for the year surrounding the hiring of a foreigner -- six months before and six months after -- that a U.S. worker has not been displaced. This requirement is so burdensome that under current law it's used to punish companies that have been caught violating program rules. The Senate bill would needlessly apply it to everyone.

"The H-1B program is already costly, and all things being equal there's already a heavy incentive to hire Americans," says Robert Hoffman, Oracle's vice president of government and public affairs. "But there comes a point where the program is so costly that we have to decide if it's better to move this work offshore. And that's something that can't be in our overall national interests."

It's obvious that the immigration bill was written with the fate of 12 million illegal aliens foremost in mind. But we hope Congress is mindful that foreign professionals also fill important niches in the U.S. labor market that help keep American companies competitive and jobs stateside.

Immigration policies should acknowledge that the U.S. is not producing enough home-grown computer scientists, mathematicians and engineers to fill our labor needs. Last year, U.S. universities awarded more than half of their master's degrees and 71% of their Ph.D.s in electrical engineering to foreign nationals. It's foolhardy to educate these individuals and then effectively expel them so that they can put their human capital to work for U.S. competitors. There's no shortage of countries that would be thrilled to benefit from a U.S. brain drain.

The best way to keep that from happening is by raising the quotas for employment-based visas and green cards to realistic levels consistent with market demand, and by allowing U.S. firms to make their own decisions about which workers are best suited to fill their labor needs.

jkays94
06-04-2007, 04:13 AM
Backers of Immigration Bill More Optimistic
Lawmakers Cite Sense of Urgency (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/06/03/AR2007060301455.html?hpid%3Dtopnews&sub=AR)

By Jonathan Weisman (http://projects.washingtonpost.com/staff/email/jonathan+weisman/)
Washington Post Staff Writer
Monday, June 4, 2007; Page A01

After a week at home with their constituents, the Senate architects of a delicate immigration compromise are increasingly convinced that they will hold together this week to pass an overhaul of the nation's immigration laws, with momentum building behind one unifying theme: Today's immigration system is too broken to go unaddressed.

Congress's week-long Memorial Day recess was expected to leave the bill in tatters. But with a week of action set to begin today, the legislation's champions say they believe that the voices of opposition, especially from conservatives, represent a small segment of public opinion. Sen. Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.), who led negotiations on the bill for his party, said the flood of angry calls and protests that greeted the deal two weeks ago has since receded every day.

[...]

That dynamic is driven by certain realities: a two-year backlog of legal immigration applications, a workforce in the United States that is as much as 5 percent illegal, and a growing patchwork of conflicting state and local immigration ordinances that threaten to paralyze business.

[...]

source: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/06/03/AR2007060301455_2.html?hpid=topnews&sub=AR

starscream
06-04-2007, 10:58 AM
Two articles regarding push for Cantwell Amendment:

http://www.mercurynews.com/opinion/ci_6057046

http://www.nysun.com/article/55791

starscream
06-04-2007, 12:39 PM
Editorial: `Point system' for allocating green cards misses mark
Mercury News Editorial
Article Launched: 06/04/2007 06:44:20 AM PDT


In their attempt to craft a "grand compromise" on immigration reform, the negotiators who crafted the bill being debated in the U.S. Senate struck many delicate balances.

They would establish a pathway to legalization for undocumented immigrants but require them to wait a long time and pay stiff fines. They propose to allow temporary workers into the country but force them to leave every two years. They want to double the number of H-1B visas for skilled foreign workers but require employers to make more efforts to hire qualified Americans.

Although none of those provisions is perfect, they are worth sending to the House for further refinement.
Unfortunately, the bill's proposed "point system" for allocating permanent residency visas - commonly known as green cards - is fatally flawed. Senators should reject it. Instead, they should expand the total number of green cards for all categories of immigrants or craft some other more equitable allocation system.

Under existing law, most green-card applicants fall into two groups: family members of current U.S. residents and workers with advanced degrees, high skills or other extraordinary talents. Sponsorship - by family members or employers - counts for a lot, as does time waiting in line.

The existing system's biggest problem is the small number of visas handed out in both categories. Immigrants can wait a decade or more to get a visa.

The Senate could have taken the simple path of expanding
the number of green cards in both categories.
Instead, the negotiators started from scratch and created a complicated 100-point system of ranking that lumps everyone together and favors people with advanced education, even if they don't have a job, while virtually eliminating the significance of family ties. The law doesn't give officials discretion to admit brilliant people who don't meet traditional criteria, such as top athletes or brilliant technologists.

To top it all off, the bill reduces the total number of green cards handed out each year. Although extra visas would be handed out for a few years to clear current backlogs, it's obvious that a new backlog would be quickly created.

This Rube Goldberg mess serves no one - not technology companies who can't find enough U.S. engineers, not hospitals and nursing homes seeking to fill dire labor shortages, not longtime residents seeking to bring in their adult children, parents or siblings.

It would make the most sense to scrap the point system entirely and go back to some system of individual categories of immigrants.

But if that's not politically tenable in the Senate, lawmakers should adopt an amendment sponsored by Sens. Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., and John Cornyn, R-Texas, that would solve part of the problem. The provision, which is supported by the tech industry, would create an extra category of 140,000 employer-sponsored visas per year. It also would expand the number of H-1B visas for workers with advanced degrees.
With a similar adjustment to quotas for close relatives of current residents, the Senate could ensure that our future immigration system strengthens both the economy and families.

starscream
06-04-2007, 12:46 PM
Senators Mull A Dual Track For Green Card, And More H-1Bs
Compromise expected soon would keep employer sponsorship and merit points. It would also put no cap on visas for U.S.-educated recipients of advanced degrees.

By Marianne Kolbasuk McGee
InformationWeek
Jun 2, 2007 12:01 AM (From the June 4, 2007 issue)


As congress debates sweeping changes to U.S. immigration, a group of senators has prepared a plan to create two tracks for getting a green card: one through employer sponsorship, and another based on points awarded for skills and education.

The compromise amendment, expected to be introduced this week, also would dramatically raise the number of H-1B visas for temporary workers by eliminating caps for visas given to foreign students with advanced degrees from U.S. universities. Today, 20,000 H-1B visas are set aside each year for those grads, in addition to the 65,000 general cap. The compromise also proposes eliminating caps on H-1B visas for foreigners with advanced degrees in science, tech, engineering, and medical fields from foreign schools.


The "merit point system" for green cards, which give foreign workers permanent U.S. residency, was included in a recently proposed immigration reform bill and would be one of the most dramatic changes in immigration policy. Employers oppose it because it would erode their influence in sponsoring would-be immigrants. The compromise would retain a pool of 140,000 employer-sponsored green cards for foreign workers seeking permanent residency, in addition to the point system.
The high-tech industry has a lot at stake in the immigration debate, given how much tech companies and outsourcers use green cards and H-1B visas. This most recent proposal comes from Maria Cantwell, D-Wash.; John Cornyn, R-Texas; Patrick Leahy, D-Vt.; Orrin Hatch, R-Utah; and Robert Bennett, R-Utah. President Bush is leading the campaign for broad immigration reform.

Robert Hoffman, Oracle's VP of government affairs and co-chair of Compete America, a coalition of technology companies, says the dual-track system would be more like Australia's. U.S. tech employers say that it would give them more control over the talent they'd like to keep in the country. They contend that a point-based system would shift to government bureaucrats too much control over the talent pool available to employers.

Employers will like the compromise bill, for both the green card provisions and the H-1B expansion. But the U.S tech-professional advocacy group the Program- mers Guild calls it "a declaration of war on American tech workers."

starscream
06-04-2007, 01:16 PM
Please post article URL and reporter contact address so that everyone can request reporter for coverage of EB GC issues.

Thanks for posting articles.

The Information Week Article:
Title : Senators Mull A Dual Track For Green Card, And More H-1Bs
http://www.informationweek.com/news/showArticle.jhtml?articleID=199900342
Reporter: Marianne Kolbasuk McGee
Email: mmcgee@cmp.com


Mercury News Editorial
Title: Editorial: `Point system' for allocating green cards misses mark
http://www.mercurynews.com/opinion/ci_6057046
This is a editorial of the paper. No reporter info is given

starscream
06-04-2007, 01:25 PM
Another Article - mentions Cantwell Amendment & High Tech lobbying.

The Tribune News
URL: http://www.thenewstribune.com/news/government/story/77201.html
Reporter: LES BLUMENTHAL
Email: lblumenthal@mcclatchydc.com
Phone: 202-383-0008

Gravitation
06-04-2007, 01:37 PM
Do we know the name of this amendment or its supporters?

Senators Mull A Dual Track For Green Card, And More H-1Bs
Compromise expected soon would keep employer sponsorship and merit points. It would also put no cap on visas for U.S.-educated recipients of advanced degrees.

By Marianne Kolbasuk McGee
InformationWeek
Jun 2, 2007 12:01 AM (From the June 4, 2007 issue)


As congress debates sweeping changes to U.S. immigration, a group of senators has prepared a plan to create two tracks for getting a green card: one through employer sponsorship, and another based on points awarded for skills and education.

The compromise amendment, expected to be introduced this week, also would dramatically raise the number of H-1B visas for temporary workers by eliminating caps for visas given to foreign students with advanced degrees from U.S. universities. Today, 20,000 H-1B visas are set aside each year for those grads, in addition to the 65,000 general cap. The compromise also proposes eliminating caps on H-1B visas for foreigners with advanced degrees in science, tech, engineering, and medical fields from foreign schools.


The "merit point system" for green cards, which give foreign workers permanent U.S. residency, was included in a recently proposed immigration reform bill and would be one of the most dramatic changes in immigration policy. Employers oppose it because it would erode their influence in sponsoring would-be immigrants. The compromise would retain a pool of 140,000 employer-sponsored green cards for foreign workers seeking permanent residency, in addition to the point system.
The high-tech industry has a lot at stake in the immigration debate, given how much tech companies and outsourcers use green cards and H-1B visas. This most recent proposal comes from Maria Cantwell, D-Wash.; John Cornyn, R-Texas; Patrick Leahy, D-Vt.; Orrin Hatch, R-Utah; and Robert Bennett, R-Utah. President Bush is leading the campaign for broad immigration reform.

Robert Hoffman, Oracle's VP of government affairs and co-chair of Compete America, a coalition of technology companies, says the dual-track system would be more like Australia's. U.S. tech employers say that it would give them more control over the talent they'd like to keep in the country. They contend that a point-based system would shift to government bureaucrats too much control over the talent pool available to employers.

Employers will like the compromise bill, for both the green card provisions and the H-1B expansion. But the U.S tech-professional advocacy group the Program- mers Guild calls it "a declaration of war on American tech workers."

starscream
06-04-2007, 02:27 PM
Do we know the name of this amendment or its supporters?

Cantwell-Cornyn amendment : S. Amdt. 1249

From the Information week article of June 2nd By Marianne Kolbasuk McGee
"This most recent proposal comes from Maria Cantwell, D-Wash.; John Cornyn, R-Texas; Patrick Leahy, D-Vt.; Orrin Hatch, R-Utah; and Robert Bennett, R-Utah."

starscream
06-04-2007, 02:35 PM
There seems to be some support for S. Amdt. 1249 besides Competeamerica / IT Industry etc.

Post from National Association of Manufacturers:
URL:
http://blog.nam.org/archives/2007/06/more_on_immigra.php
Author: Carter Wood

June 4, 2007
More on Immigration
As noted in the summary of the week ahead (below), the Senate gets down to business pretty quickly this afternoon with floor consideration of S. 1348, the comprehensive immigration reform bill.

Some more detail: The NAM is sending a "Key Vote" letter to the Senate this morning supporting the Cantwell-Cornyn Amendment (S. Amdt. 1249 --You can find the text beginning at page S6198). From the letter:

Having an employer-driven system is crucial to a strong manufacturing economy. The Cantwell-Cornyn amendment retains employers’ flexibility in selecting the workers and determining the skill sets needed to remain competitive – without altering the bill’s self-sponsored merit-based system. The amendment also includes important provisions that were part of last year’s Senate passed immigration bill to expand exemptions for H-1B visas for key professionals.

The letter also expresses concern about the employer-verification provisions in Title III:Mandating that all employers and all employees use an electronic employment verification system that has not yet been proven to work properly poses considerable risk and cost to U.S. employers. The bill’s increased paperwork and civil and criminal penalties would serve as a disincentive to businesses considering job-creating investments in the United States. We believe Title III must be revised. We stand ready to work with you to create a system that is reliable, accurate and efficient – without severely disrupting the daily operations of American businesses.

Tagged: employer verification , immigration reform , S. 1348

Posted by Carter Wood at June 4, 2007 10:36 AM

uma001
06-04-2007, 02:38 PM
Article in yahoo

http://finance.yahoo.com/expert/article/futureinvest/34682


Diminished Influence of U.S. and Japan

During my trip I also felt that the U.S. economy was losing its importance to the region. The world economic engine is now strong enough to make it on its own without help from the U.S. consumer. The U.S. is still viewed by Asians as first in higher education and this year’s Wharton student body hails from more than 70 different countries.

But the big change from a decade ago is that these students are returning to their native countries after their education and not remaining in the U.S. There are two major reasons for this. The first, and most important, is the obvious growth of opportunities in their homelands. But another is the difficulty in obtaining working permits in the U.S. This is leading many to seek higher education elsewhere.

I wonder whether the U.S. can stay number one in this area in these circumstances. It may only be a matter of time before these developing countries develop world-class educational institutions of their own. If they do, becoming educated abroad will not have the same importance. The U.S. must continue to be a player in the world pool for top talent or we will suffer from a reverse brain drain that will deplete one of our most important advantages.

Although my trip did not take me to Japan, I felt that Asia’s richest country is also losing influence. On May 24th, the day I flew to Hong Kong, The International Herald Tribune featured a story titled “Japan losing Engineers, and perhaps its Edge,” and on the same day, The Asian Wall Street Journal wrote an article entitled, “Why Japan's stock market is unlikely to join global party.” The first article spoke of firms in developing countries raiding the top engineers from Japanese firms who felt suffocated by the corporate culture and the inability to capitalize from their own inventions. The second highlighted the low level of merger and acquisition activity in Japan compared to other countries. One of the reasons is that Japanese management puts up so many defenses that private capital does not find it worth the effort. All of this is a recipe for economic stagnation.

Conclusion

Perhaps the most important lesson to be learned from the Asian experience is that economic growth is not a zero sum game where the winners take jobs and opportunities away from the losers. The growth of China, India, and Indonesia is helping all the countries in Southeast Asia. Singapore gets more shoppers from neighboring countries and Hong Kong believes it will remain the financial capital for a burgeoning China since its open and transparent markets can attract more investors.

Similarly the U.S. has much to gain from the growth in Asia. Brand names are very important to the Asians and the consumer market in these developing countries is just opening up.

If we shut ourselves off from developments abroad, we will be the major ones to suffer. Opportunities abound in these developing markets. You can be sure that if the U.S. does not catch them, others most certainly will.

Email this Page IM this StoryBookmark this StoryAdd to your Del.icio.us accountDigg this StoryPrint this Story

Legal
06-04-2007, 04:39 PM
Gary Endelman points out the problems with the Cantwell- Cornyn amendment as it is. It looks like the amendment as it is needs some serious fixing. He also points out the serious flaws in the proposed points system.

http://www.ilw.com/articles/2007,0605-endelman.shtm

The counter-attack by American employers against the points system has begun; the Senate will vote next week whether to restore the employer-sponsored categories and have them operate at a level of 140,000 per annum along side their point system cousin. The political problem here is that this represents an overall increase in employment-based legal immigration , something that Senator Kennedy promised Senator Kyl would not happen if we had a points system. More than any other single amendment, Silicon Valley is pressing for Senate approval of the so-called High Skilled Immigration Amendment No. 1249 sponsored by Senators Cantwell (D-WA), Leahy (D-VT), Cornyn (R-TX) and Hatch (R-UT). For some reason, Cantwell-Cornyn does not contain a waiver to the labor certification based on national interest grounds, an invaluable mechanism that many American companies have used since October 1991.There may be no reason why the national interest waiver was left out but it does not seem to be there, at least to our eyes.

Beyond that, the amendment suffers from what can charitably be described as inexact drafting. The amendment's sponsors want to restore the exemption from immigrant intent in Section 214(b) of the Immigration and Nationality Act. To do this, it purports to strike down Section 418(c)(1) of S. 1348 which would be fine except there is no such section. What Cantwell- Cornyn doubtless meant to invalidate was Section 419 (c)(1) which does place the H/L back under the immigrant intent umbrella. Also, Cantwell-Cornyn wants to restore the value of equivalent work experience when an H1B applicant lacks a college degree. A noble goal and one worth doing, but repeal of Seciton 420(a) of S. 1348 won't get you there since it is section 420(b) that invalidates work equivalence. A third and final example is the stated desire not to require all US employers to comply with recruitment and non-displacement requirements until now only the bane of H1B dependent employers and willful violators. We like that but Cantwell-Cornyn's repeal of Section 420(a) in S. 1348 seems beside that point since it is Section 421(a) which imposes these draconian penalties. Oh, it might be worth saying that Cantwell-Cornyn also scales back S. 1348's explanation of post-completion optional practical training from the proposed 24 to the current 12 months.

:rolleyes:

stuckinmuck
06-04-2007, 06:09 PM
http://time-blog.com/real_clear_politics/2007/06/why_the_immigration_bill.html

Email reporter on EB GC issues: info@realclearpolitics.com

arnet
06-04-2007, 10:02 PM
http://www.ilw.com/articles/2007,0605-siskind.shtm

pappu
06-04-2007, 11:38 PM
http://www.ilw.com/articles/2007,0605-siskind.shtm
Please note: This and other reports quoted on this thread are not news stories. They are simply taken from the blogs of different lawyers who want to comment on events. They do not represent news report and sometimes are individual interpretations. Let us stick to news reports and contacts of reporters in this thread. No more ilw/immigration-law/HLG/murthy etc please on this thread. Thanks.

waitnwatch
06-05-2007, 03:02 AM
http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-immig5jun05,0,5547940.story?coll=la-home-center

Immigration bill sponsors hopeful but expect a fight
Reform backers express guarded confidence as Congress returns from recess.
By Nicole Gaouette, Times Staff Writer
5:06 PM PDT, June 4, 2007



WASHINGTON -- As senators returned to the Capitol on Monday after a weeklong recess, supporters of an immigration reform bill expressed guarded confidence it would pass despite raging conservative criticism.

They appeared buoyed by their success shepherding the bill through its first week of debate and by the sense that voters want them to solve the problem of illegal immigration -- even if those voters don't entirely approve of the solution they have chosen.

Even so, among the 12 senators behind the immigration bill, there is an acknowledgment that the week ahead will be a tough one.

"This is one of the most contentious, complex emotional issues of our time, and no one is going to get 100 percent of what they want," said Sen. Jon Kyl, R-Ariz., who spoke about constituents who told him they trust him but don't like his bill. "The situation in United States, and particularly in my state, is getting worse every day. You simply cannot afford to ignore the problem. You realize you're going to have to get in there, fight like heck to get the situation resolved."

A Democratic aide, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak for the senators, said they "felt pretty good coming out of the first week of debate, but there are going to be some tough votes. There's a sense of optimism tinged with nervousness."

Their unease stems in part from their belief that the greatest threats facing the bill this week will come from amendments offered by two former members of the group who now oppose the legislation. It is also rooted in their knowledge that both the bipartisan bill and the bond uniting the coalition that wrote it rest on a fragile foundation.

Republican and Democratic negotiators agreed to a trade-off, which they dubbed the "grand bargain," to give Democrats a way to give many of the estimated 12 million illegal immigrants legal status and to allow Republicans to shift the criteria for future immigration from family ties toward skills and education. If that trade-off is altered by any amendments this week, coalition members, who have taken to calling themselves the "grand bargainers," say the bill and their united support could fall apart.

The senators got a double-edged boost from President Bush last week when he said that those opposed to the bill "don't want to do what's right for America." That enraged some conservatives who have been coming down hard on Republican members of the coalition, such as Sens. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., and Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., both of whom reportedly were booed at Republican gatherings over the recess.

Right now, a Republican and a Democrat pose the most serious threats to the bill. Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, and Sen. Robert Menendez, D-N.J., both left negotiations over the bill, unhappy with the trade-off that pact members made to protect it.

Menendez's particular complaint is with the bill's limits on family-based immigration. The bill would allow citizens to bring only spouses and children under 18 to the United States. Currently, citizens also may bring parents and adult children.

The new restrictions are important to Republicans who are intent on ending what Kyl, the lead GOP negotiator, calls "chain migration." Menendez will bring a series of amendments that strike at that GOP achievement and, if passed, could lead Kyl and other Republicans to abandon the bill.

One amendment would change the deadline for reducing the backlog of family members waiting to enter the United States. The bill immediately would clear the backlog of 4 million family members who applied to enter the U.S. before May 2005. Menendez would shift the date to January 2007 -- the bill's cut off for illegal immigrants who could gain legal status -- increasing the number of family applicants allowed in by more than 800,000.

"These are over 800,000 people who played by the rules, didn't violate any law, did the right thing," Menendez said. "But all of those who did the right thing, they lose their chance under this bill because of an arbitrary date plucked out of the air. Let's think about how unfair that is."

Another Menendez amendment would increase the number of green cards, or legal permanent resident visas, available for parents of U.S. citizens and extend the duration of a new parent visitor visa, also a deal-killer for Republicans.

A third would amend the point system that Republicans have set up for awarding green cards, making it easier for applicants to earn points for family ties to the United States, along with points for education, skills and English ability.

Cornyn will target loopholes in the bill to ensure that illegal immigrants who are terrorists, sex offenders, drunk drivers and armed smugglers cannot become legal residents. But critics charge that his amendment is written so broadly that it would exclude huge numbers from the bill's legalization program.

The amendment would bar anyone from receiving legal status if they have been convicted of re-entering the country illegally or for using someone else's Social Security number -- a group that critics estimate could include half the workers now in the agricultural industry.

"What is the message we send about the rule of law in America when Congress won't even categorically prohibit rewarding those illegal immigrants who have ignored court orders?" Cornyn said in a statement.

The Democratic aide said the dozen coalition members remained unconvinced. "There's concern on the part of the grand bargainers that that could overwhelm the bill," he said.

starscream
06-05-2007, 09:45 AM
Article in Orange County Register - Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger worried about high tech workers

http://www.ocregister.com/ocregister/homepage/abox/article_1718843.php

Title: Governor worried about high-tech workers
Immigration bill's merit system concerns businesses, he says
Reporter: DENA BUNIS
Contact the writer: (202) 628-6381 or dbunis@ocregister.com

Text of Article:
WASHINGTON - Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger Monday lashed out against one of the basic pillars of the bipartisan immigration compromise – the proposed merit system for admitting new workers and family members to the United States.

"Replacing the current employer-based system, where companies can identify the specific skills needed and sponsor qualified immigrants, with an untested system run by the government threatens the very foundation of the program and must be amended,'' Schwarzenegger wrote in a letter to U.S. Senate leaders.

Schwarzenegger was referring to the H-1b visa. It is now common for employers to apply for a green card for these skilled foreign workers almost as soon as they come to work for them. So although the H-1b program is supposed to be temporary – three years with an option to renew for three years – in reality most H-1b workers easily get green cards.

Under the compromise bill, those skilled foreign workers would have to apply for a green card under the new merit system. They would likely be in good shape because their skills, level of education and presumed English proficiency would give them a large number of points. But there would be no guarantees that an employer could get a green card for a particular worker, as under the current system.

Sen. Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., plans to offer an amendment that would create a separate employer-based merit system that would make it easier for companies to get permanent status for specific high-skilled workers, particularly those with advanced degrees.

Any significant changes to the merit system would likely cripple the so-called grand bargain that brought together about a dozen Republican and Democratic senators behind the bill the Senate will continue to consider this week.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., has been a supporter of increasing the number of H-1b visas but she is also one of the lawmakers who have agreed not to promote anything that would destroy the fragile compromise.

"We're just getting the word out about the components of the bill,'' said Mitchell Wexler, a Newport Beach immigration lawyer. "Once I tell them that they are no longer driving the green card process they are very concerned.''

There are 14 amendments in the queue to be voted on in the next two days and aides to Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass., the manager of the bill on the Democratic side, estimated that there could be as many as 20 more changes suggested to the bill before leaders call for a vote on final passage as soon as the end of the week.

Lawmakers who crafted the bill will meet today as a group to discuss strategy on the amendments.

starscream
06-05-2007, 09:53 AM
http://thehill.com/leading-the-news/...007-06-05.html
By Jim Snyder

The main focus of the article is unrelated to EB issues but there is this para in it:
In a letter yesterday, a number of business groups, including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the Information Technology Industry Council, the Business Software Alliance and the Business Roundtable, urged support for an amendment authored by Sens. Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.) and John Cornyn (R-Texas). The amendment would increase employers’ ability to identify the foreign workers they want over the current structure of the “merit-based” system now in the bill.

The amendment will “preserve the ability of U.S. employers to determine the critical skill sets needed for global competitiveness and innovation and will make the proposed H-1B reforms more effective,” the letter stated.

abhijitrajan
06-05-2007, 09:17 PM
And Macaca, please slow down... :)

http://www.insideindianabusiness.com/newsitem.asp?ID=23718#middle

Press Release

Washington, D.C. -- U.S. Senator Evan Bayh (D-IN) today proposed legislation that would give American workers the first chance to fill U.S. job vacancies by requiring stronger federal efforts to root out immigrant hiring fraud and by mandating that employers post all job openings for skilled workers on a public job website before being allowed to request foreign worker visas.

“American jobs should go to qualified American workers first,” Senator Bayh said. “This legislation will ensure that U.S. jobseekers are given top priority to fill positions at American companies, while giving employers the latitude to apply for foreign work visas where a true labor shortage exists.”

Under current federal immigration law, employers can seek H-1B work visas for foreign workers only after making a good-faith effort to find a qualified American worker first. However, current requirements defining “good faith” are vague, allowing employers to take out advertisements in a local Sunday newspaper or a limited-circulation trade publication before bringing over foreign workers to fill American jobs.

The Bayh legislation would impose a legal requirement on employers to advertise their openings on a public job website prior to applying for an H-1B work visa.

“It’s ironic that H1-B visas are most often requested by software companies and engineering firms, yet no requirement exists for these companies to post their job vacancies on the Internet,” Bayh said. “Our college seniors are being denied job opportunities because there is no national job bank letting them know what opportunities exist around the country. My plan would address that problem.”

The Bayh legislation would also crack down on fraudulent employers gaming the H-1B visa system. Under current law, the U.S. Department of Labor does not check whether an employer identification number (EIN) is valid when that employer applies for a foreign work visa. Over a three-year period, the Department of Labor has certified more than 1,000 H-1B applications containing erroneous EINs, according to a Government Accountability Office study.

“The Department of Labor’s own Inspector General has described the certification process as a rubber stamp,” Senator Bayh said. “My plan would require quality assurance and quality control to make sure skilled foreign workers granted visas are being sponsored by legitimate U.S. firms. Our H-1B visa program is critical to maintaining America’s competitive edge in the global marketplace, but qualified U.S. workers who possess the desired skills deserve the first bite at the apple.”

Bayh’s proposal is expected to be considered this week as part of the Senate’s weeklong immigration debate.

Source: Office of U.S. Senator Evan Bayh

nk2
06-05-2007, 10:38 PM
http://thehill.com/leading-the-news/reid-move-places-bill-in-jeopardy-2007-06-06.html

Reid move places bill in jeopardy

By Elana Schor
June 06, 2007
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) yesterday set the stage for a vote to limit debate on the immigration bill, a move that risks destroying the fragile reform deal.

Reid told reporters that he plans to file for cloture on the immigration bill by today at the latest, frustrating Republicans who have blasted what they consider sluggish progress on their priority amendments. While the bipartisan team of immigration negotiators have won reprieves from Reid before, the Democratic leader was unruffled by the threat of GOP “grand bargainers” joining a filibuster.

“I was asked to give another week for negotiations. I gave them that [and more],” said Reid. “This is a bill that will never, ever make a majority of Republicans happy.”

But most Republicans lined up in opposition to a quick cloture vote, even as Reid insisted that germane amendments from both parties would be taken up during the remaining debate time.

Regardless of the outcome, Reid’s original goal of finishing immigration this week is likely to slip due to a pause in session for Sen. Craig Thomas’s (R-Wyo.) funeral.

“We’re a long way away from having as many Republican amendments considered as were considered last year,” Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said yesterday. “It is clear to me that the overwhelming majority of our conference would insist on having extra days.”

With a handful of contentious family-reunification amendments still unconsidered, and conservatives still unwilling to swallow a probationary visa program that they consider amnesty, Republican negotiators appeared to choose their party first.

A cloture filing this week “would be a real problem,” said Sen. Mel Martinez (R-Fla.), predicting that his side of the aisle would unite to filibuster the painstakingly crafted immigration bill if a cloture vote occurred this week.

“Frankly, it’s an extraordinary act of bad faith,” Sen. Jon Kyl (Ariz.), the GOP’s conference chairman, said. “[Reid] knows people have worked to get this bill in position for a bipartisan consensus.”

Reid took to the floor late yesterday to offer votes on 20 contentious amendments from both parties before debate is cut short, earning repeated objections from McConnell. The Kentuckian noted that all 20 were offered before recess and voiced complaints from Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) and others that Democrats have not allowed progress on many germane GOP amendments.

Sessions noted that Republicans have lamented Reid’s quick cloture filings on other bills for months.

“It’s maddening. It’s amazing,” said Sessions. “McConnell is getting a bellyful out of it.”

GOP aides questioned the wisdom of Reid’s pushing a cloture showdown that would pose as much political danger for Democrats as Republicans. Sen. Edward Kennedy’s (D-Mass.) next move is unclear, but Reid may not be moved even by the lead Democratic negotiator’s advice against cloture.

Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), who began as part of the immigration “grand bargain” but withdrew his support for the final deal, said he has not yet decided whether to support cloture.

At the same time, talk of a possible second bargain that could save the immigration deal emerged yesterday. Such a compromise would approve some Democratic family-related amendments and some amendments that Republicans crave. Kyl signaled that a plan from Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Texas), which would require current illegal immigrants to “touch back” to their home countries before earning probationary visas, might be part of that deal.

But relations frayed so quickly that by day’s end yesterday, Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) indicated he would object to taking up his own amendment on limiting legalization attempts without enough time to read the alternative plan offered by Kennedy.

Also looming is another amendment, sponsored by Cornyn and Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.), that could secure much-needed business support for the immigration deal, although Martinez said negotiators were unlikely to accept the duo’s skilled-worker visa plan as written. One element of that amendment — a provision that would give employers extra freedom to select individual immigrant workers for visa sponsorship — is more likely to pass muster, Martinez added.

Meanwhile, the GOP’s bitter internal rift over the immigration compromise shows no signs of abating. Hours before the Republican presidential debate yesterday, Rep. Tom Tancredo (R-Colo.) staged a press event in the parking lot of the Manchester, N.H., office of Sen. Judd Gregg (R) to promote the “no amnesty” pledge that Tancredo has begun circulating.

Gregg condemned the event in a statement.

“There are, unfortunately, people who wish to bury their heads in the sand by ignoring the threat our present dysfunctional system represents to our country, and who are using a jingoistic and demagogic approach of opposition to immigrants as a way to raise their own political visibility,” he said.


Manu Raju contributed to this report.

pappu
06-06-2007, 10:53 AM
Our media drive is working
http://immigrationvoice.org/index.php?option=com_weblinks&catid=19&Itemid=27

last week was slow on this front. pls keep up the pressure

vxg
06-06-2007, 12:56 PM
Senate Weighs Immigration-Bill Changes
By SARAH LUECK
June 6, 2007; Page A6

WASHINGTON -- Senate leaders, seeing their immigration overhaul under threat, considered allowing more family members to enter the U.S. and creating more hurdles for illegal immigrants seeking to stay.

Discussion of such changes, aimed at boosting support for the bipartisan bill, came as the Senate faced new pressure from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D., Nev.) to finish its debate. Mr. Reid set a vote for tomorrow on ending debate, prompting sharp criticism from Republicans. The vote could either doom the bill or speed behind-the-scenes efforts to solidify support for it. If the 60 votes necessary to end debate aren't cast, the Senate would move on to other issues, and the bill would be in jeopardy. Yesterday, Republicans and Democrats accused each other of trying to torpedo the legislation. (The issue was also a flashpoint in the Republican presidential candidates' debate.)

Today, the Senate is expected to vote on an amendment that bill supporters see as a deal-killer because it would greatly reduce the number of illegal immigrants who would be allowed to obtain legal status. Specifically, the proposal would expand the list of crimes barring an undocumented individual from seeking legal residency.

Democrats involved in crafting the bill said the amendment would prevent people who had stayed in the U.S. despite deportation orders from obtaining legal status. They were working on an alternative that would bar certain criminals, but not those who had ignored deportation orders, from legalization.

Yesterday, the Senate rejected a proposal to eliminate the ability of illegal immigrants seeking permanent residency to earn points toward that goal for work experience and home-ownership. Lawmakers, however, easily passed an amendment that requires employers to make an effort to recruit American workers before relying on temporary laborers who would be brought in under the bill.

Meanwhile, Democrats and immigrant-advocacy groups are pushing for changes that would allow thousands more relatives to join immigrants in the U.S. Such changes have been viewed by many Republicans, including Sen. Jon Kyl (R., Ariz.), a supporter of the bill, as contrary to the deal. Still, there is feeling in the Senate that a family-related change would help secure more Democratic votes.

Negotiators, including the White House, also discussed a change that would bolster Republican support by tightening requirements on illegal workers seeking to stay in the U.S. One idea centers on a proposal from Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R., Texas) that would require illegal immigrants who want to remain in the U.S. to temporarily return to their home countries even if they don't apply for permanent residency. Under the current legislation, illegal immigrants in the country before January 2007 who meet certain requirements would be allowed to stay and work legally without visiting their home countries if they didn't seek permanent residency. Tightening requirements on illegal immigrants "relieves a lot of the people who have worried about the amnesty part of the bill," Sen. Hutchison said.

Businesses, particularly high-tech companies, are pushing for a change that would create 140,000 employer-sponsored visas. The bipartisan proposal would give employers more power to choose specific workers, rather than hope the workers they want to retain would succeed in a new merit-based system. Mr. Kyl indicated concern with the amendment but said he would be open to certain changes in this area.

Write to Sarah Lueck at sarah.lueck@wsj.com

brij
06-06-2007, 01:00 PM
Testimony of Mr. Laszlo Bock, Vice President, People Operations, Google with House House committee. :

Source : http://www.competeamerica.org/news/alliance_pr/20070606_google.html



Iconic American Company Cited as Prime Example of Importance of H-1B Visa and Employment Based Green Card Programs

Washington, D.C. – Compete America cited testimony offered today by Google to the House Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on Immigration as clear evidence of the importance of highly educated foreign workers to the U.S. economy, and urged Congress to adopt measures that would allow U.S. companies to recruit and retain the world’s top talent.

In his testimony, Laszlo Bock, Vice President, People Operations, at Google offered examples of how foreign professionals have been instrumental in building the company into a great American success story.

* Orkut Buyukkokten was born in Konya, Turkey, and later received his Ph.D. in computer science from Stanford University. He joined Google as a software engineer in 2002 through the H-1B visa program. Orkut developed and programmed a new social networking service, which Google later launched publicly and dubbed "orkut." Today, orkut – the web service – has tens of millions of users worldwide. After spending four years in the U.S. on an H-1B visa, Orkut recently received his green card for permanent residency.

* Krishna Bharat joined Google even earlier, in 1999, and also through the H-1B program. A native of India, he received his Ph.D. from Georgia Tech in human computer interaction. His work on web search at DEC Systems Research Center and Google earned him several patents, and he is a noted authority on search engine technology. Krishna was one of the chief creators of Google News, our service that aggregates more than 4,500 English-language news websites around the world. Today, Krishna serves as Google's Principal Scientist, and he too has received his green card for permanent residency.

“Without Orkut and Krishna – and many, many other employees – Google would not be able to offer innovative and useful new products to our users. Immigration laws that enable us to attract and retain highly skilled workers, regardless of their country of origin, make that possible,” Bock stated.

Bock, himself an immigrant – as is Google co-founder Sergey Brin – emphasized that today, approximately eight percent of Google's employees in the United States are here on H-1B visas.

“These Googlers currently span 80 different countries of origin – from Argentina to Zambia. So, while nine out of ten of our employees are citizens or permanent residents, our need to find the specialized skills required to run our business successfully requires us to look at candidates from around the globe -- many of whom are already in the U.S. studying at one of our great universities,” he continued.

Bock also noted that Google has grown from almost 5,700 to over 12,200 employees since December 2004. Google currently has almost 800 open positions in the San Francisco Bay Area alone.

“Simply put, if U.S. employers are unable to hire those who are graduating from our universities, foreign competitors will. The U.S. scientific, engineering, and tech communities cannot hope to maintain their present position of international leadership if they are unable to hire and retain highly educated foreign talent. We also cannot hope to grow our economy and create more jobs if we are ceding leadership in innovation to other nations,” Bock concluded.

luckylavs
06-06-2007, 02:49 PM
NPR is discussing the point system and over all immigration system.http://www.npr.org.

starscream
06-06-2007, 04:44 PM
Competition for Workers Threatens Bill
By CHARLES BABINGTON, Associated Press Writer
11:32 AM PDT, June 6, 2007


WASHINGTON -- Waves of immigrants, scorned by many people, are so valued by U.S. business that the competition for them threatens the fragile immigration compromise in Congress.

With the government bent on tightening U.S. borders and workplace regulations, competing business interests are lobbying Congress to legalize the foreign-born workers they most need, even if it means hurting other sectors.

Industries that need highly skilled, well-educated workers are pitted against those that want lower-wage, minimally skilled employees. All of them are jealously eyeing the agriculture sector, whose powerful lobby secured a separate "AgJobs" bill likely to provide ample numbers of immigrant farm workers for decades to come.

"Other than the ag guys, who are taken care of, I don't think you could contact any constituency in the business community but they'd find a problem" with the Senate bill, said R. Bruce Josten, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce's top lobbyist.

The chamber supports the bill as the best available compromise, Josten said, but the infighting among various corporate interests underscores its precarious status. "It's divisive in the Republican base, it's divisive in the Democratic base, it's divisive in the business community. It splits organized labor, it splits the immigration community," Josten said.

The chamber and other broadly based trade groups have tried to keep their constituents in line. They say a flawed compromise is preferable to doing nothing to revise a system of leaky borders that has resulted in an estimated 12 million illegal immigrants living in the country.

Some key business sectors have balked. The National Association of Home Builders, whose members employ many thousands of immigrant workers, says the bill could endanger employers who unwittingly hire illegal immigrants and unfairly limit the number of permanent-resident green cards for low-skill workers needed by many construction crews.

"There is a huge prejudice against the kind of immigrants" typically hired by home builders, said Jerry Howard, the association's chief executive officer. His group refused to join fellow members of the Essential Worker Immigration Coalition in endorsing the measure.

Those backing the bill include trade groups for hotels, restaurants, landscapers and meat and poultry processors.

But even groups that officially support the bill are seeking changes that would help them at the expense of others, a competition that could cripple an already compromised measure that can take only so many hits.

That competition is all the keener because of last week's Senate vote to limit the number of temporary workers entering the country to 200,000 a year, rather than the 400,000 originally proposed.

In the U.S. hotel-motel industry alone, about 300,000 low-wage jobs come open each year, and many cannot be filled without foreign-born workers, said Steve Porter, the Americas president of the Intercontinental Hotels Group.

Porter's company and others will press the House to restore the 400,000 cap, he said. Lawmakers and lobbyists say that's the type of battle that could threaten the Senate-crafted compromise.

Moreover, many high-tech and low-tech employers want to amend the Senate bill's proposed point system for determining which immigrants qualify for green cards.

Comparatively low-skill industries say the new system would reduce their supply of immigrant workers by favoring foreign-born applicants with high skill levels and advanced degrees.

High-tech employers object because the plan would change an existing feature they like. Currently, they can sponsor individual workers for green cards, which can help them retain valued employees. The Senate bill would place the green card process largely under the government-run point system, giving employers much less control.

The bill's drafters were working to fend off a proposed amendment that would leave the existing green card process largely intact. They said the amendment by Sens. Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., and John Cornyn, R-Texas, could destroy the delicate coalition of Democrats and Republicans needed to pass the bill and send it to the House.
But the amendment has powerful backers. The National Association of Manufacturers said in a letter to senators this week: "The Cantwell-Cornyn amendment retains employers' flexibility in selecting the workers and determining the skill sets needed to remain competitive."

Sen. Lindsey O. Graham, R-S.C., one of the so-called Grand Bargainers who helped draft the bill, said he and his allies are seeking ways to make the proposed green-card changes "more employer friendly" without losing them altogether. Possibilities include allowing employers, as well as individuals, file green card petitions. Another would phase in the proposed changes over several years.
"I think most of us are willing to let people understand and phase in what is a dramatic shift in immigration if that gets us a bill," Graham said in an interview.

The business lobby already has flexed its muscle in changing some aspects of the legislation. An earlier draft would have penalized employers who knew that their subcontractors used illegal immigrants or who showed "reckless disregard" on the matter. The current version dropped the "reckless disregard" language.

"We got it back to a 'knowing' standard," Josten said. The Chamber of Commerce and other groups persuaded senators that the bill's stiffer penalties for hiring illegal immigrants were enough, and there was no need for a "double whammy" regarding subcontractors.

starscream
06-06-2007, 04:54 PM
See Senator Graham's comments in Green bold

http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/politics/wire/sns-ap-immigration-business,1,4462685.story?coll=sns-ap-politics-headlines

Competition for Workers Threatens Bill
By CHARLES BABINGTON, Associated Press Writer
11:32 AM PDT, June 6, 2007


WASHINGTON -- Waves of immigrants, scorned by many people, are so valued by U.S. business that the competition for them threatens the fragile immigration compromise in Congress.

With the government bent on tightening U.S. borders and workplace regulations, competing business interests are lobbying Congress to legalize the foreign-born workers they most need, even if it means hurting other sectors.

Industries that need highly skilled, well-educated workers are pitted against those that want lower-wage, minimally skilled employees. All of them are jealously eyeing the agriculture sector, whose powerful lobby secured a separate "AgJobs" bill likely to provide ample numbers of immigrant farm workers for decades to come.

"Other than the ag guys, who are taken care of, I don't think you could contact any constituency in the business community but they'd find a problem" with the Senate bill, said R. Bruce Josten, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce's top lobbyist.

The chamber supports the bill as the best available compromise, Josten said, but the infighting among various corporate interests underscores its precarious status. "It's divisive in the Republican base, it's divisive in the Democratic base, it's divisive in the business community. It splits organized labor, it splits the immigration community," Josten said.

The chamber and other broadly based trade groups have tried to keep their constituents in line. They say a flawed compromise is preferable to doing nothing to revise a system of leaky borders that has resulted in an estimated 12 million illegal immigrants living in the country.

Some key business sectors have balked. The National Association of Home Builders, whose members employ many thousands of immigrant workers, says the bill could endanger employers who unwittingly hire illegal immigrants and unfairly limit the number of permanent-resident green cards for low-skill workers needed by many construction crews.

"There is a huge prejudice against the kind of immigrants" typically hired by home builders, said Jerry Howard, the association's chief executive officer. His group refused to join fellow members of the Essential Worker Immigration Coalition in endorsing the measure.

Those backing the bill include trade groups for hotels, restaurants, landscapers and meat and poultry processors.

But even groups that officially support the bill are seeking changes that would help them at the expense of others, a competition that could cripple an already compromised measure that can take only so many hits.

That competition is all the keener because of last week's Senate vote to limit the number of temporary workers entering the country to 200,000 a year, rather than the 400,000 originally proposed.

In the U.S. hotel-motel industry alone, about 300,000 low-wage jobs come open each year, and many cannot be filled without foreign-born workers, said Steve Porter, the Americas president of the Intercontinental Hotels Group.

Porter's company and others will press the House to restore the 400,000 cap, he said. Lawmakers and lobbyists say that's the type of battle that could threaten the Senate-crafted compromise.

Moreover, many high-tech and low-tech employers want to amend the Senate bill's proposed point system for determining which immigrants qualify for green cards.

Comparatively low-skill industries say the new system would reduce their supply of immigrant workers by favoring foreign-born applicants with high skill levels and advanced degrees.

High-tech employers object because the plan would change an existing feature they like. Currently, they can sponsor individual workers for green cards, which can help them retain valued employees. The Senate bill would place the green card process largely under the government-run point system, giving employers much less control.

The bill's drafters were working to fend off a proposed amendment that would leave the existing green card process largely intact. They said the amendment by Sens. Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., and John Cornyn, R-Texas, could destroy the delicate coalition of Democrats and Republicans needed to pass the bill and send it to the House.
But the amendment has powerful backers. The National Association of Manufacturers said in a letter to senators this week: "The Cantwell-Cornyn amendment retains employers' flexibility in selecting the workers and determining the skill sets needed to remain competitive."

Sen. Lindsey O. Graham, R-S.C., one of the so-called Grand Bargainers who helped draft the bill, said he and his allies are seeking ways to make the proposed green-card changes "more employer friendly" without losing them altogether. Possibilities include allowing employers, as well as individuals, file green card petitions. Another would phase in the proposed changes over several years.

"I think most of us are willing to let people understand and phase in what is a dramatic shift in immigration if that gets us a bill," Graham said in an interview.

The business lobby already has flexed its muscle in changing some aspects of the legislation. An earlier draft would have penalized employers who knew that their subcontractors used illegal immigrants or who showed "reckless disregard" on the matter. The current version dropped the "reckless disregard" language.

"We got it back to a 'knowing' standard," Josten said. The Chamber of Commerce and other groups persuaded senators that the bill's stiffer penalties for hiring illegal immigrants were enough, and there was no need for a "double whammy" regarding subcontractors.

paskal
06-06-2007, 07:30 PM
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5376038

ssa
06-06-2007, 07:44 PM
http://www.mercurynews.com/ci_6072053

Chung: Green card cutback would hurt valley
By L.A. Chung
Mercury News Columnist
Article Launched: 06/06/2007 01:33:40 AM PDT

Srinivas Yerra sits outside the Starbucks at Westgate Shopping Center, explaining to me his options, as the Senate undertakes debate on the massive immigration bill. Buried in the nearly 400-page document may be his fate.

The current system, for him, is not working well. The provisions in the proposed bill, however, could mean that after nine years here, his green card application is for naught.

"Every week or month I wonder if I should just pack my bags and go," said Yerra, 31, a baby-faced software engineer from the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh, where information technology and biotech is starting to rise alongside the state's agricultural base. "The last six months have been like that."

Yerra is one of about 500,000 legal immigrants, many H-1B visa holders, mired in backlogs at various points of the three-part green card application process. Amid the heat of the immigration debate, a group of frustrated, highly educated workers are advocating on their own behalf. Many stand to lose if reform is not smartly crafted. So does American competitiveness.

Furloughing talent

From a group of seven in December 2005, Immigration Voice - a non-profit organization for high-skilled foreign workers - has grown to more than 12,000 across the country. They have been navigating the legislative and political minefield hoping to clear the backlogs and win some relief.

In Silicon Valley, they are primarily Indian and Chinese engineers, but they are also doctors, architects, financial professionals and former CEOs, said Pratik Dakwala, a local Immigration Voice leader and a San Jose business consultant.

Yerra is an applications software engineer, building the kind of software for data centers that nearly every company needs, from Barnes & Noble to eBay.

His work has taken him from Chicago to Boston to San Jose. But each time he moved, he had to start the green card application over again. The peculiarities of the process, involving one's employer, the U.S. Labor Department and the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service, mean H-1B visa holders must stay frozen in position for their application to stay alive.

They may not take a promotion or go to a new company without starting over. The wait can take up to eight years because of the backlog in green cards available to people who have met the requirements. Many are stuck in the Labor Department's optimistically named "Backlog Elimination Center." Spouses, like Yerra's doctor wife, cannot work until he has his green card.

Choosing America

The backlogs occur because green cards are capped at 140,000 annually for the employment-based visa category. The current proposal would cap it at 90,000, then simply disallow some backlogged applications like Yerra's. Immigration Voice hopes to stop this, and tweak the current law, to make the green card slots allocated by the country flexible and allow people to keep their applications in play, even with job changes.

"Unfortunately, America's immigration policies are driving away the world's best and brightest precisely when we need them most," Bill Gates told a Senate committee in March.

Yerra went job hunting in India in 2002, and concluded there were many things he could learn better here. Like others, he hopes to start a company in America - and leverage his bi-cultural, multi-lingual abilities to sell globally, perhaps to India.

Maybe Congress can take away Yerra's hopes for his green card - and all he may contribute to our economy. But it won't take away what he has learned. That's portable, all the way to India.

Is that really what we want?

oomshiva
06-06-2007, 09:31 PM
some important thing to read

http://lawfuel.com/show-release.asp?ID=12802

US Green Card Changes - New Employment Of Alien Rules Take Effect On July 16 - McGuireWoods

Posted on Wednesday, June 06, 2007
McGuire Woods LLP


LAWFUEL - The Law Firm Newswire - Effective July 16, 2007, there will be several major changes to the program of labor certification for the permanent employment of aliens in the United States, the first part of the process for most employer-sponsored permanent resident cases. Under the program, the Department of Labor certifies to the Secretaries of Homeland Security and State that there are not sufficient U.S. workers who are able, willing, qualified and available at the place of intended employment to undertake the offered position and that the employment of the foreign worker will not adversely affect the wages and working conditions of similarly employed U.S. workers. For most employment-based cases, the Department of Homeland Security may not approve an immigrant worker petition and the Department of State may not issue an immigrant visa without such certification. Since March 28, 2005, labor certification has been conducted by use of the PERM (Program Electronic Review Management) system, which allows for on-line application filing and approval.

Labor certification will change in the following ways:

All costs associated with obtaining labor certification must be borne by the employer, including attorney’s fees and costs and advertising fees. The employer cannot require payback from the alien at a later time and may not demand wage concessions, including deductions from wages, salaries or benefits. The alien may engage separate counsel and pay for that attorney’s fees. However, if an attorney represents both the alien and the employer, the attorney will be deemed to be the employer’s attorney and must be paid by the employer. The alien is not barred from paying for fees and costs associated with two later stages of the permanent residence process: the I-140 immigrant petition for an alien worker filed with U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS), a part of the Department of Homeland Security, and the final stage of an I-485 adjustment of status filed with USCIS or an immigrant visa application filed with a State Department consular post abroad.

An approved permanent labor certification will only be valid for 180 days during which time an I-140 petition must be filed. Any labor certifications approved prior to July 16, 2007, will expire on January 11, 2008 unless filed in support of an I-140 petition before that date.

The practice of allowing substitutions of alien beneficiaries on permanent labor certification applications or resulting certifications will cease. In other words, the certification will only be valid for the individual named as a beneficiary on the application. USCIS will continue to accept and adjudicate I-140 petitions that request a labor certification substitution if they are filed prior to July 16, 2007. USCIS will not allow such petitions to be included in its premium processing program under which a petitioner may pay $1,000 in order to have the case adjudicated within 15 calendar days.

Neither an application for permanent labor certification nor an approved labor certification may be sold, bartered or purchased. This prohibition covers the transfer of ownership of any labor certification application or certification for the payment or promise of payment of money or any other valuable consideration.

Any attorney, agent or employer who is found to have committed fraud or willful misrepresentation involving the permanent labor certification program or has engaged in a pattern or practice of failing to comply with program requirements may be debarred for up to three years. Debarment means that an individual or entity may not participate in the program.

Pooja
06-07-2007, 09:29 AM
Senate votes leave immigration bill in doubt

WASHINGTON (AP) -- A fragile compromise that would legalize millions of unlawful immigrants risks coming unraveled after the Senate voted early Thursday to place a five-year limit on a program meant to provide U.S. employers with 200,000 temporary foreign workers annually.

The 49-48 vote came two weeks after the Senate, also by a one-vote margin, rejected the same amendment by Sen. Byron Dorgan. The North Dakota Democrat says immigrants take many jobs Americans could fill.

The reversal dismayed backers of the immigration bill, which is supported by President Bush but loathed by many conservatives. Business interests and their congressional allies were already angry that the temporary worker program had been cut in half from its original 400,000-person-a-year target.

A five-year sunset, they said, could knock the legs from the precarious bipartisan coalition aligned with the White House. The Dorgan amendment "is a tremendous problem, but it's correctable," said Sen. Arlen Specter, R-Pennsylvania. The coalition will try as early as Thursday to persuade at least one senator to help reverse the outcome yet again, he said.

Until the Dorgan vote was tallied, Specter and other leaders of the so-called "grand bargain" on immigration had enjoyed a fairly good day.

They had turned back a bid to reduce the number of illegal immigrants who could gain lawful status. They also defeated an effort to postpone the bill's shift to an emphasis on education and skills among visa applicants as opposed to family connections.

And they fended off an amendment, by Sen. Barack Obama, D-Illinois, that would have ended a new point system for those seeking permanent resident "green cards" after five years rather than 14 years.

All three amendments were seen as potentially fatal blows to the bill, which would tighten borders, hike penalties for those who hire illegals and give many of the country's estimated 12 million illegal immigrants a pathway to legal status.

The Senate voted 51-46 to reject a proposal by Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, to bar criminals -- including those ordered by judges to be deported -- from gaining legal status. Democrats siphoned support from Cornyn's proposal by winning adoption, 66-32, of a rival version that would bar a more limited set of criminals, including certain gang members and sex offenders, from gaining legalization.

Sen. John McCain, R-Arizona, alone among his party's presidential aspirants in backing the immigration measure, opposed Cornyn's bid and backed the Democratic alternative offered by Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, D-Massachusetts.

Senators also rejected a proposal by Robert Menendez, D-New Jersey, that would have delayed the bill's shift in favor of attracting foreign workers with needed skills as opposed to keeping families together. Menendez won 53 votes, seven short of the 60 needed under a Senate procedural rule invoked by his opponents.

Menendez's proposal would have allowed more than 800,000 people who had applied for permanent legal status by the beginning of 2007 to obtain green cards based purely on their family connections -- a preference the bill ends for most relatives who got in line after May 2005.

Meanwhile, Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-New York, fell short in her bid to remove limits on visas for the spouses and minor children of immigrants with permanent resident status.

While several Cornyn amendments failed, he prevailed on one matter opposed by the grand bargainers. That amendment, adopted 57 to 39, would make it easier to locate and deport illegal immigrants whose visa applications are rejected.

The bill would have barred law enforcement agencies from seeing applications for so-called Z visas, which can lead to citizenship if granted. Cornyn said legal authorities should know if applicants have criminal records that would warrant their deportation.

Opponents said eligible applicants might be afraid to file applications if they believe they are connected to deportation actions. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-California, said in an interview that Cornyn's amendment was "not a deal-killer" but would have to be changed in House-Senate negotiations.

http://www.cnn.com/2007/POLITICS/06/07/congress.immigration.ap/index.html?eref=rss_topstories

starscream
06-07-2007, 10:31 AM
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/c/a/2007/06/07/MNG15QAM241.DTL

VISA PLAN ANGERS SILICON VALLEY
Immigration bill would limit employers' choice of workers
Carolyn Lochhead, Chronicle Washington Bureau

Thursday, June 7, 2007

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(06-07) 04:00 PDT Washington -- Silicon Valley technology companies, usually savvy in the ways of Washington, were shocked to find they had been in their view burned -- badly -- in the Senate's giant immigration overhaul.

Scrambling to catch up, they are lobbying vigorously, enlisting California's Republican Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, to persuade Republicans to preserve their ability to import skilled workers.

"The way in which the whole package was described tended to mislead people about what was being done to whom," said Bruce Morrison, a former Democratic chairman of the House immigration committee now lobbying to change the bill. "And what they've done is quite a disaster."

What the bill does with little public attention is upend the entire employment-based immigration system established in 1952. No longer would employers be able to select their workers; the workers would select them.

All new immigrants would gain permanent admission -- the coveted green card -- through a new merit-based point system that would admit people by their skills, education, English proficiency and other factors. The idea is to raise the skill and education level of immigrants.

Yet rather than winning praise from tech companies seeking skilled workers, the idea has provoked their fury. They want to recruit their own workers, not choose from a pool, and are excoriating the point system as Soviet-style folly.

"We've seen centrally planned economies before -- I believe that's why we fought and won the Cold War," said Robert Hoffman, vice president of government relations for software giant Oracle, based in Redwood Shores. "To scrap the employer-sponsored green cards would seem to suggest that there is something inherently wrong with employers picking the skill set needed for our economy."

Tech companies were surprised by the replacement of the employer-sponsored system with the new point system. While they had complained of green card shortages, they did not ask to change the basic structure of the system.

"Nobody was saying, 'Gee, we really don't like it that IBM gets to decide what computer engineer they need,' " Morrison said. "We don't want people to come sit in the corner and think great thoughts because they have a Ph.D. in something. We want people to come in and be productive. The way we do that in the American economy is we let the market work, and we let people make marketplace decisions about who fits in what job."

High tech companies also are angry over the bill's treatment of the H-1B visa for temporary skilled workers. Even though the over-subscribed annual H-1B quota would almost be doubled in the new bill from 65,000 to 115,000, the bill would remove exemptions for foreigners holding higher degrees, increase fees to $5,000 and generally make the visa harder to use.

The revolutionary changes to employment-based immigration have been widely overlooked amid the uproar over how the point system would affect family migration.

That's because the point system is aimed at curtailing the "chain migration" of extended families. Visas for a future immigrant's brothers, sisters and adult children would be eliminated, and future immigrants would be admitted on the basis of the points they earn for skills, education and other factors.

The plan has drawn howls from immigrant rights groups. But experts point out that the legislation provides extraordinary numbers of new green cards to clear existing family backlogs -- 567,000 permanent slots for each of the next eight years -- before the point system really bites into family migration.

Work-based immigrants, by contrast, would get 260,000 green cards for the next five years, dropping to 140,000 for the three years after that as the estimated 12 million newly legalized workers get a chance at a green card. After eight years in all, visas for work-based immigrants would rise to 380,000, but more than half of those are for spouses and minor children of the worker.

Gary Endelman, a business immigration attorney who writes for the Web site www.ilw.com, called the bill the "wonder drug that family migration advocates have been praying for, and when they finally get it, they walk sightless among the miracle."

Employers and the hundreds of thousands of H-1B workers from India and China seeking green cards contend they're the ones getting short-changed.

Immigration Voice, a group representing H-1B workers, is sending out mass e-mails complaining that skilled immigrants would remain bogged down in long backlogs for green cards and that farm workers, who get special advantages under the bill, could earn 2 1/2 times more points for their U.S. work experience than H-1B workers.

The point system is a key element of the "grand bargain" on immigration reached between the White House and a bipartisan group of senators after months of negotiations. Moving to a merit-based system for future immigration was the pivotal trade-off for Republicans who agreed to grant legalization to the estimated 12 million mainly low-skilled illegal immigrants now in the country.

Morrison, the former congressman, contends the Senate points plan, unlike others, was written "by staff members of Congress who decided how many points a Ph.D. is worth. I mean, how do they know? Where did that come from? There have been no studies, no hearings, no nothing. This isn't from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This is from a bunch of lawyers sitting around a table on Capitol Hill. It's not the way to manage the precious resource of scarce admissions to the United States."

Stuart Anderson, executive director of the National Foundation for American Policy, a pro-business immigration think tank, said per-country limits will drive up the points that Indian and Chinese workers would need to enter, and that heavy weightings for high-demand occupations like maids and waiters could lead to other distortions.

"Literally a Nobel Prize in chemistry could get more points if he said he was coming to work at McDonald's rather than MIT," Anderson said.

Silicon Valley is waging an all-out campaign to change the bill, resting its hopes on Sens. Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., and John Cornyn, R-Texas. The Cantwell-Cornyn amendment would add a parallel system of employer-sponsored green cards to the point system -- doubling work-based visas. It would also remove some of the new hurdles in the H-1B program.

Neither of California's two Democratic senators, Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer, has spoken about the amendment.

"There's a strong tech presence in Texas, and obviously here's a little company in Redmond, Wash., that is important to our economy," Oracle's Hoffman said, referring to Microsoft. "Honestly I don't know where the two California senators are on the amendment."

Schwarzenegger stepped in Monday with a letter to Senate leaders raising "some urgent concerns for California, especially the needs of innovation-based industries that are the backbone of our economic competitiveness."

The Schwarzenegger letter "was a punch in the gut of a lot of Republicans who were part of the grand bargain," said Ralph Hellman, a lobbyist with the Information Technology Industry Council and former GOP aide. "As a leading Republican in a leading high-tech state, it was taken very seriously."

E-mail Carolyn Lochhead at clochhead@sfchronicle.com.

logiclife
06-07-2007, 06:28 PM
Immigrants divided over reform bill (http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/D/DIVIDED_IMMIGRANTS?SITE=MSJAD&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT) By JULIANA BARBASSA Associated Press Writer, June 7

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- As heated as the debate over the immigration overhaul is on Capitol Hill, the divisions may run even deeper among immigrants themselves.

The measure is pitting computer-science Ph.D.s against strawberry pickers, legal immigrants against illegal ones, and those who want it all against those who are grateful for whatever the bill offers.

"Our only hope is immigration reform," said Connie Yoon, a Korean immigrant living illegally with her parents and sister in Chicago. "The chance of legalization - it means everything to us."

The legislation before the Senate could lead to the most sweeping changes in U.S. immigration policy in decades. But America's immigrants do not speak with one voice.

The nation's 35 million foreign-born residents hail from more than 100 countries. Some are illiterate, and some hold advanced degrees. They live amid the bustle of New York City, and in sleepy rural backwaters. Some sneaked across the border, others followed all the rules to get here.

Even the approximately 12 million here illegally - who arguably have the most to gain - are split.

The bill contains a provision that would allow them to stay and work, and eventually become residents. But for that, they have to pay thousands of dollars in fees and fines, learn English, and return to their home countries while immigration officials clear a backlog of residency applications, a process expected to take eight years.

These demands are pushing people who once marched side by side for immigration reform into opposite camps. Some consider the bill woefully inadequate. Others support any route to legal residency, however arduous.

"Right now, we have nothing - just immigration sweeps and deportations," said Nora Sandigo, a Nicaraguan immigrant who is in Miami legally and helps newcomers without documents who are afraid to speak out. "It doesn't matter if they impose conditions. Anything is better than nothing."

But El Salvador native Reina Isabel Flamenco took a day off from working as a home health care aide for the elderly to join a crowd of immigrants gathered outside the San Francisco office of Sen. Dianne Feinstein to call for the bill's defeat.

"Who will take care of my children if I go back to my country to wait for years for my turn to become legal?" said Flamenco, who has not seen her sister and parents since she crossed the border illegally 16 years ago. "They don't understand our reality."

Other illegal immigrants said registering with the Homeland Security Department, as the bill requires, would mean exposing themselves and risking the measure of stability they have found working here.

Frantz, a 24-year-old Haitian immigrant who has been living in the United States illegally since he was 9, sends his grandparents $200 a month from his bartending job in Miami. He is one year away from finishing a degree in business administration and hotel management and is afraid returning to Haiti's political turmoil to await his turn in the long legalization line will derail his career and hurt his grandparents.

"There's no food for them to eat if me and my family don't send them something," said Frantz, who did not want his last name used for fear of being deported.

Among other things, the bill would make it harder for immigrants to bring over family members. Instead, the government would rely on a point system that rewards job skills and education when deciding who should be allowed to enter.

Well-educated professionals are, of course, pleased with that provision, which would replace a system in which employers sponsor would-be immigrants for admission to this country.

"The point system - overall it's great," said Gautam Aggarwal, a software engineer from India working for a Silicon Valley start-up. "Employers won't be able to exploit employees anymore, because skilled persons could apply for a visa on their own."

But Rita Zabala, who has picked grapes and oranges in California's San Joaquin Valley since she was 15, said a point system would be unjust for people like her.

"These are very hard jobs that we are doing out here," said Zabala, 35. But she does support the bill's guest worker program, which would allow immigrants to work temporarily in the United States.

"I have a lot of faith that something fair will happen as far as immigration," she said. "I have a lot of hope."


Gautam, I think is the same guy who was in San Jose in Gutierrez rally. Once again, by saying that Points system is great, he proves his short-sightedness.

Gautam, have you read the friggin bill?????

franklin
06-07-2007, 07:25 PM
I also think he is the same person. I understand that he has admission in Wharton School at U Penn which does not make him US educated and has no points.

My understanding is that he just has BS. I don't know how he will get points with BS.

I am surprised the reporter contacted him!

Let me see what I can dig up from the rest of the NC group - there were quite a few attendees to Gutierrez rally there, they may remember.

In another note, I'll try and get some pressure within the state chapter to correct the AP reporters. Any idea how we can get their email addies?

53885
06-07-2007, 07:28 PM
We have few "Gautam Aggarwal"s in this forum. Since they will score close to 100 points and will get GC before others born in India, they think MBS is good for them.


I also think he is the same person. I understand that he has admission in Wharton School at U Penn which does not make him US educated and has no points.

My understanding is that he just has BS. I don't know how he will get points with BS.

I am surprised the reporter contacted him!

pappu
06-07-2007, 11:59 PM
Let me see what I can dig up from the rest of the NC group - there were quite a few attendees to Gutierrez rally there, they may remember.

In another note, I'll try and get some pressure within the state chapter to correct the AP reporters. Any idea how we can get their email addies?
Thanks

gsc999
06-08-2007, 01:58 AM
Let me see what I can dig up from the rest of the NC group - there were quite a few attendees to Gutierrez rally there, they may remember.

In another note, I'll try and get some pressure within the state chapter to correct the AP reporters. Any idea how we can get their email addies?
---
Yes, that guy at the Town Hall meeting had the same name. Maybe its him. He has an ID on IV with the same name. He might have provided his e-mail and ph number, probably not but worth a try.

Gautam Aggarwal, if you are lurking in the shadows and reading this post, say hello to your friend," Dude in white immigration voice T-Shirt." :o

franklin
06-08-2007, 04:03 AM
---
Gautam Aggarwal, if you are lurking in the shadows and reading this post, say hello to your friend," Dude in white immigration voice T-Shirt." :o

On a day that has tested the nerves of the most steely, this made me chuckle - thanks gsc999 :D

ilikekilo
06-08-2007, 07:08 AM
ok guys its the END....atleat for now

ramus
06-08-2007, 07:24 AM
http://content.msn.co.in/News/International/InternationalAP_080607_1530.htm

Eternal_Hope
06-08-2007, 08:13 AM
Immigration Bill Might Be Dead
After Failing Pivotal Senate Test
Barring White House Push,
Political Climate May Halt
Overhaul Effort for Now
By DAVID ROGERS and SARAH LUECK
June 8, 2007; Page A3

WASHINGTON -- Landmark immigration legislation stumbled badly in the Senate as Majority Leader Harry Reid pulled the bill from the floor after twice failing to get the 60 votes needed to cut off debate.

The Nevada Democrat said he still hoped the measure could be called back up at a later date, but no timetable was given for doing that. Given the hostile political atmosphere in the House and opposition from conservatives, the defeat could prove fatal absent a major commitment by President Bush to salvage the initiative.

The setback followed a roller-coaster day in which the leadership had worked with the White House and Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff to overcome attacks from the left and right with amendments that could unravel the compromise package.

After a late-night phone conversation with Mr. Chertoff Wednesday, Mr. Reid renewed his efforts to negotiate a settlement to end debate. "We need to complete this marathon," Mr. Reid said, and outwardly Mr. Chertoff was still upbeat arriving in the Capitol last evening.

"I am still optimistic we will get a bill," the secretary said. "I'm not sure when."

Republicans wanted to offer more amendments and said they wouldn't be rushed into closing debate on a large, complicated issue. They said they had offered Mr. Reid a deal that could have avoided the defeat, if the Democratic leader had allowed more time. Minority Leader Trent Lott (R., Miss.), while clearly sympathetic with efforts to end debate, warned that Mr. Reid had pressed too hard for what became a "dumb vote."

Only seven Republicans ultimately supported cloture while all but 11 Democrats supported the motion on the 45-50 roll call.

"The headlines are going to be 'President Fails Again,"' Mr. Reid warned.

Yet like the president, the Nevada Democrat faces pressure to show progress on immigration, and walking away after two weeks of difficult votes won't be easy for either party. The diversity on both sides was striking: Democrats voting against ending debate ran from California liberal Sen. Barbara Boxer to Sen. Jim Webb, a populist moderate from Virginia. Republicans who supported cloture included Sen. John McCain, the Arizona conservative, as well as Sen. Arlen Specter, a Pennsylvania moderate.


"No bill at all is not a solution," said Sen. Edward Kennedy (D. Mass.) "You can see the finish line from where we are at," said Sen. Lindsey Graham (R., S.C.)

As drafted, the measure promises to legalize millions of undocumented workers in the U.S. while tightening border security and beefing up enforcement -- steps that weren't taken after the last big immigration bill in 1986. Borders would be secured over the next two years and employers subjected to much tougher worker-verification rules. And a business-backed program allowing 200,000 foreign guest workers into the country every year is considered vital since it would reduce the workload on border agents, who can then pursue smugglers and potential terrorists.

Mr. Chertoff played a lead role in the talks that shaped the Senate bill, and with President Bush in Europe this week, he has come to the fore. His background as a prosecutor and federal judge has been helpful, and he plays the compassionate cop, promising law and order to conservatives but also a dose of hope for immigrants.

"I understand there is an elegance to the proposition that when you break the law you should not benefit from it," the secretary said. "But I also recognize in real life...there are degrees to breaking the law. It's important to solve the problem, as opposed to holding out for a purity of resolution that doesn't exist in the real world."

In forcing the cloture votes, Mr. Reid appeared intent on getting the Senate to focus on the measure at hand, but also put pressure on Mr. Bush to become more involved in an issue he has staked as one of his top legislative priorities this year.


"I want to finish this bill but I can't do it alone. We did more than our share here tonight on the cloture vote. But we need some support and I hope the president understands that there's only about 16 months until there is an election and a new president," said Mr. Reid.

"It will come back when the president calls Harry Reid and says we can get some more votes for you," said Sen. Charles Schumer (D., N.Y.)

On Wednesday night, there were telltale switches among conservatives, who joined labor Democrats on a 49-48 vote to end the guest worker program after five years, in hopes of weakening the larger bill. "I've been trying to kill [the bill] since the beginning" said Sen. Jim Bunning (R., Ky.).

Amid the rancor, high-tech companies remain hopeful that they would see some improvements in provisions surrounding the H1-B visas they use to bring skilled immigrant workers to the U.S. This optimism followed what was described as a positive meeting Wednesday afternoon between Microsoft Chief Executive Steve Ballmer and Sen. Jon Kyl, the Arizonan shepherding the bill on the Republican side. Companies have said a new merit-based point system in the bill wrests away their control over retaining specific foreign workers, and that the bill wouldn't allow enough high-skilled workers to become permanent residents.

reddysn
06-08-2007, 12:50 PM
IV in the news .hope it is not repost..

http://www.insidebayarea.com/timesstar/ci_6091895

http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2007/06/08/america/NA-GEN-US-Immigration-Skilled-Workers.php

http://www.expressindia.com/fullstory.php?newsid=87869

GCBy3000
06-08-2007, 05:08 PM
I live in small city in WI and got this article published. I myself surprised to hear from the editor that they are not aware of any legal immigrant issue. It went for other journals also.

http://www.stevenspointjournal.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070607/SPJ06/70606166/1711

rameshms
06-08-2007, 05:19 PM
Excellent article, without delving into the technical details (Labor, 140, 485 etc). Even a lay man will be able to understand this article clearly.

Thank You

I live in small city in WI and got this article published. I myself surprised to hear from the editor that they are not aware of any legal immigrant issue. It went for other journals also.

http://www.stevenspointjournal.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070607/SPJ06/70606166/1711

sandy_anand
06-08-2007, 05:21 PM
I live in small city in WI and got this article published. I myself surprised to hear from the editor that they are not aware of any legal immigrant issue. It went for other journals also.

http://www.stevenspointjournal.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070607/SPJ06/70606166/1711

Excellent, well written article, Dinesh. Congratulations!

starscream
06-08-2007, 05:28 PM
I live in small city in WI and got this article published. I myself surprised to hear from the editor that they are not aware of any legal immigrant issue. It went for other journals also.

http://www.stevenspointjournal.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070607/SPJ06/70606166/1711
Dinesh very good article!!!.

Here is an idea I have everyone please let me know if it is OK to take a look at this...With Dinesh's permission would it be a good idea to get his article reprinted in whatever news publications / news journals/news mags (big/small/local) that we can get this published in . We r spread all over the US. Such a drive would create awareness of legal immigration problems.

Dinesh I sent you a PM

stuckinmuck
06-08-2007, 05:44 PM
Excellent article however should we mention the example of H1B visa? Unfortunately, it has gained a bad reputation and I was wondering if the article can be edited to just mention work visa instead of H1B. I am concerned people might notice H1B visa and just trash the whole cause by confusing it with EB GC issues.

I live in small city in WI and got this article published. I myself surprised to hear from the editor that they are not aware of any legal immigrant issue. It went for other journals also.

http://www.stevenspointjournal.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070607/SPJ06/70606166/1711

logiclife
06-08-2007, 08:00 PM
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/19116108

Bush is going to lobby the Senate for CIR on Tuesday and give it one more try. The number 45(who voted against cloture) should not go to 60. Otherwise, CIR passes.

Its very unlikely that it would pass but still, its not dead yet.

waitnwatch
06-08-2007, 08:35 PM
Look at this nonsensical statement by one of our own

http://www.southcoasttoday.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070608/NEWS/706080362/1018/OPINION

Immigration bill pits Ph.D.s against strawberry pickers, legal immigrants against illegals

By JULIANA BARBASSA
Associated Press writer
June 08, 2007 6:00 AM

SAN FRANCISCO — As heated as the debate over the immigration overhaul is on Capitol Hill, the divisions may run even deeper among immigrants themselves.

The measure is pitting computer-science Ph.D.s against strawberry pickers, legal immigrants against illegal ones, and those who want it all against those who are grateful for whatever the bill offers.

"Our only hope is immigration reform," said Connie Yoon, a Korean immigrant living illegally with her parents and sister in Chicago. "The chance of legalization — it means everything to us."

The legislation before the Senate could lead to the most sweeping changes in U.S. immigration policy in decades. But America's immigrants do not speak with one voice.

The nation's 35 million foreign-born residents hail from more than 100 countries. Some are illiterate, and some hold advanced degrees. They live amid the bustle of New York City, and in sleepy rural backwaters. Some sneaked across the border, others followed all the rules to get here.

Even the approximately 12 million here illegally — who arguably have the most to gain — are split.

The bill contains a provision that would allow them to stay and work, and eventually become residents. But for that, they have to pay thousands of dollars in fees and fines, learn English, and return to their home countries while immigration officials clear a backlog of residency applications, a process expected to take eight years.

These demands are pushing people who once marched side by side for immigration reform into opposite camps. Some consider the bill woefully inadequate. Others support any route to legal residency, however arduous.

"Right now, we have nothing — just immigration sweeps and deportations," said Nora Sandigo, a Nicaraguan immigrant who is in Miami legally and helps newcomers without documents who are afraid to speak out. "It doesn't matter if they impose conditions. Anything is better than nothing."

But El Salvador native Reina Isabel Flamenco took a day off from working as a home health care aide for the elderly to join a crowd of immigrants gathered outside the San Francisco office of Sen. Dianne Feinstein to call for the bill's defeat.

"Who will take care of my children if I go back to my country to wait for years for my turn to become legal?" said Flamenco, who has not seen her sister and parents since she crossed the border illegally 16 years ago. "They don't understand our reality."

Other illegal immigrants said registering with the Homeland Security Department, as the bill requires, would mean exposing themselves and risking the measure of stability they have found working here.

Frantz, a 24-year-old Haitian immigrant who has been living in the United States illegally since he was 9, sends his grandparents $200 a month from his bartending job in Miami. He is one year away from finishing a degree in business administration and hotel management and is afraid returning to Haiti's political turmoil to await his turn in the long legalization line will derail his career and hurt his grandparents.

"There's no food for them to eat if me and my family don't send them something," said Frantz, who did not want his last name used for fear of being deported.

Among other things, the bill would make it harder for immigrants to bring over family members. Instead, the government would rely on a point system that rewards job skills and education when deciding who should be allowed to enter.

Well-educated professionals are, of course, pleased with that provision, which would replace a system in which employers sponsor would-be immigrants for admission to this country.

"The point system — overall it's great," said Gautam Aggarwal, a software engineer from India working for a Silicon Valley start-up. "Employers won't be able to exploit employees anymore, because skilled persons could apply for a visa on their own."
But Rita Zabala, who has picked grapes and oranges in California's San Joaquin Valley since she was 15, said a point system would be unjust for people like her.

"These are very hard jobs that we are doing out here," said Zabala, 35. But she does support the bill's guest worker program, which would allow immigrants to work temporarily in the United States.

"I have a lot of faith that something fair will happen as far as immigration," she said. "I have a lot of hope."

Eternal_Hope
06-08-2007, 08:41 PM
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/19116108

Bush is going to lobby the Senate for CIR on Tuesday and give it one more try. The number 45(who voted against cloture) should not go to 60. Otherwise, CIR passes.

Its very unlikely that it would pass but still, its not dead yet.


I think they will have another "compromise" - Democrats will let Rebulicians introduce (and vote on) some more amendments in return for Rebulicans consenting to let the final bill be voted upon.

I think we should not let our guard down just yet. We should still be pushing for amendments that benefit us.

Legal
06-08-2007, 10:08 PM
[QUOTE=waitnwatch]Look at this nonsensical statement by one of our own

[Well-educated professionals are, of course, pleased with that provision, which would replace a system in which employers sponsor would-be immigrants for admission to this country.

"The point system — overall it's great," said Gautam Aggarwal, a software engineer from India working for a Silicon Valley start-up. "Employers won't be able to exploit employees anymore, because skilled persons could apply for a visa on their own."

The above story may not even be true...Gautam Aggarwal may not even exist.:) ..... the idea is to make it appear that the bill favors skilled immigrants....and very cruel to illegals.... and push under the carpet the fact that z-visa is actually express greencard delivered in 24 hours..

factoryman
06-08-2007, 10:19 PM
Point System is no panacea for the GC ills. The oft quote Canadian Experience is probably a failure. The main criteria should be a genuine and solid job offer - if this system comes on board.

All take your time and see this till the end (http://img.youtube.com/vi/VhSWoMK_3zo/2.jpg). It is a full report of what is happening over there. So don't drool.

Look at this nonsensical statement by one of our own

[Well-educated professionals are, of course, pleased with that provision, which would replace a system in which employers sponsor would-be immigrants for admission to this country.

"The point system — overall it's great," said Gautam Aggarwal, a software engineer from India working for a Silicon Valley start-up. "Employers won't be able to exploit employees anymore, because skilled persons could apply for a visa on their own."

The above story may not even be true...Gautam Aggarwal may not even exist.:) ..... the idea is to make it appear that the bill favors skilled immigrants....and very cruel to illegals.... and push under the carpet the fact that z-visa is actually express greencard delivered in 24 hours..

pappu
06-08-2007, 10:41 PM
There were a few articles today that mentioned IV. Could someone search on the web and collect all their urls and mail me. Thanks

Eternal_Hope
06-08-2007, 11:16 PM
There were a few articles today that mentioned IV. Could someone search on the web and collect all their urls and mail me. Thanks

1. http://www.insidebayarea.com/timesstar/ci_6091895
2. http://www.mercurynews.com/columns/ci_6072055
3. http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2007/06/08/america/NA-GEN-US-Immigration-Skilled-Workers.php
4. http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/c/a/2007/06/07/MNG15QAM241.DTL

reddysn
06-09-2007, 07:23 AM
This article explains clearly the drama of thrusday and their stratagies ..

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/06/08/AR2007060802771_2.html

Dirk Krueger
06-09-2007, 08:58 AM
I know it sounds evil, but may it not be time to plainly oppose benefits for illegals? Clearly, the CIR discussion has shown the contempt of certain lawmakers and the ignorance of others. As they will sacrifice any legitimate way to legally immigrate to please the Latino voter block, I think that pro-legal immigration groups should spell out outright opposition to benefits for illegals. There is no piggy-backing on improvements or amnesty for illegals! It will not happen. Align yourself with some parts of the conservatives. He, why not even offer that legal immigrants after receiving GC will go huntin' down illegal border crossers if that is what needs to be done. This is a bit ironic and provocative, but maybe it will wake up the right part of society.

vijjus
06-09-2007, 10:35 PM
The weekend journal has Sen. Kyl's interview:

"Temporary means temporary. There's already been one whack at that and there may be other efforts to allow temporary workers to stay here permanently and that would be a deal breaker."

He say's that when asked what are deal breakers for him. My questions are:

1. Is he talking about H1Bs?
2. Is he with us or against us?

gc_chahiye
06-10-2007, 12:52 AM
The weekend journal has Sen. Kyl's interview:

"Temporary means temporary. There's already been one whack at that and there may be other efforts to allow temporary workers to stay here permanently and that would be a deal breaker."

He say's that when asked what are deal breakers for him. My questions are:

1. Is he talking about H1Bs?
2. Is he with us or against us?

1. I believe he is talking about Y visa holders, but who knows we might get caught in this too.

2. he is not for us, I dont know if he has actively done anything against us (like Durbin/Sanders/Grassley etc). Cornyn is perhaps the only senator who has come out for us, even in the past.

sphere41
06-10-2007, 03:09 AM
http://www.filecabi.net/video/mexican-attends-anti-immigration-rally.html

intersting.......

syzygy
06-10-2007, 03:31 AM
Do these reporters have records to validate names on their articles. I am sure this Gautam is most likely fictious and if yes can we take the reporter to terms?

[QUOTE=waitnwatch]Look at this nonsensical statement by one of our own

[Well-educated professionals are, of course, pleased with that provision, which would replace a system in which employers sponsor would-be immigrants for admission to this country.

"The point system — overall it's great," said Gautam Aggarwal, a software engineer from India working for a Silicon Valley start-up. "Employers won't be able to exploit employees anymore, because skilled persons could apply for a visa on their own."

The above story may not even be true...Gautam Aggarwal may not even exist.:) ..... the idea is to make it appear that the bill favors skilled immigrants....and very cruel to illegals.... and push under the carpet the fact that z-visa is actually express greencard delivered in 24 hours..

n_2006
06-10-2007, 12:14 PM
Every person thinks different. Don't you think reporter got a person who thinks in his/her view.

Do these reporters have records to validate names on their articles. I am sure this Gautam is most likely fictious and if yes can we take the reporter to terms?

[QUOTE=Legal]

starscream
06-10-2007, 01:03 PM
only if the CIR comes back..maybe..http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2007/06/09/H1B.TMP

indianindian2006
06-11-2007, 03:13 AM
http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2007/06/20070608-10.html


Best of the Immigration Fact Check: Top 10 Common Myths



White House News


In Focus: Immigration


1. MYTH: This is amnesty.

FACT: Amnesty is the forgiveness of an offense without penalty. This proposal is not amnesty because illegal workers must acknowledge that they broke the law, pay a $1,000 fine, and undergo criminal background checks to obtain a Z visa granting temporary legal status.
FACT: To apply for a green card at a date years into the future, Z visa workers must wait in line behind those who applied lawfully, pay an additional $4,000 fine, complete accelerated English requirements, leave the U.S. and file their application in their home country, and demonstrate merit based on the skills and attributes they will bring to the United States.
FACT: Workers approved for Z visas will be given a temporary legal status, but they will not enjoy the full privileges of citizens or Legal Permanent Residents, such as welfare benefits and the ability to sponsor relatives abroad as immigrants.
2. MYTH: This proposal repeats the mistakes of the 1986 Immigration Reform and Control Act.

FACT: The 1986 Act failed because it provided amnesty for 3 million immigrants, did not adequately secure borders, did not include a workable employer verification system, and created no legal avenue to meet the labor needs of the American economy.
FACT: This proposal addresses every one of the shortcomings from 1986:


No Amnesty: Illegal workers must acknowledge that they broke the law and pay a fine to be eligible for a Z visa.


Border Security: Border security benchmarks must be met before the Z visa and temporary worker programs go into effect. These triggers include miles of fencing and vehicle barriers at the border and increasing the size of the Border Patrol.


Employer Verification System: An Employment Eligibility Verification System must be established and in use before any temporary worker or Z visas are issued.


Temporary Worker Program: A temporary worker program will relieve pressure on the border and provide a lawful way to meet the needs of our economy.
FACT: The 1986 Act offered green cards after just 18 months, but under this proposal, green card applicants must meet a number of responsibilities – something which will take most candidates more than a decade.
3. MYTH: DHS has only one day to complete background checks for illegal immigrants already in the U.S.

FACT: To obtain probationary status, illegal immigrants must come out of the shadows to acknowledge they have broken the law and pass a preliminary background check. There is a provision in the bill that says DHS has one day to find a "disqualifying factor," but that is not the end of the process. That is a very short term way of ensuring that if someone comes out of the shadows and admits their illegality, they will not be deported while the process is ongoing and can continue working while the full background check is completed.
FACT: Illegal immigrants may not obtain probationary status without applying for the Z visa. Probationary status may be revoked at any time if a worker is found ineligible for the Z visa, fails to maintain a clean record, or fails the background check required for obtaining a Z visa.
FACT: To remain in the United States, Z visa holders are subject to updated background checks on criminal and security history and must maintain a clean record.
4. MYTH: The temporary worker program is bad for American workers.

FACT: The temporary worker program relieves pressure on the border and meets our economic needs by allowing workers to enter the country to fill jobs that Americans are not doing.
FACT: The program protects American workers by requiring U.S. employers to advertise the job in the United States at a competitive wage before hiring a temporary worker.
FACT: To ensure "temporary" means "temporary," workers are limited to three two-year terms, with at least a year spent outside the United States between each term.
FACT: A cap of 200,000 is set on the program.
5. MYTH: The government will not and cannot meet its promise to crack down on the hiring of illegal workers.

FACT: Before any temporary worker or Z visas are issued, an Employment Eligibility Verification System (EEVS) must be established and in use to prevent unauthorized workers from obtaining jobs in the United States.
FACT: Employers will be required to verify the work eligibility of all employees using the EEVS, and all workers will be required to present stronger and more readily verifiable identification documents. Tough new anti-fraud measures will be implemented to restrict fraud and identity theft.
FACT: Employers who hire illegal workers will face stiff new criminal and civil penalties. For example, the maximum criminal penalty for a pattern or practice of hiring illegals will increase 25-fold, from $3,000 per alien to $75,000 per alien.
6. MYTH: Illegal immigrants will come out of the shadows and on to the welfare rolls.

FACT: Z visa workers are not entitled to welfare, Food Stamps, SSI, non-emergency Medicaid, or other programs and privileges enjoyed by U.S. citizens and some Legal Permanent Residents.
FACT: In order to apply for Z visa status, workers must be employed; in order to maintain Z visa status, they must remain employed
FACT: CBO estimates increased revenue from taxes, penalties, and fines under the bill will offset any estimated increases in mandatory spending, such as emergency Medicaid, and produce a net fiscal surplus of $25.6 billion over 10 years. This surplus will be used to cover costs of implementing the bill, including a significant portion of the costs of better securing our borders and improving interior enforcement through additional Border Patrol and ICE agents.
7. MYTH: Illegal immigrants may stay in probationary status for years without having to apply or meet requirements for a Z visa.

FACT: Illegal immigrants may not obtain probationary status without applying for the Z visa, which requires coming out of the shadows and passing a background check.
FACT: Probationary status is valid only while a Z visa application is pending – it may be revoked at any time if the applicant is found ineligible for the Z visa, fails to maintain a clean record, or fails the background check required for obtaining a Z visa.
FACT: If a worker is deemed eligible for a Z visa, probationary status terminates, and the worker must transition to a Z visa or leave the country. Transitioning to Z status will require the worker to pay a $1,000 fine for head of household and $500 per dependent; up to $1,500 in processing fees per applicant, including heads of household and dependents; and a $500 state impact assistance fee.
FACT: To remain in the United States, the worker is subject to updated background checks on criminal and security history and must stay employed, maintain a clean record, and meet accelerated English and civics requirements by set deadlines. In addition, Z visa holders must pay processing fees of up to $1,500 every four years in order to renew the visa. Z visa holders are not entitled to welfare, Food Stamps, SSI, or non-emergency Medicaid.
8. MYTH: Illegal workers who remained in the country after they were ordered deported by an immigration judge are eligible for Z visas.

FACT: Illegal workers who ignored deportation orders are not eligible for the Z visa program, except in exceedingly rare cases in which they can demonstrate their departure would "result in extreme hardship."
FACT: The determination of what constitutes "extreme hardship" lies entirely within the discretion of the Secretary of Homeland Security, who has no interest in allowing this exception to be abused.

indianindian2006
06-11-2007, 03:14 AM
http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2007/06/20070608-10.html


Best of the Immigration Fact Check: Top 10 Common Myths continued....



White House News


In Focus: Immigration

9. MYTH: The bill allows dangerous gang members access to the Z visa program if they renounce their gang affiliation.

FACT: Any gang member convicted of any of a wide range of criminal conduct is not permitted in the Z visa program, whether he or she has renounced his gang affiliation or not. The list of crimes that disqualify Z visa applicants extends into the thousands and includes:
Any felony.
Any three misdemeanors.
Any serious criminal offense.
Violations of any law relating to a controlled substance.
FACT: Even if a gang member or other applicant has not been convicted of a crime, he or she is ineligible for the Z visa program if the Government concludes that he is sufficiently dangerous. This is true for all applicants, including gang members who have renounced their affiliations. For example, among those ineligible is any gang member (or other applicant):
About whom there are "reasonable grounds" for regarding as a danger to the security of the United States;
Who the Government knows or has reason to believe seeks to enter the U.S. "solely, principally, or incidentally" to engage in unlawful activity; or
About whom there are reasonable grounds for believing has committed a serious criminal offense outside the U.S.
FACT: The bill would, for the first time, give the Departments of Homeland Security (DHS) and Justice (DOJ) tools to keep certain aliens out of the United States solely on the basis of their participation in a gang. No conviction is required – if an individual has associated with a gang and helped "aid" or "support" its illegal activity, then he or she is not allowed to remain in the country – even if he renounces his gang affiliation.
10. MYTH: By providing an opportunity for citizenship to illegal immigrants already here, the bill will exponentially increase extended-family chain migration.

FACT: The proposal reforms our immigration system to create a new balance between family connections and our national interests and economic needs.
FACT: Green cards for parents of U.S. citizens are capped, while set-asides for the siblings of U.S. citizens and the adult children of U.S. citizens and green card holders are eliminated.
FACT: To help keep our economy competitive, a new merit-based system similar to those used by other countries will give preference to attributes that further our national interest such as: job offers in high-demand fields, ability to speak English, and education.

nat23
06-11-2007, 08:38 AM
SOFIA, Bulgaria - President Bush, turning from adulation in the Balkans to difficulties back home, said Monday that his stalled immigration overhaul would be revived and his embattled attorney general would not fall under a Senate vote of no-confidence.


"I'll see you at the bill signing," Bush said confidently about an immigration bill that has run into deep trouble on Capitol Hill.

Bush plans to trek to Capitol Hill on Tuesday to have lunch with Republican senators, part of a hands-on approach to persuading party conservatives that the bill is better than the status quo.

He also dismissed a planned Senate vote against Attorney General Alberto Gonzales as a purely political "meaningless resolution," saying it would have "no bearing" on Gonzales' fate.

"I'll make the determination if I think he's effective or not," Bush said.

The no-confidence vote follows months of investigations and the disclosure of internal Justice Department documents that contradicted Gonzales' initial assertions that the firing of federal prosecutors was not politically motivated or directly coordinated with the White House. Bush dinged the Democratic-controlled Senate for ditching the immigration debate in favor of the Gonzales matter.

Warmly welcomed in both Bulgaria and Albania, the president spoke at a news conference in one of Europe's oldest capitals with Bulgarian President Georgi Parvanov. He was to be back at the White House Monday evening, after an eight-day trip that also took him to the Czech Republic, Poland, Germany, Italy and Albania.

On a sunny, cool morning, thousands of Bulgarians lined the cobblestoned main street through Nevsky as an honor guard played both countries' national anthems.

Bush and Parvanov walked past a line of Bulgarian troops wearing white coats trimmed in red and navy pants tucked in high black boots. After watching troops goose-stepping to upbeat military music, Bush prayed before a wreath at an eternal flame that marks Bulgaria's tomb of the unknown soldier.

The president greeted a line of Bulgarian soldiers in camouflaged uniforms who have served in Iraq and Afghanistan. The Bulgarian parliament recently extended the Iraq mission until March 2008, and last year, Bulgaria signed an agreement with Washington allowing U.S. troops to use Bulgarian military facilities.

Bush then worked a crowd of locals, reaching in to shake hands. Later outside the news conference, he eagerly approached another curious gathering — the third time in two days he has done something he rarely does at home.

In contrast to thousands of anti-Bush protests at earlier stops and his low approval rating at home, Bush seemed to bask in the affection he received here and, even more enthusiastically, in Albania the day before.

Bush's comments on immigration reflected his determination to pass a bill to give millions of unlawful immigrants a path to citizenship. It is a top priority for the remainder of his presidency, but a fragile bipartisan compromise on the issue has unraveled.
He has been criticized for not doing enough for the bill, which is bitterly opposed by many conservatives in his party. Some lawmakers claim it is dead for the year, but Bush said it was only one step back after "two steps forward" and vowed to push ahead.
"I believe we can get it done," he said.

Once again, Bush was asked about Russian President Vladimir Putin's surprise counterproposal to the U.S. plan for a missile shield in Eastern Europe, based in the Czech Republic and Poland. Putin proposed instead a system anchored around a Soviet-era radar installation in Azerbaijan.

"I don't know whether it's technologically feasible," Bush said of Putin's idea, promising a review by experts.

Bulgaria's leaders are worried that the rocket shield is not intended to cover southeastern parts of Europe, including their own country. Bush said that isn't needed because other defenses cover Bulgaria, but Parvanov said he would only "accept any solution that would provide more guarantees, more security guarantees."

Another worry comes from the tensions the proposed shield have created between the United States and Russia. Moscow fiercely opposes the plan, fearing the shield is aimed at Russia. The United States says no — the shield is aimed at Iran, in case it develops nuclear weapons.

Bulgaria feels caught in the middle. It was the most loyal Soviet ally during the Cold War, and even now is almost entirely dependent on Russian energy supplies.

"Bulgaria should not have to choose between the friendship between the U.S. and the friendship with Russia," Parvanov said.

Bush stressed the strength of U.S. relations with Bulgaria, which shed communism in 1989 and joined NATO in 2004 and the European Union in January.

Parvanov appealed for U.S. help in freeing five Bulgarian nurses and a Palestinian doctor sentenced to death in Libya for allegedly infecting hundreds of children with the AIDS virus. They have been in Libyan custody since 1999, and all deny the charge.

Bush pledged the U.S. will press the Libyan government for their release and contribute to a fund to help the children. "This is an issue that we care about," he said.

Bush also met with Prime Minister Sergei Stanishev, and Parvanov feted him at a formal luncheon at the National Museum of History, outside of town at the foot of green mountains.

"For a person who was raised in the deserts of Texas, this is a beautiful view," Bush said, gesturing to the floor-to-ceiling windows that afforded a dramatic view.

___

Associated Press Writer William J. Kole in Sofia contributed to this report

mmandal
06-11-2007, 10:07 AM
Other than disparaging their activities, what exactly did YOU do?



Let me tell you about this organization called USINPAC. These guys are very good in making a show about “doing something”. But in reality, these guys are good for absolutely nothing. They are only interested in taking pictures and putting on their website to show that they have proximity to power. Indian community gets impressed by the pictures and thinks that this organization is doing something. Reality is – they don’t even know what the issue is, they don’t care what the issue is, they don’t know what is in the bill and they don’t know what should be in the bill. All that they do is talk in broad strokes to impress people who see things from a distance. If anybody is depending on USINPAC to do something then it’s all doing to go to dogs and it would best to wind-up now.

As far as pictures with lawmakers are concerned, anybody can take pictures dime a dozen if you are willing to travel to DC. But guys at USINPAC try to put pictures on their website simply to show that they have proximity to power. It is better to have enemies than to have friends/self proclaimed community leaders like USINPAC. Atleast you won't depend on your enemies and know that they can attack you. Orgs like USINPAC disguise as your friends and use tools like deception to their advantage.

Look at this article: http://www.usinpac.com/news_details.asp?News_ID=60

Other than first paragraph, the remaining five (5) are simply advertisement about the “greatness” of this organization. These idiots have no clue about the issue. Call them and find out yourself, you will see that such “self proclaimed leaders” of “the community” are no better than poo poo.

engineer
06-11-2007, 04:08 PM
http://money.cnn.com/2007/06/08/magazines/fsb/immigrant_universities.fsb/index.htm?cnn=yes

"More than half of the immigrant founders of tech and engineering firms launched in the U.S. between 1995 and 2005 came to the U.S. to further their education, and 53 percent earned their highest degrees in the U.S., according to the just-released research on 1,572 companies, conducted by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, a nonprofit in Kansas City that promotes entrepreneurship. The study was conducted by researchers at Duke University and the University of California at Berkeley. Only 1.6 percent entered this country with the sole goal of starting a business, according to the results"

waitnwatch
06-11-2007, 04:13 PM
http://www.cqpolitics.com/2007/06/immigration_supporters_to_blit.html

By Michael Sandler and Jonathan Allen, CQ Staff

Interest groups will blitz Capitol Hill this week in an attempt to revive a nearly dead immigration overhaul, with a mission of bringing it back for one more try on the Senate floor. President Bush also will personally make his pitch in a rare Capitol Hill trip Tuesday.

But whether they have the influence to push a bipartisan compromise past a political stalemate could determine whether Bush gets an immigration bill this year — or the issue fades until after he leaves office.

Hopes of passing legislation suffered a major setback June 7 when most Republicans and nearly a dozen Democrats blocked three procedural votes that would have cleared the way for a final vote on a carefully negotiated deal.

Three failed cloture votes — two in which not a single Republican voted in favor — would normally kill a bill, and that could still happen.

But business lobbyists, labor unions, religious organizations and Hispanic advocacy groups are making the case that if Congress misses this opportunity, another might not come for a while.

Although many bill supporters have misgivings about some provisions, they are pushing for the Senate to turn back to immigration before the July Fourth recess.

“It’s a matter of what happens behind closed doors in the next couple of weeks,” said Angelo Amador, director of immigration policy for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. “Immigration is the one issue where regular rules don’t apply.”

Frank Sharry, executive director for the National Immigration Forum — a coalition of Hispanic Advocacy groups, business leaders, labor unions and clergy — called the impasse a temporary setback and said the coalition is “optimistic about getting it back to the Senate Floor.”

Eliseo Medina, executive vice president for the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), said his organization will continue to press for action this year. “We are looking to just try to get it out with Republicans not doing any more damage than they have done,” Medina said. “We are going to be mobilizing a lot more activity in the field to make sure it does happen.”

Returning to the bill is pointless, however, if the votes are not there. To get to 60, supporters need to more than triple the number of Republicans — seven — who broke ranks with their party to support the third and final cloture vote June 7, which failed, 45-50.

Finding another 15 Republicans to join the 37 Democrats and one independent who voted for cloture won’t be easy. The task will include both substantive and procedural challenges.

Unusual Visit

Lending perhaps the most influential policy voice will be the president. Bush is expected to make a rare appearance at the GOP senators’ policy lunch Tuesday to implore his caucus to get behind a bill that the administration and some of the Senate’s most conservative members helped draft.

The Republicans he will likely be targeting include Johnny Isakson and Saxby Chambliss, both of Georgia, who were closely involved in drafting the deal but have yet to fully commit, and perhaps John Ensign of Nevada and John Cornyn of Texas, who are undecided.

Procedurally, Senate backers of the measure and their staffs will attempt to work out a compromise on nearly a dozen GOP amendments, clearing the obstacle that doomed the legislation last week.

Much will hinge on Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., who has been ambivalent about the legislation all along but pledged to give the issue another try.

Reid wants Republicans to agree on a time certain for a final vote. But they have been unwilling to give him that guarantee until they settle on a list of amendments and get his word that all those amendments will be put to a vote.

“Unless there is more flexibility and latitude granted, you are going to get objections,” said John Thune, R-S.D., who was helping to whittle a list of nearly 300 amendments down to less than 20 last week.

For some, it’s not about the numbers.

“It’s not a very long list,” said Jim DeMint, R-S.C. “We just want to make sure [Democrats] don’t pick our amendments.”

Republicans are not the only problem. To win the votes of Chambliss and Isakson, the bill almost certainly has to move to the right. And that risks losing more Democrats, many of whom already say the bill is too far to the right.

Majority Whip Richard J. Durbin, D-Ill., said he doesn’t expect much movement from the 11 Democrats and one independent, Bernard Sanders of Vermont, who voted against the decisive third cloture motion. Even Durbin has reservations, saying he voted to end debate “purely for process reasons.”

“I’m troubled by it,” Durbin said of the bill. However, he has indicated that he likely would vote for it based on expectations that it will be modified more to Democrats’ liking in the House and in conference.

Democrats and their allies in organized labor have raised concerns about the temporary worker program and Republican efforts to curtail so-called chain migration based on family ties.

Some organized labor constituencies, including the SEIU, have taken Durbin’s approach — it’s better to move forward with a bill with some provisions they oppose rather than stop it in its tracks. Others, including the AFL-CIO, are skeptical that it can be fixed.

In the middle of all this is Edward M. Kennedy, D-Mass., the bill manager, a longtime champion for organized labor but also a shrewd dealmaker.

“I feel he’s in a difficult spot trying to negotiate with some Republicans,” said Sonia Ramirez, a legislative representative with the AFL-CIO. She added that they “agree to disagree” on the bill. “We recognize he is trying to do the right thing,” Ramirez said.

House Democrats continue to insist that they will wait for a clear sign from the Senate before taking on the issue. “If the Senate’s not going to vote, then there’s no reason for us to take it up,” said Loretta Sanchez, D-Calif., chairwoman of the House Homeland Security Subcommittee on Border, Maritime and Global Counterterrorism.

House members are not going to want to expose themselves to criticism by voting for a controversial immigration bill that can’t pass the Senate, Sanchez said.

“If I were leadership on both sides, why would I even ask them to take that vote if it’s going to end up in the trash bin?” she said.

waitnwatch
06-11-2007, 04:18 PM
http://www.chinapost.com.tw/business/112090.htm

By Rob Lever, Washington, AFP

U.S. high-tech industry leaders say they will maintain a fight in Congress to address what they claim is a critical shortage of skilled workers, despite the collapse of an immigration overhaul bill this past week.
Key technology executives had been pushing for changes to the immigration bill in the Senate to make it easier to hire foreign-born computer scientists and other skilled professionals before the compromise measure collapsed.

"We're hopeful the Senate will be able to find a way to get this process back on track," said Robert Hoffman, an executive at Oracle and co-chair of Compete America, a coalition of computer and electronics firms and other business groups focused on immigration.

"The issues we're facing on the skilled immigration front are so important, we hope the Senate will find a path forward."

Even as technology executives including Microsoft chief executive Steve Ballmer were furiously lobbying in the past week to modify the latest bill to provide more visas for skilled workers, the compromise immigration bill was withdrawn by Democratic Senate leader Harry Reid.

"At Microsoft alone we have 3,000 core technical positions we have not been able to fill in the United States because of the lack of available qualified applicants," said company spokeswoman Ginny Terzano.

Terzano said Ballmer met with lawmakers to discuss "the urgent need to fix the immigration system. if the high-tech industry in the U.S. is going to be able to hire and retain qualified workers."

While Senate leaders and President George W. Bush had warned against modifications to the fragile compromise on immigration reform, tech industry leaders claimed their were flaws in the latest measure that could make it even harder to attract top-flight professionals.

The bill as written, tech executives said, would have failed to provide enough relief for companies struggling to fill jobs. Some argued that the companies should have the same type of exemptions as major sports leagues, which can lure foreign-born players with special skills.

The high-tech industry says many of those working in the global-leading sector are immigrants themselves, including Google co-founder Sergey Brin.

Lazlo Bock, vice president for people operations at Google, told a congressional hearing Wednesday: "The U.S. scientific, engineering, and tech communities cannot hope to maintain their present position of international leadership if they are unable to hire and retain highly educated foreign talent."

Some critics of the H-1B visa program say it is used to depress wages in the tech sector, with the hiring of engineers from India and other Asian nations, and argue that evidence of a shortage is not entirely clear.

But Hoffman said multinationals such as Oracle and Microsoft are faced with a dilemma because of the visa shortage, and often must relocate those jobs offshore.

"We have hundreds of job openings at Oracle. The problem is not our ability to hire the individuals, the problem is having them work in the U.S. ," Hoffman said.

"So the real loser is not Oracle or Microsoft. We can hire them, we just can't put them to work in the United States. We're locking out the U.S. economy from the benefits of their working here."

Phil Bond, president of the Information Technology Association of America, said he hopes lawmakers will revisit the wide-ranging immigration bill.

Bond said key provisions should include exemptions from immigration caps for foreign students receiving an advanced degree from a U.S. university, as well as those with degrees in science, technology, engineering or mathematics at foreign universities.

ITAA also will press for a new student visa category, to allow U.S. degree holders who have a job offer to transition directly from student visa to an immigrant "green card."

"Our country is facing a talent crisis that threatens our ability to compete in a global economy, and our society badly needs comprehensive reform," he said. "The Senate should revisit this issue as quickly as possible."

waitnwatch
06-11-2007, 04:25 PM
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2007/06/09/H1B.TMP

Lobbying goes on for H-1B reforms
Tech executives still hope to revive immigration bill

Tom Abate, Chronicle Staff writer (tabate@sfchronicle.com)

High-tech business leaders hope to revive the stalled Senate bill on immigration reform that, they now say, would allow them to import more college graduates under the controversial H-1B visa program.

The bill, which would cover every aspect of immigration from undocumented farmworkers from Mexico to legally hired engineers from India, was sidetracked Thursday on a procedural vote that had little to do with high-tech issues.

Capitol Hill insiders say whether the big bill rises from the grave or remains buried will depend on the ability of President Bush to bring Senate Republicans back to the table on the divisive issues involving undocumented workers.

"We don't think it's dead," said Oracle lobbyist Robert Hoffman. "We hope to come together and find a path forward."

This new optimism from the high-tech lobby -- which had just days earlier criticized the omnibus bill -- stems in part from a deal struck late Thursday that sweetened the H-1B provisions.

According to Ralph Hellman, a lobbyist with the Information Technology Industry Council, the sweeteners came after a series of meetings Wednesday and Thursday involving Microsoft chief executive Steve Ballmer and six senators led by Republican Jon Kyl of Arizona.

Ballmer, who had been in Washington on other business, has publicly threatened to move more research and development work abroad if the tech industry doesn't get more H-1B help. His discussions with Kyl ended up making the main bill more tech-friendly, Hellmann said.

High-tech lobbyist Kara Calvert, who has been tracking the deal-making, said the main revisions to emerge after Ballmer's visit include:

-- More H-1B visas. The current base cap is 65,000, with 20,000 more slots for foreigners who get advanced degrees from U.S. universities. The new deal would increase the base cap to 115,000, add 40,000 H-1B visas for the foreign-born who get advanced degrees here, plus another 20,000 slots for persons who get advanced degrees from abroad in science, technology, engineering or math.

-- A five-year transition plan to help work through the backlog of H-1B visa holders waiting to get green cards before a new application system takes full effect.

But Calvert said none of the revisions has been added to the bill yet, and in any case, none of this will matter if the omnibus bill is not resuscitated.

Meanwhile, Ron Hira, a professor of public policy at the Rochester Institute of Technology, said importing large numbers of knowledge-workers depresses wages and reduces employment opportunities for Americans.

While program critics like Hira have far less lobbying clout on Capitol Hill than high-tech companies, they have found some bipartisan allies in the current Senate debate. Sens. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., and Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, have advanced proposals to give the Department of Labor more clout to investigate and monitor whether H-1B workers are pushing Americans out of jobs.

"This is recognition that there is something wrong with the H-1B program," said Hira, who says 15 of the top 20 users of H-1B visas are companies involved in moving high-tech work offshore, typically to India.

According to high-tech lobbyists, Durbin and Grassley remained outside the group of senators who tried to make the big bill more palatable to Ballmer. But in recognition of the interest in whether U.S. workers are being displaced, high-tech leaders say the latest incarnation of the main bill would include proposals from Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, that would be tougher than current law but not as tough as the Durbin-Grassley proposals.

All of this would be meaningless unless the Senate revives the big bill. But tech leaders believe if they can get this measure to the House, they'll get a friendly reception from Rep. Zoe Lofgren, D-San Jose, who chairs a key subcommittee on immigration.

yabadaba
06-11-2007, 04:47 PM
great find!!! maybe we can take a breath...not breathe easy.. but just take a breath.

msyedy
06-11-2007, 05:10 PM
great find!!! maybe we can take a breath...not breathe easy.. but just take a breath.

Why 5 year transition..............make it 2 - 3 years max we are only 1 million.

waitnwatch
06-11-2007, 05:27 PM
great find!!! maybe we can take a breath...not breathe easy.. but just take a breath.

............if you are not a consultant

vulcanfly
06-11-2007, 05:33 PM
http://money.cnn.com/2007/06/08/magazines/fsb/immigrant_universities.fsb/index.htm?cnn=yes

Is the U.S. winning back its competitive edge?
A new study finds that American universities are luring technology entrepreneurs from overseas, fueling a $52 billion startup boom.
By Elaine Pofeldt, FSB Magazine senior editor
June 11 2007: 8:39 AM EDT


(FSB Magazine) -- Maybe the U.S. isn't falling as far behind other nations in math and science education as business leaders fear. A new study suggests that American universities are luring more entrepreneurial talent from overseas than many think, fueling a boom in tech startups here.

More than half of the immigrant founders of tech and engineering firms launched in the U.S. between 1995 and 2005 came to the U.S. to further their education, and 53 percent earned their highest degrees in the U.S., according to the just-released research on 1,572 companies, conducted by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, a nonprofit in Kansas City that promotes entrepreneurship. The study was conducted by researchers at Duke University and the University of California at Berkeley. Only 1.6 percent entered this country with the sole goal of starting a business, according to the results.

The findings are significant because a quarter of technology and engineering companies launched in the U.S. between 1995 and 2005 had at least one foreign-born founder, according to the research. These enterprises generated $52 billion in sales and provided jobs to 450,000 workers in 2005.

"Our higher education system has historically attracted talented immigrants from around the world to the United States to study," says Vivek Wadhwa, the lead researcher and executive in residence at Duke University's Pratt School of Engineering. "The U.S. economy depends on these high rates of entrepreneurship and innovation to maintain its global edge."

Who in the world is entrepreneurial?
Among the company founders surveyed, 96 percent have bachelor's degrees and 74 percent have graduate or postgraduate degrees. "Our research confirms that advanced education in science, technology, engineering and math is correlated with high rates of entrepreneurship and innovation," says Wadhwa. No single school dominated in luring overseas talent.

Most of the immigrant entrepreneurs came from India, the U.K., China, Japan and Germany, either to study or to work for a U.S.-based corporation. They started a new business 13 years after immigrating, on average.

The majority of these startups were in tech hotbeds. The areas that attracted the greatest percentage of immigrant entrepreneurs were Silicon Valley (52 percent), New York City (43 percent) and Chicago (39 percent).

With countries from China to Panama becoming increasingly attractive to entrepreneurs, the U.S. still needs to do more to keep talented immigrants flowing into this country, say some business leaders. Heightened security since Sept. 11 has made it difficult for overseas innovators to move here, and many are setting up shop elsewhere, says Verne Harnish, who frequently does business internationally as the founder of Gazelles, an executive coaching firm for fast-growth companies in Ashburn, Va. "We're just not friendly anymore," he says.

The stalling of the immigration bill, which could have given 12 million undocumented immigrants a chance to secure legal status, makes it even more important to lure international business talent, Harnish says.

"Our population is getting old," he says. "For the sake of this country, we've got to get a bunch of young people here. There's not going to be anyone paying our Social Security and Medicare if we don't get this issue addressed."

Jaime
06-11-2007, 07:19 PM
Immigration reform bill includes stupidity, farce

By Charles Krauthammer

June 6, 2007

WASHINGTON — Beware legislative behemoths. Beware “comprehensive immigration reform.’’ Any bill that is 380 pages long is bound to have nooks and crannies reflecting private deals, quiet paybacks and ad hoc arrangements that you often don’t learn about until it’s too late.

The main provisions of the immigration reform monster are well known. But how many knew, before reading a recent Washington Post, that if Einstein were trying to get a green card, he would have to get in line with Argentine plumbers and Taiwanese accountants to qualify under the new “point system’’ that gives credit for such things as English proficiency and reliable work history? Good thing Albert was a patent office clerk, and that grooming isn’t part of the new point system.

Until now we’ve had a special category for highly skilled, world-renowned and indispensable talent. Great musicians, athletes and high-tech managers come in today under the EB-1 visa. This apparently is going to be abolished in the name of an idiotic egalitarianism.

I suspect this provision is a kind of apology for one of the few very good ideas in the bill — taking skill, education and English proficiency into account rather just family ties, and thus cutting back on a chain migration system in which the Yemeni laborer can bring over an entire clan while the engineers and teachers desperate to get here languish in the old country.

The price for this lurch into rationality appears to be the abolition of the VIP fast track, which constitutes less than 2 percent of total immigration and, from the point of view of the national interest, is the most valuable. This staggeringly stupid idea is reason alone to vote against the immigration bill.

Beyond stupidity, the bill offers farce. My favorite episode is the back-taxes caper. John McCain has been going around telling everyone that in order to be legalized, illegal immigrants will, among other things, have to pay back taxes. Such are the stern requirements on the “path to citizenship.’’

Problem is, McCain then discovered that back taxes were not in the bill. The Homeland Security Department had argued that collecting on money paid under the table — usually in cash, often with no receipts — is pretty much impossible. Indeed, the cost of calculating and collecting the money would probably exceed the proceeds.

Now, nonpayment is not the kind of thing you want to defend when trying to sell immigration reform to citizens who do pay their taxes — back and otherwise. So McCain proposed an amendment to restore the back-taxes provision. A somewhat sheepish Senate approved this sop — unanimously.

But the campaign for legalization does not stop at stupidity and farce. It adds mendacity as well. Such as the front-page story in a recent New York Times claiming that “a large majority of Americans want to change the immigration laws to allow illegal immigrants to gain legal status.’’

Sounds unbelievable. And it is. A Rasmussen poll had shown that 72 percent of Americans thought border enforcement and reducing illegal immigration to be very important. Only 29 percent thought legalization to be very important. Indeed, when a different question in the Times poll — one that did not make the front page — asked respondents if they wanted to see illegal immigrants prosecuted and deported, 69 percent said yes.

I looked for the poll question that justified the pro-legalization claim. It was question 61. Just as I suspected, it was perfectly tendentious. It gave the respondent two options: (a) allow illegal immigrants to apply for legalization (itself a misleading characterization because the current bill grants instant legal status to all non-criminals), or (b) deport them.

Surprise. Sixty-two percent said (a). That’s like asking about abortion: Do you favor (a) legalization or (b) capital punishment for doctor and mother? There is of course a third alternative: what we’ve been living with for the last 20 years — a certain tolerance of illegal immigrants that allows 12 million to stay and work but denies them most of the privileges and government payouts reserved for legal citizens, and thus acts as at least a mild disincentive to even more massive illegal immigration.

Indeed, unless the immigration bill is fixed, that alternative is what the country will in essence choose when the bill fails.

My view is that the current bill could be fixed with a very strong border control provision. But even then, let’s make sure we know what’s really in the bill and not distort what the American people are really demanding, which is border control first.

And keep Einstein on the fast track.

Charles Krauthammer is a columnist for The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, DC 20071. Send e-mail to letters@charleskrauthammer.com.

prinive
06-12-2007, 08:51 AM
http://www.ibnlive.com/news/world/06_2007/bush-gives-indian-immigrants-hope-42746.html


Washington: All is not lost - that's the word from US President George Bush on the immigration issue. He's now looking to build a consensus with Republican senators on the contentious immigration bill that offered little of substance to the thousands of Indians in the US aspiring to immigrate to America.


But even some action on this critical issue is better than none. So, India-American lobby groups in Washington DC say they're still disappointed with the Senate's decision to kill the legislation.


With a 45-50 vote against the bill, the Senate killed the legislation last week.


But while the 700-page bill may be dead for the moment, Indian-American groups in Washington DC say they will continue to lobby lawmakers on Capitol Hill to make sure the legislation does not pass in its current form.


That's because of a slim possibility that the bill may make it back to the senate floor sometime later this year.


Anurag Varma, a DC-based lawyer, represents Immigration Voice. He says two important changes are high on the group's agenda.

An increase in the Green Card quota for skilled immigrants and elimination of country quotas from employment based immigration.


"Right now, seven percent is the cap on the number of total GCs that are available per country. Only four countries ever reach that cap and those are the counties that contribute the maximum high skilled talent to the US. And they are India, China, Mexico and Philippines,” he says.


But Varma concedes that securing a change on Capitol Hill will not be easy and so groups like Immigration Voice are trying mobilise the community to lobby with the lawmakers and help out an estimated half-a-million Indian-Americans who as they say are stuck in the immigration quagmire.

nat23
06-12-2007, 02:43 PM
By JULIE HIRSCHFELD DAVIS, Associated Press Writer

WASHINGTON - President Bush pressed divided Republicans on Tuesday to support him on immigration overhaul, saying "status quo is unacceptable."

The president, in a rare visit to the Capitol, told reporters after a luncheon with the Senate GOP membership that he recognized that immigration was an emotional issue and that many do not agree with him. Still, he said, "Now is the time to get it done."

Bush mounted a personal effort to salvage his derailed immigration bill, as key lawmakers reached for a deal that could quickly revive the measure. He needs to change enough minds among GOP senators to push through a top domestic priority.

The measure, which legalizes up to 12 million unlawful immigrants and tightens border security, stalled last week in the face of broad Republican opposition.

This is a breaking news update. Check back soon for further information.

nat23
06-12-2007, 03:02 PM
WASHINGTON (CNN) — After lunching with Republican senators Tuesday, President Bush said “now is the time” to pass a comprehensive immigration bill, and he urged Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to make that happen.

The bill has been stalled in Congress since Thursday night, when the Democratic-controlled Senate voted to halt debate, thereby preventing the bill onto the floor for a vote.

“Some members in there (the lunch room) believe we need to move a comprehensive bill, some don’t,” Bush told reporters in a Capitol hallway. “I understand that. It’s a highly emotional issue.

“But those of us standing here believe now is time to move to a comprehensive bill that enforces borders and has good workplace enforcement, that doesn’t grant automatic citizenship, that addresses this problem in a comprehensive way.

“I believe without the bill, it’ll be harder to enforce our borders.”

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky., said there was “good give and take” at the meeting, and sounded optimistic about the bill’s chances. However, many senators remained against the measure, he told the media after Bush left the microphone.

“We didn’t expect anybody to stand up and holler that they had a epiphany,” McConnell added. “I do believe this bill is about 85 percent through, to the finish line.”

Sen. Trent Lott, R-Mississippi, the minority whip, said, “The president made it clear to us that he won’t sign just any bill. … There are still problems remaining with it, and he wants to work with us to get this job done.”

nat23
06-12-2007, 04:47 PM
Republican Senate leaders presented an upbeat report of their meeting with President Bush on comprehensive immigration reform this afternoon, but gave no indication of any deals made that might persuade more members of their party to back a compromise bill.

"The details of how we get from where we are now to the finish line is not something I'm prepared to discuss today," said Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, addressing reporters outside the Senate chamber.

Bush seemed to second McConnell's earlier criticism that Majority Leader Harry Reid prematurely pulled the bill off the floor after it failed a test vote for debate last week.

"I would hope that the Senate majority leader has that same desire to move the bill that I do, and these senators do, because now is the time to get it done," said the president, flanked by McConnell, Minority Whip Trent Lott, and border state Sens. Jon Kyl (Ariz.) and Kay Bailey Hutchison (Texas). "The status quo is unacceptable."

Later, in a separate news conference, Reid retorted that he could only bring the bill back to the floor when Senate Republicans got "their own act together." Repeating a warning made in a letter he and other Democratic leaders sent to the president yesterday, Reid said, "Fourteen percent of Republicans supporting this bill won't do the trick."

The "grand bargain" proposal is the result of a bipartisan compromise, with Republicans including John McCain and Democrats including Edward Kennedy leading the charge. While some left-wing and immigrants' rights groups oppose some aspects of the proposal, the loudest antagonism has come from the border-enforcement right, which has denounced any path to citizenship for illegals as amnesty.

But Bush and the bipartisan backers of the bill insist that no new legislation is also tantamount to amnesty. Bush is particularly determined to make good on his election-year promise of immigration reform; as a former governor of Texas and something of a pioneer on the Hispanic vote among Republicans, the issue is one he seems to identify with on a personal level.

The president attended the GOP lunch for the first time in five years, attracting a larger than usual horde of cameras and reporters.

Of Bush, Lott said, "He made it clear to me and others that he doesn't want just any bill, a bad bill, but he thinks this is an issue that needs to be addressed."

"The president was very emotional in describing his feeling of the importance of doing this," McConnell added. "I don't think there was anybody in the room who was not impressed by the strength of his conviction."

Bush also heard from senators who support a proposal by Georgia Sens. Saxby Chambliss and Johnny Isakson for a border security supplemental bill that could grease the wheels for the immigration bill.

Bush vowed that the "White House will stay engaged" on the issue. But as Reid has noted, with most Democrats having voted to send the bill through, the onus is on the GOP's leaders to muster up at least 15 converts on the proposal. More specifically, those Republicans will have to be convinced that pushing through an imperfect reform bill is worth the ire of an impassioned base.

-JANE ROH, with Brian Friel from CongressDaily contributing

MrWaitingGC
06-12-2007, 05:02 PM
Economic times reports this:

http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/News/News_By_Industry/Services/Travel/Visa_Power/NRIs_push_for_the_best_as_Bush_vows_to_revive_bill/articleshow/msid-2116982,curpg-1.cms

rick_rajvanshi
06-12-2007, 09:17 PM
House Committee Explores Effect
Of Outsourcing on the Economy
By JOHN MCCARY
June 12, 2007 6:12 p.m.

WASHINGTON -- Even as lawmakers are set to unveil legislation Wednesday targeting China for its alleged unfair currency practices, a House hearing heard testimony that a punitive approach isn't the answer to the U.S. quest to stay competitive.

The House Committee on Science and Technology held a hearing Tuesday to explore how the outflow of high-tech jobs to foreign countries from the U.S. is impacting the economy. "Almost on a daily basis, we read announcements that more high-tech jobs are being offshored to developing countries," said committee chairman Rep. Bart Gordon (D., Tenn.).

On Wednesday, a bipartisan group of senators is due to unveil a bill that would take aim at China's failure to allow the yuan to appreciate faster against the dollar -- a situation that critics allege make Chinese imports unfairly cheap.

The bill, which is backed by Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D., Mont.) and ranking member Chuck Grassley (R., Iowa), is one of several targeting China's alleged unfair trading practices and pending in Congress.

Witnesses called to testify Tuesday warned that punishing China isn't the answer. "Protectionism is a loser's game," said Alan Blinder, an economics professor at Princeton University.

Some blamed the U.S. education system. Ranking member Ralph Hall (R., Tex.), noted that China graduated 219,600 engineers last year, representing 39% of all bachelor's degrees in that country. In contrast, the U.S. graduated 59,500 engineers, or 5% of all bachelor's degrees, he said.

Ralph Gomory, a former director of research at IBM Corp., said the "interests of countries and companies have diverged," with countries continuing to look to companies to contribute jobs and growth to the economy, but companies now looking overseas to make profits.

How to stem the continued outflow of jobs? Some of the suggestions offered up in Tuesday's testimony included reducing the regulatory and tax burden on high-tech companies, providing incentives for students to get engineering and science degrees and providing assistance and retraining to workers who lose jobs to outsourcing.

Martin Baily, a senior fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics, urged the U.S. to ease up on visa restrictions tightened in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

"We have to allow foreign-born scientists and engineers to come to the U.S. There are scientists and technologists that want to come to the United States, want to become Americans, want to create American jobs," he said. But "they get treated as guilty and have to prove their innocence."

Write to John McCary at john.mccary@wsj.com

nat23
06-13-2007, 09:39 AM
Following President Bush's rare visit to Capitol Hill yesterday, there are indications that a bipartisan group of senators could move to revive the stalled immigration legislation as early as this month. The Chicago Tribune reports this morning "the 10 senators who drafted the original 'grand bargain' immigration bill are meeting" to find a way out of the impasse, and "GOP aides predicted the bipartisan group will announce a deal as soon as Wednesday." The deal "likely would include proposals to raise the bar for security 'triggers' that must be achieved before changes go into effect, restrict provisions that allow for chain migration of extended family members and counteract other approved amendments the bill's supporters call 'deal breakers.'" The Los Angeles Times notes GOP Sen. Mel Martinez "and other senators involved in the talks said they were 'very close' to reaching an agreement on amendments that would permit the bill to return to the Senate floor in about two weeks." The Wall Street Journal and USA Today, under the headline "Lawmakers Move To Revive Immigration Bill," run similar reports this morning.

During their meeting yesterday, the President and the GOP caucus also discussed possible changes to the bill, intended to make it more palatable to the GOP base. The CBS Evening News reported that "one possibility" under consideration is to "let governors from border states determine whether the borders are really secure before the 12 million illegal immigrants can move towards citizenship. Another option: Congress could set aside money in advance for border security so the American people know it's really there." Fox News' Special Report, meanwhile, notes "one idea suggested at the lunch meeting is for the president to put forward an emergency supplemental funding request for border security like the administration has done to fund the war. The idea being that the Administration could then show senators specifically that the security measures will be funded." The Hill reports, however, that "Bush made no commitments as to whether he would propose an emergency supplemental bill." The New York Times also reports that Michael Chertoff, secretary of homeland security, said yesterday that "the administration was willing to consider a number of proposed Republican amendments, including one that would require illegal immigrants to 'touch back' in their home countries (or some other country) to apply for legal status."

Reid: GOP Must Produce 25 Votes Serious obstacles still remain on the bill's path. ABC World News reported Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said yesterday "he's not going to bring the immigration reform bill back on the floor of the Senate for a vote unless 25 Republican senators are committed to voting for it." McClatchy said Reid "signaled a hard line and said he must be convinced that Republicans 'have their own act together' before he brings the bill back up for a debate. ... 'The question is, do the Republicans support their president's immigration bill?' Reid asked. 'At this stage, it's a resounding no.'" The New York Times also notes Reid's remarks.

Media: Bush Failed Despite the possible revival of the immigration deal, a number of media reports (particularly on TV) are portraying Bush's visit to Capitol Hill as failure. Those stories view the President's apparent inability to change the minds of GOP senators (and to do so yesterday, during their lunch meeting) as a reflection of his diminished popularity. NBC Nightly News said Bush "went to the Capitol to throw the power of his office behind" the immigration measure, and "he might have learned something in the process about the power remaining in his presidency." NBC added, "Aides say the President during this meeting with Republican senators went out of his way to say he wasn't trying to twist any arms. Tonight it's also clear he may not have changed any minds." David Gergen, former presidential advisor, was shown saying, "George W. Bush has reached the point where he's neither loved nor feared by people in his own party. And that leaves him in a very weakened state." ABC World News reported, "Yesterday, the President seemed confident he could do that. Telling reporters, 'I'll see you at the bill signing.' But today, he seemed like it was a different story. ... It seems this bill may just be dead." CNN's Situation Room said passing the legislation is "going to be an extremely uphill battle" and "may be a task that is insurmountable for a president who's clout is shrinking." The Washington Post's Dana Milbank and the AP reach similar conclusions.

The Washington Post, meanwhile, notes it was "the first time in five years that Bush had come to the Capitol for the Republican senators' weekly policy luncheon. He and senior administration officials painted the meeting -- coming five days after the collapse on the Senate floor of the tenuous compromise on immigration -- as a rescue session. ... The last time Bush attended a Tuesday policy lunch, another domestic priority was in deep trouble. His signature No Child Left Behind education measure was under assault by conservatives, who were demanding the inclusion of a provision to allow states to opt out of its strictures on testing and curriculum."

Poll Favors "Path To Citizenship" The Los Angeles Times reports, "A strong majority of Americans -- including nearly two-thirds of Republicans -- favor allowing illegal immigrants to become citizens if they pay fines, learn English and meet other requirements, a new Los Angeles Times/Bloomberg poll has found." That is "a striking show of support for the central tenet of an immigration overhaul bill that has stalled in the Senate amid conservative opposition."

http://www.usnews.com/usnews/politics/bulletin/bulletin_070613.htm

Polk1848
06-13-2007, 12:24 PM
My run for the fake border (http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/commentary/la-oe-stein1jun01,1,2143550.column) For about $20, Mexico's Parque EcoAlberto allows you to experience the journey taken by real border crossers, Joel Stein (jstein@latimescolumnists.com), June 1, 2007


So what's the point of the article? "Selfish people that protect their money with guns..." ? Property rights are one of the foundations that made the society worth coming to.

GreeNever
06-13-2007, 12:26 PM
Folks! MSNBC is organizing a gut check on the immigration issue (though this appears to be on issues related to illegal immigration). It's a message board inviting opinions on immigration with an expert panel set to reply to the meesages posted. Eventually, messages will be short-listed for publishing. We may be able to make an opportunity out of this.

Link: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/18826755/

Polk1848
06-13-2007, 12:34 PM
[QUOTE=Macaca]Immigration's lost voices (http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/commentary/la-oe-castaneda13jun13,1,6981650.story) By Jorge G. Castaneda, June 13, 2007

JORGE G. CASTANEDA is a former foreign minister of Mexico and a professor of politics and Latin American studies at New York University.

[FONT="Microsoft Sans Serif"]Mexico City — THE COLLAPSE of the bipartisan immigration deal in the Senate last week sends a terrible message. As flawed as some considered the bill to be, it was certainly an improvement over the status quo for some very interested parties: the roughly 12 million unauthorized immigrants in the U.S. and the roughly 500,000 a year who will continue to go north for at least the next 10 years.

Their point of view — which is not the same as that of Latino community leaders in the United States or of business, labor or the Catholic Church — has not been as present in the debate as one could hope. Why? In part because it's unclear who is supposed to speak for them. Ideally it would be the governments of their countries — Mexico, El Salvador, Ecuador, Peru, the Dominican Republic — but for mystifying reasons, those countries seem to prefer silence to advocacy.

This debate is about American law. This is to be decided by America, not foreign nationals.



The Senate package was a sum of trade-offs. Some were new: border security and "triggers" (in which parts of the deal would only begin once the border was "secured") in exchange for the equivalent of amnesty, a path to citizenship for some in exchange for no path for others, a point system for future immigration in exchange for a significant increase in overall green card numbers.

Other parts of the deal were essentially the same as those under discussion since 2001, when I was Mexico's foreign minister. At that time, I gave a speech using the phrase "the whole enchilada." That meant essentially that there could be no conceivable immigration agreement between Mexico and the U.S., and no conceivable immigration reform within the U.S., that did not address two fundamental issues. The first was, of course, the A-question (involving amnesty for the then-9 million undocumented immigrants in the United States). The second was the "TWP question" (for Temporary Worker Program): how to adapt legality to reality, instead of the other way around, and ensure that legal entries going forward would be more numerous than illegal ones.

The American people are being pushed by the Mexicans into a immagration moratorium which will hurt all the other people seeking immigration who actually have something to offer the nation besides street gangs and car wash attendants.






Perhaps this is the way legislative bodies work, in the U.S. and everywhere, now and always. Perhaps such partisanship is unavoidable in Congress. But outside the legislative chambers, where interest groups operate — that's where statesmanship should have come into play. Interested parties from the right and the left should have been working ceaselessly to make it clear that their preferred course was only possible along with the other side's preferred course, and that this imperfect solution was better than the status quo ante. But that didn't happen.

The perfect solution is the enforcement of current laws and the jailing of employers who violate that law. Nowhere in your post is there an inkling of a crumb of concern for this question: How will this effect the AMERICAN people?


One argument that was not made strongly enough — but that should have been made by American foreign policy experts as well as by governments such as Mexico's — was the geopolitical case. Immigration is a domestic issue, of course, but it has many international ramifications.

Those countries need to get their own houses in order.

One of these is that it can change the way Latin America views Washington, and as a result, it can help Washington counter the offensive of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez in the region. Very few things could make as much of a difference in Mexico, Ecuador, Peru, Colombia and the Caribbean as a generous, broad-minded and workable reform of immigration. It would show that the United States really wants to mend fences (rather than simply erect them).

We don't care about those nations before our own people; our first responsibility is to the American people. When our homeless and unemployed and impoverished are cared for then we can look to charity for others. Charity begins at home. Those nations have resources, but the corrupt governments there make a quality of life impossible for their people. Now you want to import that poverty here: we don't want it and this is our country. Sorry.


For many senators, this is an irrelevant factor; they believe that immigration is a domestic matter and that the needs and desires of other countries should not be taken into account. But this is shortsighted. These are not the best of times for the United States in Latin America; allowing relations to deteriorate still further means playing directly into the Venezuelan president's hands. That, perhaps, is something worth pondering.

The only thing to ponder is why we are allowing him to sell oil here at all.

sam_hoosier
06-13-2007, 12:35 PM
http://www.cnn.com/2007/US/06/12/Dobbs.June13/index.html

"Third, the government should fund, equip and hire the people necessary to man the Citizenship and Immigration Services. To do so will ensure that the agency is capable of fully executing and administering lawful immigration into the United States and eliminating the shameful backlog of millions of people who are seeking legal entry into this country."

Very surprising, coming from Lou Dobbs :p

yabadaba
06-13-2007, 12:40 PM
yo polky from alipac or numbersusa..wherever u have come from. this is a news thread. we just copy and paste immigration based news. these are not our comments/our references. we are also polite enough not to discuss the news items on this thread. If you have a problem with the article, send an email to the person who wrote it.

sanju
06-13-2007, 12:50 PM
Howdy,

Take a chill pill. This is a news article and not an opinion of someone on this forum. Open your eyes, wash them with cold water, read properly before responding, stop sounding arrogant and put your brains ahead of your a$$. Try to act smart, I know it will be difficult for you, just try at least, it will take a lot of time & effort, but it may work a few times.

And, if you really care, write to the author of the article, rather than attempting to scare law abiding people on this forum. Stop pretending that you care for "AMERICAN LAW" because if you do, you would support people on this forum. And one more thing, it is high time you stop this arrogance because it doesn't help anybody.



This debate is about American law. This is to be decided by America, not foreign nationals.





The American people are being pushed by the Mexicans into a immagration moratorium which will hurt all the other people seeking immigration who actually have something to offer the nation besides street gangs and car wash attendants.







The perfect solution is the enforcement of current laws and the jailing of employers who violate that law. Nowhere in your post is there an inkling of a crumb of concern for this question: How will this effect the AMERICAN people?




Those countries need to get their own houses in order.



We don't care about those nations before our own people; our first responsibility is to the American people. When our homeless and unemployed and impoverished are cared for then we can look to charity for others. Charity begins at home. Those nations have resources, but the corrupt governments there make a quality of life impossible for their people. Now you want to import that poverty here: we don't want it and this is our country. Sorry.




The only thing to ponder is why we are allowing him to sell oil here at all.

breddy2000
06-13-2007, 01:36 PM
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/chronicle/archive/2007/06/13/MNG88QE8HV1.DTL&type=politics

asanghi
06-13-2007, 02:07 PM
Could we use this opportunity in NY to push our cause?

http://www.samachar.com/showurl.php?rurl=http://sify.com/news/fullstory.php?id=14471500&news=Hillary%20to%20interact%20with%20IIT%20alumni %20next%20month&pubDate=Wed%2C+13+Jun+2007+22%3A02%3A28+GMT&keyword=sifynews_home

starscream
06-13-2007, 04:41 PM
MSNBC has opned up a message board for Employment Based (EB) Skilled Immigration Applicants
http://boards.msn.com/MSNBCboards/board.aspx?BoardID=1042 . Go to the topic Employment Based (EB) Skilled Immigration Applicants

PLease post your messages on the board about EB backlog, H1B and CIR issues. Only 5 messages have been posted

Karthikthiru
06-13-2007, 06:10 PM
Nice article that came today in BusinessWeek

http://www.businessweek.com/smallbiz/content/jun2007/sb20070608_805263.htm?chan=top+news_top+news+index _small+business


Karthik

dilvahabilyeha
06-13-2007, 07:26 PM
Please ask your question in MSNBC! Hope you are lucky, they choose your question!

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/18826755/

Polk1848
06-13-2007, 08:26 PM
Howdy,

Take a chill pill. This is a news article and not an opinion of someone on this forum. Open your eyes, wash them with cold water, read properly before responding, stop sounding arrogant and put your brains ahead of you ass. Try to act smart, I know it will be difficult for you, just try at least, it will take a lot of time & effort, but it may work a few times.

And, if you really care, write to the author of the article, rather than attempting to scare law abiding people on this forum. Stop pretending that you care for "AMERICAN LAW" because if you do, you would support people on this forum. And one more thing, it is high time you stop this arrogance because it doesn't help anybody.

I married a legal immigrant and have a child with her and I do write to the people who write this crap. You don't discuss the articles here? Isn't that the point in a forum? As if you're tone wasn't arrogant? Am I arrogant? No more than the strident marchers in LA stepping on my flag and humping the air at the camera. It's arrogant Americans like me that already take in more legal immigration than the rest of the world combined. Most of us "arrogant Americans" have voiced the opinion that it's a slap in the face to people struggling to follow the rules to present this amnesty. Instead of chastizing and insulting me for posting on what apeared to be a politcal forum, you might get with some of the Americans dressing down the amnesty wave before it turns the country into another Brazil. Why do you want to come here? because arrogant people like me have built a great society over many generations. If I get the same arrogance from this forum as I get from La Raza it will be duly noted.

You're a very insulting person. I've bore arms for this country, hold two degrees, have held three professional licenses, and served nine years in inner city schools. If you want to insult me I think you should show the manly courage to do it to my face while you ask to live on the land my forefathers have spilled blood for. Do you people have a fucking clue what you're getting when you come here and talk to us like this? We've built this country with our blood and lives for generations. Show some fucking respect or go back to the shitholes you came from.

stuckinmuck
06-13-2007, 08:46 PM
Guys, let's be civil in our responses to each other. I understand we've been heckled by anti-immigrants earlier and have been frustrated by the unfair pandering to illegals. But we cannot afford to lose our dignity by responding in an arrogant and rude way. Remember, we have done everything right until now by abiding by the laws, assimilating into this wonderful country and working towards a common goal. Why would we want to undo the spirit of all this good work by a few rude words? It doesn't help anyone. Thank you for understanding.

dilvahabilyeha
06-13-2007, 08:50 PM
July Visa bulletin!

All countries, all categories, CURRENT NOW ENJOY

http://travel.state.gov/visa/frvi/bulletin/bulletin_3258.html

Polk1848
06-13-2007, 09:59 PM
Immigration crackdown tears families apart (http://www.reuters.com/article/domesticNews/idUSN1334186120070613) By Andrea Hopkins, Wed Jun 13, 2007

[/FONT]


http://www.youtube.com/profile?user=AmericanResolve

raju123
06-14-2007, 08:34 AM
I posted following question. I urge every one to post question. It is right place to vent out your frustration.

Two channels of legal immigration; Employment based and Family based have per country quota of 7% led to a huge backlog with Countries such as India, China, Philippines etc. Per-country quota was introduced to promote diversity. Now in new Comprehensive Immigration Reform bill, 12 millions illegal will not have per-country quota for getting green Card. How do you justify House proposal? Either it should have same per-country quota for all who want green card and citizenship or remove per-country cap to Family and Employment based green card. Thanks



Please ask your question in MSNBC! Hope you are lucky, they choose your question!

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/18826755/

johnwright03
06-14-2007, 09:15 AM
Hi,
I have applied for my PERM labor and have not got any approval on that...I am checking to see if the Concurrent Filing of I-140 and I-485 is still available....???

and also how many days or months does anyone think this PD will remain current..???

Any suggestions will be appreciated...!!!
Edit/Delete Message

We_will_get_GC
06-15-2007, 08:59 AM
I understand you take great pains to reproduce these news items, but somehow these long articles are not very readabel (easy to eyes). I dont know why, your fonts, colors could be better or consistent with other posts. And when you are you are using different colors in one posts, in your signature could you please have legends.

My 2 cents. Ignore them if you didnt like them.

Immigration Bill Has New Life In Senate (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/06/14/AR2007061400919.html?hpid=topnews) Parties Compromise On Amendments, By Jonathan Weisman (http://projects.washingtonpost.com/staff/email/jonathan+weisman/), Washington Post Staff Writer, Friday, June 15, 2007

Senate leaders, under pressure from pro-immigration groups and facing a determined push by President Bush, agreed last night to bring a controversial overhaul of the nation's immigration laws back to the Senate floor as early as next week.

The bipartisan negotiators working on the immigration bill whittled hundreds of amendments down to a package of 11 amendments from Republicans and another 11 from Democrats and then presented their compromise to Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.). Senate Minority Whip Trent Lott (Miss.) indicated earlier that he could produce enough GOP votes to clear the 60-vote threshold to get the bill back to the floor and push it to a final vote.

With Reid's demands satisfied, he and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) issued a terse statement: "We met this evening with several of the Senators involved in the immigration bill negotiations. Based on that discussion, the immigration bill will return to the Senate floor."

Members of both parties cautioned that passage is still anything but certain.

"I'm sure senators on both sides of the aisle are being pounded by these talk-radio people who don't even know what's in the bill," Lott said. He added that the "leadership will have to be prepared to do what needs to be done."

The breakthrough was a clear victory for Bush, whose visit to Capitol Hill on Tuesday appeared to come too late to resurrect a measure that had been pulled from the Senate floor five days earlier.

"We are encouraged by the announcement from Senate leaders that comprehensive immigration reform will be brought back up for consideration," said White House spokesman Scott Stanzel. "We look forward to working with senators as the process moves forward."

Administration officials worked hard to mobilize business groups and immigrant rights organizations to counter a furious response from the bill's opponents.

Spanish-language radio personality Eddie "Piolin" Sotelo delivered to the Senate yesterday more than 1 million letters from U.S. citizens and legal residents supporting the measure, and Roman Catholic leaders launched a push to revive the bill.

For his part, Bush sought to reassure conservatives that the controversial bill would provide resources for more effective border control, endorsing a new plan to devote $4.4 billion in fees raised by the legislation to bolstering border surveillance and preventing illegal immigrants from being hired in workplaces.

"We're going to show the American people that the promises in this bill will be kept," Bush told members of the Associated Builders and Contractors who gathered for a conference downtown.

By endorsing the plan, proposed by Sens. Lindsey O. Graham (R-S.C.) and Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.), the president was sending another signal to conservatives to rethink their opposition to the comprehensive immigration measure.

"That $4 billion is a tremendous help," said Sen. Mel Martinez (R-Fla.), one of the bill's negotiators and the chairman of the Republican National Committee. "It gives people confidence that security really will be there."

Negotiations on the bill stretched over five months, and the floor debate has already consumed two weeks of a packed Senate schedule. The bill would link new border controls and a crackdown on employers who hire illegal immigrants with provisions to grant legal status to the 12 million illegal immigrants already in the country, to clear the backlog of hundreds of thousands of immigration applications, and to shift the emphasis of future immigration from family ties to job skills and higher education levels.

Reid has absorbed withering criticism for his decision to yank the bill from the floor last week after a vote to cut off debate received just 45 votes, well short of the 60 needed to move to a vote on final passage. But he said he could not continue to push the legislation if opponents persisted in offering amendment after amendment to, in effect, filibuster the bill.

With a finite list of amendments in hand, Reid promised last night to bring the bill back after the Senate completes work on an energy bill, probably by next Thursday.

Senate opponents showed no sign of acquiescing to the deal. "I appreciate the effort to fund border security, but there's simply no reason why we should be forced to tie amnesty to it," Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) said of the president's pledge.

Sen. Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.), a bill negotiator who has edged away from it, said he, too, wants to "decouple" funding for border security from the broader issues of immigration, saying Bush should send up a separate emergency spending bill before the full package comes back to the floor.

But the bill's Republican supporters in the Senate said they are confident that they will win final passage. The measure, however, still has a steep road ahead. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) has said she is committed to move on an immigration plan next month if the Senate bill passes. But she has made it clear that Bush would have to deliver at least 70 GOP votes to win passage for legislation that is sure to split the Democratic caucus.

House Republicans showed no sign of tempering their opposition yesterday, even after senators backed the immediate infusion of funds for border security.

"Only in Washington would people believe that throwing money at the problem is going to solve it," said Rep. Brian P. Bilbray (R-Calif.), who is leading the opposition. "This is a blatant attempt by senators to extort votes so they can fast-track an amnesty plan."

svgupta
06-18-2007, 02:34 PM
Iv

nat23
06-18-2007, 04:36 PM
Kent Hoover Washington Bureau Chief
Printable Version Email Story

Despite the Senate's failure to act on sweeping immigration legislation, the technology industry still sees comprehensive reform as the best way to get more H-1B visas for foreign engineers and computer programmers, and to reduce the backlog for green cards.

Negotiations were under way to address these issues when the Senate -- at least temporarily -- dropped consideration of its immigration bill because of disagreements over how many amendments should be considered.
"We were actually heartened by the progress made," said James Ratchford, a spokesman for the Information Technology Industry Council. "We're more confident now it would be part of a comprehensive bill."

Demand for H-1B visas, which allow highly skilled foreigners to work in the United States for six years, dramatically exceeds supply. The federal government received 150,000 petitions for fiscal 2008's allotment of 65,000 H-1B visas on the first day it accepted applications.

This visa shortage hurts companies like Google Inc., where H-1B visa holders account for 8 percent of its U.S. work force, and helped lead the development of Google News and orkut, Google's social networking site.

"Each and every day we find ourselves unable to pursue highly qualified candidates because there are not enough H-1B visas," said Laszlo Bock, vice president of people operations for Mountain View, Calif.-based Google.

The original version of the Senate immigration bill would have raised the annual cap on H-1B visas to 115,000, gradually increasing up to 180,000 a year if needed. But the bill failed to include exemptions, passed by the Senate last year, for foreigners with advanced degrees.

An amendment restoring these exemptions, and addressing other alleged flaws in the bill's H-1B visa provisions, was pending when the Senate stopped work on the legislation.

Five-year wait for green cards
The amendment also calls for an employer-sponsored pool of green cards. The original bill would have ended employer sponsorship of individuals for green cards, which enable foreigners to live permanently in the United States.

Employers want to retain the ability to sponsor specific individuals for green cards and reduce the huge backlog of green card applications.Ê

Some employees at Redwood Shores, Calif.-based Oracle Corp. have waited more than five years for their green cards, said Robert Hoffman, Oracle's vice president for government and public affairs.

"That's too long for some of the most talented people in our country," Hoffman said.

Many of these foreigners give up, Google's Bock said, "and either move home or seek employment in more welcoming countries -- countries that are direct economic competitors to the United States."

Visas used for cheap labor?

The chances for business-friendly changes in the H-1B visa and green card systems might be better if they were considered separately from comprehensive immigration reform, which faces fierce opposition because it would allow illegal immigrants to become U.S. citizens if they pay fines and meet certain conditions.

"The debate is too much from our perspective about the A word -- amnesty," ITIC's Ratchford said. "We want it to be about the I word -- innovation."

Not everyone, however, agrees that expanding the number of H-1B visas is a good idea. Critics contend companies use the visas to hire foreigners who will work for less money than Americans. John Mianno, founder of the Programmers Guild, said his analysis of government data found that H-1B visa holders make $12,000 a year less than what American workers in the same occupation and location make.

Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, and Sen. Richard Durbin, D-Ill., have asked nine foreign-based companies that use nearly 20,000 H-1B visas to provide more details about their work force. One of those companies, Patni Computer Systems, recently agreed to pay $2.4 million to 607 H-1B workers that the Department of Labor concluded were underpaid.

Other studies, including one by the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, have found little evidence that H-1B visas depress tech industry wages. Industry lobbyists point to low unemployment rates in high-tech fields as evidence that foreigners are filling positions that otherwise would remain vacant.

"To me, high-skilled immigration is a no brainer -- it benefits our economy in so many ways," said Dan Griswold, director of trade policy studies for the Cato Institute, a libertarian think tank in Washington, D.C. "Where would Silicon Valley be without high-skilled immigrants?"

nat23
06-18-2007, 04:40 PM
Kennedy says immigration reform critical to national security
By Associated Press
Monday, June 18, 2007 - Updated: 02:38 PM EST

BOSTON - U.S. Senator Edward Kennedy said Monday that failing to pass immigration reforms would push illegal immigrants into isolation and create breeding grounds for homegrown terrorists.

Kennedy pointed to several European countries where he said alienation and immigration problems has led to terrorist acts.

"Just look what happened in Great Britain, with the isolation of the communities," Kennedy said at a meeting of the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce. "Look what has happened in France. Look what has happened in Germany. Look where the cells are in terms of al-Qaida. They’re all in different communities, which failed to assimilate individuals."

The Massachusetts Democrat is a leading proponent, along with President Bush, of legislation that would grant millions of illegal immigrants lawful status, while tightening border security and creating new measures for weeding illegal workers off of job sites. The legislation has stalled in Congress amid criticism _ especially from conservatives _ that it gives lawbreakers amnesty.

But Kennedy said passing such legislation was critical to the country’s national security, among other arguments.

"Why is it that virtually no Muslims in India are members of al-Qaida. Has anybody asked that question?," Kennedy asked. "It’s because they all feel they’re included."

johnwright03
06-18-2007, 11:10 PM
Macaca..!!
I feel like you are overloading the thread with your posts....What are you trying to achieve posting all that information..??? Does anyone even care to read all that...???? :confused:

caydee
06-18-2007, 11:28 PM
Macaca..!!
I feel like you are overloading the thread with your posts....What are you trying to achieve posting all that information..??? Does anyone even care to read all that...???? :confused:

Yep, I appreciate Macaca's efforts!!! His highlighted sentences are good pointers. There are numerous articles, but to choose from them and deciding on an action plan (usually writing to the author) is tough. Instead of spending time googling, I just read Macaca's posts and blog/email the author. Am just trying to spread the word and I am sure there are 000's of IV supporters doing the same.

Thanks Macaca!!!

brb2
06-18-2007, 11:46 PM
Yes, it is read with interest.
What may I ask is your objection to this thread when there are over 40 other threads here!
Macaca..!!
I feel like you are overloading the thread with your posts....What are you trying to achieve posting all that information..??? Does anyone even care to read all that...???? :confused:

stuckinmuck
06-19-2007, 04:00 PM
http://www.heritage.org/Research/Immigration/2007legislation_2.cfm

The Senate's Second Secret Immigration Bill
by The Heritage Foundation
FYI

For weeks, Americans were told that there are only two options for dealing with the nation's illegal immigration problem: stay with the status quo or accept a "grand bargain"--a tenuous behind-closed-doors deal, first made public by The Heritage Foundation, which contained nearly 800 pages of flawed policies. In the face of overwhelming criticism from all sides, this legislation was withdrawn from the Senate.

Now, an altogether new bill (S. 1639) has been introduced by Senators Ted Kennedy and Arlen Specter. It seems to incorporate the previous legislation, with some amendments. After it is read into the Senate calendar on Wednesday, the Majority Leader will be able to proceed to consider this legislation anew at any time; debate is likely to follow later this week, with a final vote very soon thereafter.

This schedule will afford lawmakers even less time for consideration and deliberation than they had before. It will deny them the various procedures long associated with America's deliberative lawmaking process--hearings, testimony, committee debate and amendments, floor debate, and the possibility of further amendments. Instead, according to reports, this legislation will proceed based on an altogether new and expedited procedure designed for the sole purpose of forcing the bill's many ill-conceived policies over legitimate minority objections.

As it has before, for the sake of open deliberation and public education, The Heritage Foundation is making this legislation publicly available to encourage widespread debate and discussion. Heritage Foundation analysts will be reading this legislation and considering its implications--as will everyone outside the confines of the narrow group that conceived it--as quickly as possible.

Download S.1639: The Secure Borders, Economic Opportunity and Immigration Reform Act of 2007 (PDF, 20 MB)

stuckinmuck
06-19-2007, 04:22 PM
Deleting link since the point was misunderstood completely.

factoryman
06-19-2007, 04:28 PM
is not appropriate. Moderators should edit and delete. It is disparaging to India. I didn't go deep into the site.

Sen.Kennedy is a great leader and a statesman. He is very concerned about his country.

It is another matter, that Indian community has thrived for 8000 years on its individual identity. They will not get assimilated, but with co-exist in a different culture / country.

stuckinmuck
06-19-2007, 04:31 PM
factoryman, I did not mean to disparage India at all. It's my birth country. All I'm saying is that Sen. Kennedy is not aware of what's going on in India (terrorism and rising fundamentalism) and the link is in context of his comments. It's a very concerning study about what's going wrong in our country. Where do you see it as disparaging to India? Also, Indians assimilate very well wherever they are. I am proud of that quality.

In fact, there is a similar study on Europe. Please check this link: http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=newsarchive&sid=a3GwcTFwAxzg

We have very ominous warnings on the future of India and Europe. That's my point. I do not mean to disparage India or Europe in any way. But we should be aware of what's going on in the world.

Legal
06-19-2007, 04:36 PM
Shameful. Didn't see anything new in the "second" bill. Has 90 K for currently backlogged EB immigrants...has the same crappy point system and crapier per country limits.

nat23
06-19-2007, 04:58 PM
factoryman, I did not mean to disparage India at all. It's my birth country. All I'm saying is that Sen. Kennedy is not aware of what's going on in India (terrorism and rising fundamentalism) and the link is in context of his comments. It's a very concerning study about what's going wrong in our country. Where do you see it as disparaging to India? Also, Indians assimilate very well wherever they are. I am proud of that quality.

In fact, there is a similar study on Europe. Please check this link: http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=newsarchive&sid=a3GwcTFwAxzg

We have very ominous warnings on the future of India and Europe. That's my point. I do not mean to disparage India or Europe in any way. But we should be aware of what's going on in the world.

Please limit this thread to posting news articles. Discussions can take place elsewhere.

Thanks

starscream
06-19-2007, 05:14 PM
House Republicans have introduced their own version of immigration bill

http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-immig20jun20,0,3608273.story?coll=la-home-center

gcnirvana
06-21-2007, 03:17 PM
http://www.businessweek.com/bwdaily/dnflash/content/jun2007/db20070620_915353.htm

Contact the author at Moira_Herbst@businessweek.com

logiclife
06-21-2007, 08:21 PM
Opponents vow to try to block immigration bill (http://www.reuters.com/article/companyNewsAndPR/idUSN2140176520070621) By Donna Smith, Thu Jun 21, 2007

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A group of Republican senators opposed to a sweeping immigration overhaul that would legalize millions of unlawful immigrants said on Thursday they were determined to torpedo the bill when the Senate resumes debate next week.

"The process has been rigged from the beginning, which we think gives us justification to use every measure possible to slow this thing down and stop it," said Sen. Jim DeMint, a South Carolina Republican, at a news conference.

DeMint and other Republican opponents argue the bill amounts to amnesty for millions of law-breakers with no guarantee that tough border security and workplace enforcement measures would go into effect. They argue the legalization program will only encourage more illegal immigration.

The immigration overhaul, put together during months of negotiations among a small group Republicans, Democrats and the White House, would be a major legislative victory for President George W. Bush in his second term. Democrats have pressed him to bring more of his Republican allies in Congress on board after the bill stalled in the face of stiff opposition.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, a Nevada Democrat, decried Republican efforts to slow the legislation and said he was hopeful it would pass this time around.

A determined minority can often derail legislation in the closely divided 100-member Senate where it takes 60 votes to advance any controversial bill. But it was unclear if opponents of the immigration bill would be able to maneuver around a rarely used tactic, called a clay pigeon, Reid plans to use to push the bill to passage.

The parliamentary ploy effectively allows Senate leaders to pick amendments for consideration and shut out the opposition.

Democrats are also divided over the immigration bill. Labor unions oppose the temporary worker program saying it would create an underclass of cheap laborers. Bush, backed by his Republican party's pro-business wing, favors the temporary worker program to fill jobs they say Americans cannot or will not perform.

A survey of illegal immigrants from Latin American countries released on Thursday showed the vast majority of them would seek legal residency if the legislation passes.

The poll of 1,600 illegal immigrants conducted by New America Media, an association of ethnic news media, found about 83 percent would apply for the new "Z" visa that would allow them to work legally in the United States and eventually apply for permanent resident status.

But about 27 percent of those said that they would probably not apply if they were required to return to their home country to pick up the visa, the survey said.

This whole clay pigeon business really sounds to me like a huge bird dropping headed upon the legals.

Anyways, we have to wait until monday to find out if this clay pigeon is going to fly or not.

vina92
06-22-2007, 05:52 PM
http://news.moneycentral.msn.com/provider/providerarticle.aspx?Feed=BWK&Date=20070622&ID=7071981

still
06-24-2007, 01:43 PM
Not related to Immigration but very well with your american dream.

http://www.opposingdigits.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=6652

rama0083
06-24-2007, 10:10 PM
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070625/ap_on_go_co/congress_immigration

nat23
06-24-2007, 10:32 PM
Bush Counting on
Tougher Enforcement
To Carry Revived Bill
By DAVID ROGERS
June 25, 2007

WASHINGTON -- Immigration legislation returns to the Senate this week with the White House hoping that concessions to conservatives and pressure from business will draw reluctant Republicans on board.

The measure, a major priority for President Bush, was pulled from the floor June 7 after twice failing to get the 60 votes needed to cut off debate. Since then, $4.4 billion has been added to improve border security, and further changes are expected to emphasize national security and try to quell the revolt on the right.

The proposals would establish an entry-exit tracking system for future guest workers and would permanently bar entry to individuals who are caught overstaying their visas. Criminal-background checks of illegal immigrants seeking probationary visas would be expanded and more personnel hired for enforcement. And the high-tech industry has been promised an amendment adding 40,000 annual visas for skilled workers and giving companies a greater say in hiring the employees they want.


Under pressure from the White House, much of the business community -- with the chief exception of home builders -- has agreed not to oppose stricter work-site rules requiring verification of workers' legal status. Major trade groups have begun to endorse the bill, even though they find it "less than perfect," as Harold McGraw III, chairman of the Business Roundtable, put it.

Nonetheless, the bill's path is perilous. Tensions were evident Friday, according to industry sources, as Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez telephoned high-tech executives, including Microsoft Corp. Chief Executive Steve Ballmer, to press the companies to do more to rally support for the bill.

"It's an uphill fight," says Massachusetts Democratic Sen. Edward Kennedy. Senate Republican Whip Trent Lott of Mississippi, who worked to resurrect the package, told "Fox News Sunday" that "the wheels may come off."

"I haven't seen a lot of Lazaruses coming out of the Senate," said former House Speaker Dennis Hastert, an Illinois Republican. Lawmakers describe a daily barrage of angry phone calls protesting plans to legalize millions of undocumented workers.

A first test will come tomorrow when the Senate votes on a procedural motion to expedite consideration of the bill. The White House is confident of getting the 60 votes needed. But that could require 22 Republicans, and there is growing anxiety that the vote won't be the cakewalk once anticipated given so many senators' unwillingness to commit.

Debate will then follow on amendments, some of which risk alienating supporters. Labor Democrats, such as Sen. Robert Menendez of New Jersey, are increasingly unhappy with the bill's rightward tilt. Among Republicans, even White House allies such as New Hampshire Sen. Judd Gregg say the administration has "zero credibility" on the border-security issue. "I will vote to proceed, but I think it is very undecided now if the bill will pass," Mr. Gregg said.

Beyond the amendments, opponents can raise multiple procedural hurdles, requiring 60-vote supermajorities to waive, stretching out the process and wearing down backers. "Support for it has continued to erode," Sen. Jeff Sessions (R., Ala.), said in an appearance on ABC News's "This Week." "The poll numbers continue to plummet."

Conservatives helped kill immigration overhaul in the last Congress, and the tone this year is even tougher. "It's vicious," says Mr. Hastert, who says his office had to take a longtime Hispanic aide off the phones because of abuse by callers.


At the same time, conservative think tanks, like the corporate-supported Heritage Foundation, have weighed in against the bill and added an intellectual element that was less prominent last year.

"Between the last round and this one, a lot more people have done more serious work," said Matthew Spaulding of Heritage. "The debate is at a level it wasn't before....The second time it has come up there has been a lot more analysis."

The irony is that Mr. Bush has governed so long by courting the same conservative base pitted against him now. Other presidents, such as Bill Clinton, also defied their supporters with initiatives -- in his case, revamping welfare in the mid 1990s. But there wasn't the same sense of betrayal and anger then among Democrats in Congress, who split almost evenly on the final welfare bill.

In this case, Mr. Bush is not only defying his past style, but doing it on an issue that especially riles his base.

Nonetheless, with his boyhood roots amid West Texas's large Mexican-American community, Mr. Bush has a personal commitment to resolving the immigration issue despite his weakened political standing. In his radio address Saturday, the president urged lawmakers to "summon the political courage" to act.

Increasingly, the administration has begun to counter its critics with national-security arguments, highlighting how the bill would better secure U.S. borders and track foreigners in the country. "This is first and foremost a national-security bill," Mr. Gutierrez said in an interview. "If you can convince people of the risk of not getting the bill, they are supportive."

Agriculture interests, dependent on immigrant labor, have been faithful to the bill, running newspaper spots and radio ads in key Southern states. But business lobbyists discount their own ability to change votes, given Americans' deep emotions stirred by the debate. And there is frustration on many sides that no time has been set aside to reconsider a narrowly adopted amendment to terminate the guest-worker program after five years.

The high-tech industry, which could help sway Republicans such as Mr. Gregg or his colleagues in Minnesota and Virginia, shares the same dilemma. It has been promised a two-part amendment that would increase the number of visas to skilled workers by 40,000 a year and allow a five-year period in which employers would continue to have greater say in selecting the employees they want. In the first two years, employers would be able to petition to fill as many as 115,401 slots. That would fall to about 87,000 in the third year, 58,467 in the fourth and 44,234 in the fifth.

With this commitment, the industry is supporting the larger bill, but it remains worried by a labor-backed amendment to the H-1B visa program crafted by Senate Majority Whip Richard Durbin, an Illinois Democrat. Days of negotiation have failed to bring a breakthrough, and the administration is fearful that the industry is holding back its efforts to push the bill until the issue is resolved.
A veteran of the civil-rights debates in the 1960s, Mr. Kennedy keeps pressing. "If we miss this opportunity, this country is going to be disserved and so will we for having failed to meet our responsibilities," he says. "We're going to have been taken in by the bumper-sticker-solution people rather than dealing with the substantive issue, and I think that's demeaning to the institution."

Write to David Rogers at david.rogers@wsj.com

tnite
06-25-2007, 07:58 AM
NYTIMES (http://www.nytimes.com/2007/06/25/technology/25tech.html?_r=1&hp&oref=slogin)WASHINGTON, June 24 — Bill Gates and Steven A. Ballmer of Microsoft have led a parade of high-tech executives to Capitol Hill, urging lawmakers to provide more visas for temporary foreign workers and permanent immigrants who can fill critical jobs.

Google has reminded senators that one of its founders, Sergey Brin, came from the Soviet Union as a young boy. To stay competitive in a “knowledge-based economy,” company officials have said, Google needs to hire many more immigrants as software engineers, mathematicians and computer scientists.

The top executives of these and other high-tech companies have been making a huge effort to reshape the Senate immigration bill to meet their demand for more foreign workers. But they have had only limited success, as is often the case when strong-willed corporate leaders confront powerful members of Congress.

The Senate plans to resume work on the bill this week. Much of the debate will focus on proposals for granting legal status to illegal immigrants. But the sections of the bill affecting high-tech industries could prove to be very important as well.

High-tech companies want to be able to hire larger numbers of well-educated, foreign-born professionals who, they say, can help them succeed in the global economy. For these scientists and engineers, they seek permanent-residence visas, known as green cards, and H-1B visas. The H-1B program provides temporary work visas for people who have university degrees or the equivalent to fill jobs in specialty occupations including health care and technology. The Senate bill would expand the number of work visas for skilled professionals, but high-tech companies say the proposed increase is not nearly enough. Several provisions of the Senate bill are meant to enhance protections for American workers and to prevent visa fraud and abuse.

High-tech companies were surprised and upset by the bill that emerged last month from secret Senate negotiations. E. John Krumholtz, director of federal affairs at Microsoft, said the bill was “worse than the status quo, and the status quo is a disaster.”

In the last two weeks, these businesses have quietly negotiated for changes to meet some of their needs. But the bill still falls far short of what they want, an outcome suggesting that their political clout does not match their economic strength.

Stephen W. Yale-Loehr, a co-author of a treatise on immigration law, said: “High-tech companies are very organized. They have numerous lobby groups. When Bill Gates advocates more H-1B visas and green cards for tech workers, everyone listens.

“But that supposed influence has not translated into legislative results,” Mr. Yale-Loehr, who teaches at Cornell Law School, continued. “High-tech companies have been lobbying unsuccessfully since 2003 for more H-1B visas. It’s hard to get anything through Congress these days. In addition, anti-immigrant groups are well organized. U.S. computer programmers are constantly arguing that H-1B workers undercut their wages.”

The Republican architects of the Senate bill, like Senators Jon Kyl of Arizona and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, thought they were doing a favor for high-tech companies when they proposed a “point system” to evaluate immigrants seeking green cards. The point system would reward people who have advanced degrees and job skills needed in the United States.

But the high-tech companies were upset because the bill would have stripped them of the ability to sponsor specific immigrants for particular jobs.

The companies flooded Senate offices with letters, telephone calls and e-mail messages seeking changes to the bill. Mr. Ballmer, the blunt-spoken chief executive of Microsoft, Craig R. Barrett, the chairman of Intel, and other executives pressed their concerns in person.

These advocates have made some gains, which are embodied in an amendment to be proposed by Mr. Kyl and Senator Maria Cantwell, Democrat of Washington.

Edward J. Sweeney, senior vice president of National Semiconductor, based in Santa Clara, Calif., said, “I’ve spent many hours in Washington talking with senators to get their support on this amendment.”

Likewise, William D. Watkins, the chief executive of Seagate Technology, the world’s largest maker of computer disk drives, said he met with five or six senators two weeks ago.

Under the Kyl-Cantwell proposal, 20,000 green cards would be set aside each year for immigrants of extraordinary ability, outstanding professors and researchers and certain managers and executives of multinational corporations. The original bill would have eliminated the existing preference for such workers.

In addition, the amendment would give employers five years to adjust their hiring practices to the new “merit-based” point system for obtaining green cards.

“For the first five years, employers would still have a say,” Ms. Cantwell said in an interview. “They could recruit the best and the brightest.”
read the rest here (http://www.nytimes.com/2007/06/25/technology/25tech.html?_r=1&hp&oref=slogin)

Legal
06-25-2007, 11:27 AM
June 25, 2007
Lead Weight or Gold Mine: What Are the True Costs of Immigration?
By Karl Zinsmeister and Edward Lazear

Over the last generation, not only the U.S. but also other high-immigration countries like the U.K., Canada, and Australia have experienced financial booms amidst strong immigration. Yet gloomy conclusions about the economic effects of immigration continue to surface. For example, a recent paper from the Heritage Foundation suggests that immigrant households in the U.S. cost federal, state, and local governments almost $20,000 per year (benefits paid out minus taxes received).

This claim is far out of line with other research--and with the immigration reform pending in the Senate. Today's bill would leave both future arrivals and the current undocumented ineligible for welfare benefits, Food Stamps, and Medicaid (except for emergency services). Under the new blueprint, one can qualify for those kinds of government transfers only the old-fashioned way: by becoming a citizen (or a Lawful Permanent Resident and then waiting five additional years). And, contrary to popular mythology, those will be demanding processes, taking a minimum of 13-18 years of effort (on either path).


Despite claims to the contrary, immigrants are net contributors to Social Security. The only immigrants able to collect benefits here will be those who contribute to the program under their own Social Security number for at least ten years. And many immigrants return to their home countries before they qualify for retirement, making no claim on our system despite their payments. Since seven out of ten immigrants fall into prime working ages (versus only half of the native population), those who stay will generally have FICA taxes taken out of their paychecks for decades. The bottom line, according to Social Security data, is that immigrants improve the solvency of our retirement system.

The Heritage authors focus entirely on immigrants without a high school degree, rather than the typical immigrant. They are correct in pointing out that people with that level of education often end up costing the government more in benefits than they pay in taxes. The larger reality is that many Americans receive government benefits paid for by those higher up the income ladder (97% of income taxes are paid by the top half of all earners). Low-skill immigrants are actually comparatively self-sufficient compared to low-skill native householders, because they are more likely to be working (67% vs. 37%) and married (66% vs. 45%).

The classic study on the costs and benefits of immigration was produced by a team of prominent economists and demographers for the National Research Council. Those researchers concluded that the long-run cost to all government treasuries of an immigrant with less than a high school degree is around $17,000 (in 2006 dollars). Meanwhile, an immigrant with more than a high school degree produces a surplus of $253,000, and the average for all immigrants was $102,000 more in taxes paid than benefits received.

The reform now before Congress will sharply improve these figures. It's reasonable to criticize the current immigration system as too focused on family connections, and not as selective as it should be to keep the U.S. competitive in science, technology, and economic growth. Presently, about half of all illegal immigrants and a quarter of all legal immigrants arrive with less than a full high school education--not ideal preparation for life in an advanced industrial society.

The new immigration rules backed by President Bush, however, will create a merit system alongside existing family preferences. Individuals chosen through the point system will almost always have a high school degree, with a great many possessing college or graduate training, or certified vocational skills. In addition to stoking U.S. business output, these new high-productivity immigrants will have a very positive effect on treasuries at all levels of government.

But the central point overlooked by many critics is that an immigrant's effect on government treasuries doesn't adequately capture his contribution to the U.S. economy. The private sector, not the government fisc, is what powers our nation. To evaluate the real effect of immigrants, we must look at overall economic activity.

Some indicative research at the state level hints at these larger influences. A 2006 report from the UNC-Chapel Hill business school found that Hispanics in North Carolina contributed more than $9 billion to their state economy as a whole. Another 2006 study, by the Texas comptroller, concluded that 1.4 million immigrants living in Texas increased the size of that state's economy by $18 billion. The benefits from this growth go to the native-born population as well as to the immigrants themselves.

Immigrants enrich our private economy in a variety of ways. Their contributions make viable certain businesses that would otherwise move overseas. They have a stimulative effect as consumers--in a typical county today, 28% of population growth comes from immigration. They increase productivity by adding labor that is mostly complementary to native workers. This is why a recent study of California by U.C.-Davis economist Giovanni Peri found that immigration between 1990 and 2004 "induced a 4% real wage increase for the average native worker."

The National Research Council study attempted to cumulate some of these economic benefits. Updating their approach to 2007 suggests that immigrants to America now increase the total income of their fellow citizens by over $30 billion annually.

When accounting for the costs and benefits of immigrants, it's also necessary to consider the economic contributions of their offspring. The largest immigration-related expense to government is the cost of schooling the new arrivals' children. But this next generation is not just some dead weight--it is, typically, the real payoff from immigration.

Evidence shows that the children of immigrants exceed their parents in income, achievement, and social success at very high rates. Second-generation Americans are 12% more likely to obtain a college degree than other natives, and their median annual earnings are close to $2,000 higher. Those striving successors are immigration's final gift to the United States.

Karl Zinsmeister is President Bush’s chief domestic policy adviser. Edward Lazear is chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers.

amitjoey
06-25-2007, 01:45 PM
IV members have saved all of us a lot of money on attorney phone calls, getting answers to medical test questions and other general questions. Please contribute to IV so that we can keep this effort going. While everybody is busy collecting documents and paperwork for 485, core IV again is doing their personal paperwork and + lobbying.
Please contribute, especially if you are new and never contributed. Please do not be a freeloader and get your questions answered and run away.

yabadaba
06-25-2007, 03:26 PM
i watch mtp every sunday. This weekend's mtp was awesome. Pat buchanan kept harping on the same points that talk radio keeps screaming about. I was completely impressed with Congressman Guiterrez though...very eloquent, corrected buchanan time and again and responded to all his allegations

raju123
06-25-2007, 03:51 PM
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB118274663731146814.html?mod=googlenews_wsj

Revised Bill to Add Fuel
To Immigration Debate
By DAVID HALL
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL ONLINE
June 25, 2007 7:21 a.m.

The Morning Brief, a look at the day's biggest news, is emailed to subscribers by 7 a.m. every business day. Sign up for the e-mail here.

The Senate will revisit the immigration debate this week as a revamped bill with more money to bolster border security comes up for consideration, but even some supporters acknowledge the legislation faces a tough road ahead.

The original bill was pulled from the Senate floor earlier this month. Now, the revised version needs to find support from at least 60 senators for a procedural motion expediting consideration of the legislation to push ahead, The Wall Street Journal notes. The Bush administration expects to get enough backers to clear this first hurdle, but it isn't leaving things up to chance. Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez has asked tech industry executives such as Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer to do more to rally support for the bill, industry sources tell the Journal. And lawmakers doing the rounds on Sunday morning talk shows expressed concerns. Republican Sen. Jeff Sessions of Alabama said on ABC News's "This Week" that support for the bill "has continued to erode," the Journal notes, while Senate Republican Whip Trent Lott, of Mississippi, who worked to revive the bill, told Fox News Sunday that "the wheels may come off." Democratic Sen. Edward Kennedy of Massachusetts, who expects enough Republicans will vote with Democrats to advance the legislation, said on "This Week" that there is "a recognition that doing nothing is not an alternative," Bloomberg reports.

The revised bill contains $4.4 billion in added funds to beef up border security, while other changes are expected to include an exit-entry tracking system for guest workers, tougher background checks and more annual visas for skilled workers, the Journal reports. The high-tech industry, hoping to hire more well-educated, foreign-born professionals, has lobbied hard for more H-1B visas, which provide temporary visas for people with university degrees or the equivalent to fill specialty occupations, the New York Times writes. But the tech sector has faced opposition in its push for more visas from groups such as computer programmers who argue that such visas undercut their wages, Stephen W. Yale-Loehr, a co-author of a treatise on immigration law, tells the Times.

Whether there is progress or not at the federal level, state legislatures are enacting a record number of proposals on immigration, the Washington Post notes, pointing to at least 1,100 immigration bills that have been submitted by lawmakers by the time most state legislatures adjourned in May – more than double last year's total. At least 18 states have enacted immigration laws, some limiting immigrants' ability to get jobs or find housing, the paper notes, adding that such laws are expected to grow at the state level this year.

xlr8r
06-26-2007, 02:12 PM
Looks like this monstrosity is back on the Senate floor.


http://www.miamiherald.com/509/story/151845.html

Senate to reopen talks on immigration bill
BY LESLEY CLARK
lclark@MiamiHerald.com

WASHINGTON -- A divided Senate agreed Tuesday to reopen debate on a controversial immigration bill as President Bush lobbied for its passage.

The Senate voted 64-35 to open talks on the legislation, though final passage is uncertain, given the level of opposition to provisions that would legalize millions of undocumented workers while hardening the nation's borders.

''This bill will not get it done without Republican support,'' Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid warned before the noontime vote.

The vote came after President Bush Tuesday renewed his call for action, asking the Senate to pass what he called a ``careful compromise.''

Bush aides said they're optimistic about the once moribund bill's chance at clearing the Senate later this week, and Bush noted ``when successful in the Senate, we'll be reconvening to figure out how to get the bill out of the House.''

''I view this as a historic opportunity for Congress to act,'' Bush told a business leaders meeting near the White House on Tuesday. ``For Congress to replace a system that is not working with one that we believe will work a lot better.''

But the bill's prospects in the House are even hazier. House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer and other Democrats believe there should be immigration legislation, but Hoyer declined Tuesday to predict when or if the House would begin debate on the measure.

Crafted by a bipartisan group of senators and two Bush Cabinet appointees, the bill seeks to legalize millions of undocumented immigrants, create a temporary guest-worker program, toughen security along the U.S. borders with Mexico and Canada and crack down on employers who hire illegal workers.

But along the way the bill has picked up detractors from the right -- which dismisses legalization as amnesty -- and from some Democrats who say its emphasis on skills-based immigration could be harmful to families. Both sides have proposed changes that could jeopardize the legislation.

The bill collapsed earlier this month, but stepped up negotiations and intense lobbying by the president put it back on track. Bush, who has called for immigration changes since the outset of his presidency, has aggressively committed his administration to pass the bill, dispatching two Cabinet members to the Hill and criticizing Republicans who denounced it.

He acknowledged Tuesday that not everyone is happy with the results.

''In a good piece of legislation like this, and a difficult piece of legislation like this, one side doesn't get everything they want,'' he said.

tnite
06-26-2007, 10:42 PM
NYTIMES (http://www.nytimes.com/2007/06/27/washington/27points.html?hp)TORONTO, June 26 — With an advanced degree in business management from a university in India and impeccable English, Salman Kureishy is precisely the type of foreigner that Canada’s merit-based immigration system was designed to attract.

Senate Takes Up a Revised Immigration Bill, but Obstacles Remain (June 27, 2007) Yet eight years went by from the time Mr. Kureishy passed his first Canadian immigration test until he moved from India to Canada. Then he had to endure nine months of bureaucratic delays before landing a job in his field in March.

Mr. Kureishy’s experience — and that of Canada’s immigration system — offers a cautionary tale for the United States. Mr. Kureishy came to this country under a system Canada pioneered in the 1960s that favors highly skilled foreigners, by assigning points for education and work experience and accepting those who earn high scores.

A similar point system for the United States is proposed in the immigration bill that bounced back to life on Tuesday, when the Senate reversed a previous stand and brought the bill back to the floor. The vote did not guarantee passage of the bill, which calls for the biggest changes in immigration law in more than 20 years.

The point system has helped Canada compete with the United States and other Western powers for highly educated workers, the most coveted immigrants in high-tech and other cutting-edge industries. But in recent years, immigration lawyers and labor market analysts say, the Canadian system has become an immovable beast, with a backlog of more than 800,000 applications and waits of four years or more.

The system’s bias toward the educated has left some industries crying out for skilled blue-collar workers, especially in western Canada where Alberta’s busy oil fields have generated an economic boom. Studies by the Alberta government show the province could be short by as many as 100,000 workers over the next decade.

In response, some Canadian employers are sidestepping the point system and relying instead on a program initiated in 1998 that allows provincial governments to hand-pick some immigrant workers, and on temporary foreign-worker permits.

“The points system is so inflexible,” said Herman Van Reekum, an immigration consultant in Calgary who helps Alberta employers find workers. “We need low-skill workers and trades workers here, and those people have no hope under the points system.”

Canada accepts about 250,000 immigrants each year, more than doubling the per-capita rate of immigration in the United States, census figures from both countries show. Nearly two-thirds of Canada’s population growth comes from immigrants, according to the 2006 census, compared with the United States, where about 43 percent of the population growth comes from immigration. Approximately half of Canada’s immigrants come through the point system.

Under Canada’s system, 67 points on a 100-point test is a passing score. In addition to education and work experience, aspiring immigrants earn high points for their command of languages and for being between 21 and 49 years old. In the United States, the Senate bill would grant higher points for advanced education, English proficiency and skills in technology and other fields that are in demand. Lower points would be given for the family ties that have been the basic stepping stones of the American immigration system for four decades.

Part of the backlog in Canada can be traced to a provision in the Canadian system that allows highly skilled foreigners to apply to immigrate even if they do not have a job offer. Similarly, the Senate bill would not require merit system applicants to have job offers in the United States, although it would grant additional points to those who do.

Without an employment requirement, Canada has been deluged with applications. In testimony in May before an immigration subcommittee of the United States House of Representatives, Howard Greenberg, an immigration lawyer in Toronto, compared the Canadian system to a bathtub with an open faucet and a clogged drain. “It is not surprising that Canada’s bathtub is overflowing,” Mr. Greenberg said.

Since applications are not screened first by employers, the government bears the burden and cost of assessing them. The system is often slow to evaluate the foreign education credentials and work experience of new immigrants and to direct them toward employers who need their skills, said Jeffrey Reitz, professor of immigration studies at the University of Toronto.

tnite
06-26-2007, 10:43 PM
NYTIMES (http://www.nytimes.com/2007/06/27/washington/27points.html?pagewanted=2&hp)(Page 2 of 2)

The problem has been acute in regulated professions like medicine, where a professional organization, the Medical Council of Canada, reviews foreign credentials of new immigrants. The group has had difficulty assessing how a degree earned in China or India stacks up against a similar degree from a university in Canada or the United States. Frustrated by delays, some doctors and other highly trained immigrants take jobs outside their fields just to make ends meet.

Senate Takes Up a Revised Immigration Bill, but Obstacles Remain (June 27, 2007) The sheer size of the Canadian point system, the complexity of its rules and its backlogs make it slow to adjust to shifts in the labor market, like the oil boom in Alberta.

“I am a university professor, and I can barely figure out the points system,” said Don J. DeVoretz, an economics professor at Simon Fraser University in British Columbia who studies immigration systems. “Lawyers have books that are three feet thick explaining the system.”

The rush to develop the oil fields in northern Alberta has attracted oil companies from around the world, unleashing a surge of construction. Contractors say that often the only thing holding them back is a shortage of qualified workers.

Scott Burns, president of Burnco Rock Products in Calgary, a construction materials company with about 1,000 employees, said he had been able to meet his labor needs only by using temporary work permits. Mr. Burns hired 39 Filipinos for jobs in his concrete plants and plans to hire more. He said that many of the temporary workers had critically needed skills, but that they had no hope of immigrating permanently under the federal point system.

“The system is very much broken,” Mr. Burns said.

Mr. Kureishy, the immigrant from India, said he was drawn to Canada late in his career by its open society and what appeared to be strong interest in his professional abilities. But even though he waited eight years to immigrate, the equivalent of a doctoral degree in human resources development that he earned from Xavier Labor Relations Institute in India was not evaluated in Canada until he arrived here. During his first six months, Canadian employers had no formal comparison of his credentials to guide them.

Eventually, Mr. Kureishy, 55, found full-time work in his field, as a program manager assisting foreign professionals at Ryerson University in Toronto. “It was a long process, but I look at myself as fairly resilient,” Mr. Kureishy said.

He criticized Canada as providing little support to immigrants after they arrived.

“If you advertised for professors and one comes over and is driving a taxi,” he said, “that’s a problem.”

Christopher Mason reported from Toronto, and Julia Preston from New York.

nat23
06-28-2007, 09:11 AM
WASHINGTON - Conservative Republican senators and a handful of Democrats are trying to put a final knife in President Bush's plan for legalizing millions of unlawful immigrants.


A broad immigration bill, embracing what critics call amnesty, survived a series of unfriendly amendments Wednesday. Supporters pointed to the bill's tighter borders and workplace rules to keep it alive.

Both sides agreed the crucial vote occurs Thursday. Supporters must gain 60 votes in the 100-member chamber to limit debate and clear the way for a roll call on final passage, perhaps by Friday. Anything less will likely doom the legislation until a new president and Congress take office in 2009.

Bush's allies passed a similar test Tuesday, but several senators said they simply were agreeing to let debate continue for a couple of days, and they made no promises to support the legislation on Thursday or beyond.

The revived immigration measure could grant legalization to the estimated 12 million unlawful immigrants if they pass background checks and pay fines and fees. It also would toughen border security and institute a new system for weeding out illegal immigrants from workplaces.

It faces challenges from the left as well as the right.

Sen. Bob Menendez, D-N.J., was among those disappointed Wednesday. The Senate voted 55-40 to reject his amendment that would have made it easier for some immigrants to obtain visas for family members left behind in their home countries.

"This action does nothing to allay my concerns about the increasingly right-wing tilt to these proceedings, and it makes it more difficult to vote in favor of invoking cloture on the bill," Menendez said, referring to Thursday's crucial vote to limit debate.

While Menendez and a few other Democrats may oppose the bill, the main opponents have been Bush's fellow sunbelt Republicans. GOP Sens. David Vitter of Louisiana, Jim DeMint of South Carolina and Jeff Sessions of Alabama led the charge, often backed by Texans Kay Bailey Hutchison and John Cornyn.

Late Wednesday, they applauded the Senate's refusal to reject a fairly low-key amendment that, because of parliamentary rules, left leaders no choice but to halt action until Thursday's showdown vote.

"They tried to railroad this through today, but we derailed the train," DeMint said. Asked if he was poised to kill the bill Thursday, DeMint replied, "we hope to."

The bill's bipartisan supporters, who include liberals such as Edward Kennedy, D-Mass., and conservatives such as Jon Kyl, R-Ariz., said they would push hard to survive Thursday's vote. But they were frustrated by the lack of enthusiasm shown by many in the president's party.

Some noted the virtual absence throughout Wednesday's floor debate of Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., who has declined to say how he would vote on the measure.

McConnell left GOP colleagues including Arlen Specter, R-Pa., to contend with the Vitter-DeMint-Sessions group, while Democrats were represented in the chamber most of the day by Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada.

shukla77
06-30-2007, 09:03 AM
Is there a meaning of color codes in the articles posted by macaca... black vs light/dark blue vs light/dark green vs light/dark red? :D Please dont take it personally.....I am just curious.

shukla
------

pappu
07-01-2007, 11:07 AM
Thank you Macaca for driving this thread. :)

please make sure to write to every reporter who writes the article you post It will be a huge help. Please also urge everyone to also join you in writing to these reporters.

gsc999
07-01-2007, 09:34 PM
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070630/ap_on_fe_st/odd_citizen_at105

Phew, long wait! :rolleyes:

Gravitation
07-02-2007, 10:17 AM
A 105-year-old Cuban-born man who had at least one pending wish finally had it fulfilled — he became a U.S. citizen.

Jose Temprana celebrated by sipping champagne with friends ...
"I feel different, Satisfied, very happy. It was worth the wait."


Once here, he worked to get his citizenship but fell short twice.
"I've wanted ... it since I was 8 or 10 years old," Temprana said.

nonimmi
07-03-2007, 03:31 PM
http://lofgren.house.gov/PRArticle.aspx?NewsID=1808

saimrathi
07-03-2007, 03:47 PM
http://lofgren.house.gov/PRArticle.aspx?NewsID=1808

Please digg http://digg.com/politics/Rep_Lofgren_Issues_Statement_on_Updated_Visa_Bulle tin

gcnirvana
07-05-2007, 02:45 PM
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/07/04/us/04visas.html?_r=1&oref=slogin
U.S. Withdraws Offer of 60,000 Job-Based Visas, Angering Immigration Lawyers

By JULIA PRESTON
Published: July 4, 2007
Immigration lawyers raised unusually irate protests yesterday after the State Department and the immigration service abruptly withdrew tens of thousands of job-based visas they had offered last month to foreign professionals hoping to become permanent residents in the United States.

The outcry was provoked by a terse announcement on Monday in which the State Department said it would not grant any more visas for the 2007 fiscal year to foreigners applying to become permanent residents based on their job skills. That notice reversed one the department had issued on June 13 announcing a two-month window starting July 2 for aspiring, high-skilled immigrants from around the world to present applications for visas known as green cards.

The State Department said the 60,000 visas it had expected to offer would no longer be available because of “sudden backlog reduction efforts” by Citizenship and Immigration Services, the federal agency that processes applications for the visas offered by the department.

In a statement yesterday, the American Immigration Lawyers Association accused the two agencies of perpetrating a “hoax” and a “bait and switch” against hopeful legal immigrants who played by the book.

“Here people followed the rules and did everything right, yet without warning or explanation the door was slammed in their faces,” said Kathleen Campbell Walker, the president of the association.

To apply, immigrants must undergo medical examinations and assemble documents to prove their job skills and show that a United States employer has sponsored them. Foreigners must be in the United States when they present their applications, which are processed on a first-come, first-served basis.

Because of backlogs for employment-based visas, foreigners have had to wait many years just to be allowed to file their applications.

Thousands of medical and technology professionals, including many working here on temporary visas, scrambled for weeks to get their documents together, in some cases canceling travel plans, in order to file their applications on Monday, the first day of the window. The State Department and the immigration agency closed the window without accepting a single application.

“I am concerned that such action may violate the law and could threaten the integrity of our immigration system,” Representative Zoe Lofgren, Democrat of California who is chairwoman of the House Judiciary subcommittee on immigration, wrote in letters yesterday to Michael Chertoff, the secretary of homeland security, and Condoleezza Rice, the secretary of state. Ms. Lofgren warned that the federal government could face costly litigation because of its change of course.

The State Department said it would begin accepting applications on Oct. 1 for 2008 visas. On July 30, the immigration agency will raise its processing fees by an average of 66 percent.

satishku_2000
07-05-2007, 06:00 PM
Guys

Our media drive is working , I just spoke with JULIA PRESTON for her follow up story on this .

Please try to contact as many people as possible.

small2006
07-05-2007, 06:01 PM
http://avatarsofslavery.googlepages.com/home

gcnirvana
07-05-2007, 06:03 PM
Thats awesome. I also wrote to Julia (and many others) but yet to get a reply. Will post when I get one.
But still we should keep sending our message across and make as much people aware as possible about this horrendous act!!

Guys

Our media drive is working , I just spoke with JULIA PRESTON for her follow up story on this .

Please try to contact as many people as possible.

rkumar18
07-05-2007, 09:57 PM
Not sure if this has been already posted.

Silicon Valley / San Jose Business Journal Press Release - by Carl Shusterman former INS attorney


http://www.bizjournals.com/sanjose/prnewswire/press_releases/California/2007/07/03/LATU082

tampacoolie
07-05-2007, 10:36 PM
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/07/06/us/06visa.html?_r=1&hp&oref=slogin

tdasara
07-05-2007, 11:50 PM
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/07/06/us/06visa.html?hp

map_boiler
07-06-2007, 12:03 AM
http://www.murthy.com/bulletin.html

There is much concern over whether the unavailability of visa numbers by the USCIS issuing approvals is valid or illegal, since there are many irregularities in the procedures that were followed. Our firm has become aware of older I-485s (filed well before June / July 2007) that were approved in error in June and at the very beginning of July, when there were no visa numbers available for those applicants in either month! Another problem likely to be mentioned in the lawsuit is that the USCIS counted, or allocated, a visa number for those I-485s that were pending security checks for several months, or years, without issuing the I-485 approvals! This also violates the law and regulations, as visa numbers are not supposed to be "reserved" for cases. They are to be assigned with a case approval.

It appears USCIS was so desperate to use up visas that they approved I-485's of people whose PDs were not even current in June. AILF attorneys must be licking their chops, and then some...

Unfortunately, how long is the litigation going to take? 5 years? YIKES!! But no matter...we have lots of other things to do...

tdasara
07-06-2007, 12:16 AM
If the litigation goes on that long there would be a interim relief requested which might be as early as next month or stay of the current visa bulletin and return to the original July bulletin!

map_boiler
07-06-2007, 12:56 AM
tdasara, I sure hope for the everyone's sake that there will be some interim relief if this thing drags on for years.

Also, I am increasingly confident that the USCIS probably made some dumb, and ultimately costly mistakes in their haste and desperation to play with our lives...that they will be made to pay!!!

If the litigation goes on that long there would be a interim relief requested which might be as early as next month or stay of the current visa bulletin and return to the original July bulletin!

tdasara
07-06-2007, 01:02 AM
In any court procedure the first request is a stay order!!

satishku_2000
07-06-2007, 01:04 AM
I think USCIS did approve some green cards without namecheck ...I hope they want to settle rather than go thru the process of discovery and hearings.

bitu72
07-06-2007, 01:09 AM
i am reading in some other thread that if they have to give stay order it needs to be done this month. not sure how does that ork

SDdesi
07-06-2007, 02:52 AM
http://www.wacotrib.com/opin/content/news/opinion/stories/2007/07/05/07062007wacedit.html

"Due to the fees charged, the chronically underfunded Citizenship and Immigration agency makes more money delaying immigration applications than it would by efficiently pre-screening applications and speeding up the process."

All the more reason why USCIS is so good at delaying tactics....:(

SDdesi
07-06-2007, 03:30 AM
Did anyone else read this story? MS is expanding their offices in canada and the reason - visa crunch in the US :-)

Hope this highlights the issues to the US govt.....and I hope this is just the start.

http://infotech.indiatimes.com/articleshow/2180544.cms

Also on MS press release:
http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/press/2007/jul07/07-05MSExpandVancouverPR.mspx

saimrathi
07-06-2007, 07:40 AM
Aditya Ghosh, Hindustan Times
Mumbai, July 05, 2007


Freeze on green cards till October

Legal immigrants in the US are up in arms over the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) decision to freeze processing of green card applications till October.

The reversal of an earlier decision announced in June followed the realisation that the green card quota for the year was already used up.

“The sudden backlog reduction efforts by Citizenship and Immigration Services Offices in the past month have resulted in the use of almost 60,000 employment numbers,” the USCIS explained in a bulletin. “As a result, it is necessary to make immediate adjustments to several previously announced cut-off dates.”

The freeze has hit Indians hard as many flew their families to the US, paid attorney fees and spent money on processing documents and medical tests. Now, protests have been launched on the Internet through blogs and chain mails. Many are even contemplating filing lawsuits against the freeze.

Now, protests have been launched on the Internet through blogs and chain mails. Many are even contemplating filing lawsuits against the freeze.On June 12, thousands holding employment visas celebrated when USCIS said it would accept green card applications. “There was a scramble to fulfill the long list of requirements. We made numerous calls to India to gather documents, finished medical exams. It was a rude shock when on July 2 it was announced that no more applications would be accepted,” Kunal Gupta, a computer analyst with the University of South Florida, told HT over email.

Aman Kapoor, founder and president of Immigration Voice, an NGO that helps legal immigrants in the US, told HT in an email: “We are reaching out to various agencies to determine options available to applicants.

The American Immigration Lawyers Association is thinking of filing a lawsuit against the USCIS over its rejection of otherwise properly-filed adjustment-of-status applications for the alleged reason that a visa was not available, even though the visa bulletin from the State Department states that a visa was available at the time of filing.”




(http://www.hindustantimes.com/storypage/storypage.aspx?id=0b4af334-738f-474b-bcc4-c5d6a50c0f08&&Headline=Freeze+on+green+cards+till+Oct+evokes+ang er)

chanduv23
07-06-2007, 11:18 AM
http://www.forbes.com/feeds/ap/2007/07/06/ap3889082.html


Employers Boost Payrolls by 132,000

Employers boosted payrolls by a better-than-expected 132,000 jobs in June, enough to keep the unemployment rate at a relatively low 4.5 percent. It was another sign that the economy is snapping out of a nearly yearlong sluggish spell.

The latest picture of the nation's employment climate, released by the Labor Department on Friday, also showed that workers saw solid gains in their wages last month.

The tally of 132,000 new jobs was stronger than the 125,000 that economists were forecasting. They did, however, predict that job growth would be sufficient to hold the unemployment rate at 4.5 percent, where it has stood for three straight months.

New hiring in the areas of education, health services, leisure and hospitality and government drove overall job growth last month. Construction companies also expanded employment. Those gains swamped job cuts at factories, retailers and certain professional and business services.

Meanwhile, the economy added more jobs in April and May than the government previously thought. Revised figures released Friday showed that payrolls grew by a strong 190,000 in May, much stronger than the 157,000 reported last month. In April, 122,000 positions were added, which was better than the 80,000 previously reported, which had been the fewest in two and a half years.

Workers saw modest wage gains in June.

Average hourly earning rose to $17.38, a 0.3 percent increase from May. That matched the rise anticipated by economists. Over the last 12 months, wages grew by 3.9 percent.

Wage growth is important to workers and supports consumer spending, a major ingredient in healthy overall economic activity. The modest increase in wages should ease inflation fears.

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke and his colleagues keep a close eye on wages for any signs that they might generate inflation.

Out of control inflation is bad for the economy and for the pocketbook. It shrinks paychecks, erodes purchasing power and eats into the value of investments.

The Federal Reserve last week noted that there have been some improvements on some inflation readings but made clear that it is not letting down its guard on this front. The biggest danger to the economy is if inflation doesn't recede as the Fed anticipates, Fed policy-makers said.

Still, Fed policy-makers have enough faith in their inflation forecast that they left a key interest rate last week at 5.25 percent, where it has been for a year.

yabadaba
07-06-2007, 12:12 PM
Sepia Mutiny typically ignores us but for once amaerdeep blogged about our situation.

http://www.sepiamutiny.com/sepia/archives/004552.html


USCIS Goes Nuts; Immigration Lawyers' Group to SueNewsA few weeks ago I wrote a post about what I feel has been chronic mistreatment of H-1B workers by the immigration system. This week, yet another chapter in the American Immigration Bizarro-land story has unfolded, as thousands of legal workers, following an official State Department advisory, prepared to file Green Card applications, only to be told, in some cases after they had already filed, that the USCIS would not be accepting any applications at all.

The Times explains the complicated chain of events as follows:

The episode started on June 12, when the State Department announced in a monthly bulletin that green cards would be available starting July 2 for applicants across the range of high-skilled categories. That was a signal to immigrants who have been working in this country on temporary visas that they would be able to apply to become permanent residents.

Thousands of immigrants rushed to obtain certified documents, assemble employer sponsorship papers, take medical examinations and dispatch their applications. Many canceled travel plans so they could be in the United States when their applications arrived on July 2, as the law required.

But on Monday, the State Department announced that no more green cards were available. Snared in the turnabout were well-educated, highly skilled, legal immigrants, many of them doctors and medical technicians, with long work experience in this country. All had obtained federal certification that no American workers were available for the jobs they hold. (link)
There’s more to it — the goal here was to reduce the extensive USCIS backlogs — but the reversal means the backlogs are reinstated. Now potential applicants may have to wait as many as four or five years to apply again, leaving many people in limbo. (The Times has a good interview with an Indian doctor in Illinois, who is deeply distraught about this.) As I’ve said before, the cost of an extremely slow and unpredictable immigration system comes in people’s lives: waiting 5-10 years for a Green Card without being certain of success is dispiriting at best, and soul-crushing at worst.

Incidentally, there is also an illuminating breakdown of this bizarre episode at Murthy.com. And our blog-friend Arzan Wadia had a post on this this past Monday, where he made his feelings known.

Are you one of the people who applied for a Green Card this past Monday? You may want to get in contact with a Lawyers’ Group called American Immigration Lawyers Federation (AILF). They are planning a class-action lawsuit against the USCIS over its sudden reversal, and will probably be looking for plaintiffs who meet a certain profile to join the case (see this PDF FAQ).

amardeep on July 6, 2007 07:15 AM in News · T·r·a·c·k·b·a·c·k address · Direct link · Email post

raju123
07-06-2007, 12:37 PM
Reuters article in WP. Most likely it will be picked up by other media as well.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/07/05/AR2007070501521.html

Microsoft expands in Canada amid U.S. visa crunch

By Jim Finkle and Allan Dowd
Reuters
Thursday, July 5, 2007; 5:13 PM

BOSTON/VANCOUVER, British Columbia (Reuters) - Microsoft Corp. <MSFT.O> said on Thursday it will open a software development center in Vancouver, giving it a place to employ skilled workers snagged by U.S. immigration quotas.

It may signal the start of a new hiring trend, with other U.S. high-tech firms following in Microsoft's footsteps to Canada, where lawyers say it is easier for foreign nationals to obtain work credentials.

U.S. businesses want Congress to lift quotas on the number of visas the government issues to skilled professionals such as the software engineers that Microsoft employs. But as recently as last week lawmakers rejected legislation that would have addressed their concerns. Canada doesn't impose quotas on the number of visas it issues each year.

Microsoft said it plans to open the Vancouver facility by the end of the year. It will initially have about 200 workers, and employ about 900 within a couple years.

Businesses, particularly technology firms, say they need to recruit foreign nationals, many of whom have received their graduate degrees in the United States, to compensate for a shortage of qualified programmers, engineers and scientists.

Evan Green, a Toronto immigration attorney who helps businesses obtain visas for employees, said that other U.S. companies could follow Microsoft's lead.

"Lots of companies are looking at (expanding in Canada) because of their frustration with getting U.S. visas," Green said.

But supporters of the U.S. cap say it prevents firms from using temporary foreign workers to displace higher paid American employees.

Microsoft said in a statement that the Vancouver center will "allow the company to continue to recruit and retain highly skilled people affected by the immigration issues in the United States."

But company spokesman Lou Gellos said Microsoft's frustration with the U.S. government's visa policy wasn't the only reason for the expansion in Canada.

It is part of a larger program to diversify software development outside of Microsoft headquarters in Redmond, Washington, Gellos said.

The company has operations in North Carolina, Ireland, Denmark and Israel, and has already announced plans for sites in Boston and Bellevue, Washington.

We would be opening this center in Vancouver even if this visa situation didn't exist," Gellos said.

Still, U.S. interest in placing workers in Canada has risen since the beginning of April, when Washington announced there would be a severe visa shortage this year.

The United States grants about 85,000 H-1B visas annually to workers with skills in specialized fields. A record 150,000, requests, or nearly double the annual quota, were filed on just the first day applications were accepted for this year's allotment.

"Microsoft and other companies have been saying for a long time, 'If you make it so difficult for U.S. companies to bring in talented foreign national that they need, companies are going to fill those positions abroad,"' said Ted Ruthizer, who runs the business immigration practice for the U.S. law firm Kramer Levin Naftalis and Frankel.

"This is just the fulfillment of this promise," Ruthizer said.

Green said Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal are poised to get the most jobs as a result of the U.S. visa restrictions.

Vancouver, Canada's third-largest city, is only about three hours' drive from Microsoft's headquarters, and is already a popular destination for immigrants.

Efforts to ease restrictions on the U.S. work visa system were dealt a blow last week when the Senate killed President George W. Bush's planned overhaul of the country's immigration policy.

The bill's supporters say Congress is unlikely to revisit the issue until after the November 2008 election.

cessua
07-06-2007, 12:42 PM
Microsoft to set up R&D center in Canada due to broken immigration system in US.

http://www.cbc.ca/cp/technology/070705/z070502A.html

abd
07-06-2007, 03:55 PM
Link: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Green_card_hopefuls_to_resort_to_Gandhigiri/articleshow/2183334.cms

saimrathi
07-06-2007, 03:55 PM
This is great coverage.. but in India..

Link: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Green_card_hopefuls_to_resort_to_Gandhigiri/articleshow/2183334.cms

tikka
07-06-2007, 03:57 PM
Link: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Green_card_hopefuls_to_resort_to_Gandhigiri/articleshow/2183334.cms

WASHINGTON: Hundreds of Indian high-skilled professionals in the US who have been on a roller coaster ride over the past month in their effort to get the green card will draw attention next week to their frustration -- with white flowers.

In a unique display of Gandhigiri -- a demonstratively peaceful Gandhian protest popularised in a recent Hindi movie -- scores of Indian H1-B visa holders who feel jilted by the abrupt changes in US immigration rules are planning to deluge US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Director Emilio Gonzalez with flowers on July 10.

Their peaceful venting stems from a June 12 USCIS notification that promised to fast track the green card process for tens of thousands of skilled foreign professionals and their spouses -- only to disappoint later. The announcement led to a stampede in countries such as India and China for obtaining birth certificates and other related documents needed for the process. Applicants spent thousands of dollars to meet the requirements and the deadline.

But on Monday, USCIS rolled back its notification, turning, according to the lobby group Immigration Voice, "a glimmer of hope into despair."

The idea of overwhelming the USCIS office in Washington DC with flowers arose from a fervid discussion on the bulletin boards of Immigration Voice where many skilled workers vent their frustration over the long drawn green card process. Although there were some dissenting voices which said such gestures would be wasted, proponents of this form of Gandhigiri said up to 200 people had signed by for the flowery protest.

According to some estimates from Immigration Voice and its supporters, the Green Card flap affects more than 100,000 skilled workers and their spouses and family in India. Each applicant for the fast tract process announced by USCIS last month is said to have spent upward of $ 2000 to submit documentation.

Except for the $ 325 filing fees which USCIS has said it will refund, the rest of the money, including towards attorney fees, medical exams, couriers etc is down the drain, several applicants said.

"I'd guess that with about 100,000 people filing along with at least one secondary applicant each, that's $ 400 million down the drain. That's not chump change," Vikas Chowdhry, an applicant who has been closely tracking the process, told ToI.

The bonanza for immigration lawyers and physicians who conduct medical fitness tests, who had a busier four weeks than normal, comes on top of millions of dollars of social security tax that the US government collects each year from temporary guest workers (including H1-B visa holders). These guest workers don't get a refund when they return home if they do not qualify or wish not to become permanent US residents.

The Indian government has been trying in vain to arrive at a 'totalisation agreement' with the US in this regard to refund the money. But Washington has been resisting it because without continuous contribution from new immigrants, the country's social security system would go bust.

The 'florid' protest aside, AILF, the litigation arm of the American Immigration Lawyers Association, is also considering filing a lawsuit against USCIS for possibly having violated federal regulations and precedents, apart from the personal trauma and stress caused to individuals.

satishku_2000
07-06-2007, 04:43 PM
http://www.newsobserver.com/news/story/628939.html


By Kristin Collins, Staff Writer
Many North Carolina residents have been caught up in an immigration snafu that has led a group of lawyers to sue the federal government.
People who had been waiting to apply for permanent residency were thrilled in mid-June, when the U.S. Department of State announced that a backlog of applications had been cleared. The department said that all those who were in the country on work visas and had met the requirements for permanent residency could apply in July.

Hundreds of thousands of legal immigrants across the country, many of whom had been waiting years to become eligible for so-called green cards, rushed to get in their applications.

But on Monday, the State Department said its initial announcement was wrong, and that no applications would be accepted until at least October. It's still unknown how many will be accepted then.

Those who had spent thousands of dollars and countless hours preparing their applications were devastated.

"It's unconscionable," said Jack Pinnix, a Raleigh immigration lawyer. "I can't even say how outrageous it is."

Pinnix is among several North Carolina immigration lawyers who said he had dozens of clients who submitted to costly medical exams, compiled reams of paperwork and paid the thousands in legal fees required to get their applications ready. Some canceled vacations, while others quickly returned from overseas trips so they could prepare their applications.

Vasudevan Raghavan, chief financial officer for the Soleil Group in Raleigh, said his nephew spent $6,000 to fly to India and quickly marry his fiance so that they could apply together.

"Usually a wedding, we arrange it with all the family. It's a big event," Raghavan said. "But the family could not even be there."

His nephew returned from the trip to find it was for nothing.

The Washington D.C.-based American Immigration Lawyers Association announced this week that it would file a class-action lawsuit against the federal Citizenship and Immigration Service, which accepts green card applications. The suit will demand that the agency accept applications from those that the government told they were eligible to apply.


Staff writer Kristin Collins can be reached at 919-829-4881 or kristin.collins@newsobserver.com.

gc_mania_03
07-06-2007, 10:43 PM
http://www.nationalreview.com/kudlow/kudlow200604041505.asp

On Digg.com

RACIST MYTH: Hispanics create less jobs than whites

Please go and digg this.

jags_e
07-06-2007, 11:38 PM
http://www.mercurynews.com/nationworld/ci_6316152

Lawsuit challenges green card delay
By SOPHIA TAREEN Associated Press Writer
Article Launched: 07/06/2007 07:02:32 PM PDT

CHICAGO—A woman is seeking class-action status for a lawsuit that claims the federal government violated her constitutional rights when it announced that no new employer-sponsored green card applications would be accepted until the fall.
The lawsuit was filed Friday in federal court by Gabriela Ptasinska, a Polish immigrant who has a temporary work visa sponsored through her job at an engineering consulting firm. It is among the first challenging the U.S. State Department's decision.
In June, the State Department announced that employment visa numbers were available for all people seeking employer-sponsored green cards, except unskilled workers. The announcement meant that as early as this past Monday, Citizenship and Immigration Services would begin accepting applications, which require a lengthy process including certified documents and medical exams.
But an update posted Monday on the State Department Web site said 60,000 such numbers were no longer available because of "the sudden backlog reduction efforts by Citizenship and Immigration Services offices during the past month," meaning no further applications would be authorized, effective immediately.
The department called the backlog reduction efforts an "unexpected action" and said employment visa numbers would be available Oct. 1.
Ptasinska—who flew from Chicago to Lincoln, Neb., on Monday in hopes of being among the first to submit a green card application—is seeking
a ruling that would keep the application from being rejected, according to her attorney Ira Azulay.
The lawsuit names several government officials and agencies, including the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, the U.S. Department of State and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.
State Department spokeswoman Leslie Phillips said that the agency does not comment on litigation. Calls to Citizenship and Immigration Services went unanswered.
Immigration groups like the American Immigration Lawyers Foundation claim thousands of people across the country have spent time and money on attorneys and the application.
Spokesman Tim Vettel said the foundation is in the process of preparing a similar lawsuit.

newbee7
07-07-2007, 12:35 AM
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/07/07/opinion/07sat1.html?hp

Thank you, NYT!!

ajm
07-07-2007, 12:53 AM
Editorial: Immigration Malpractice
Published: July 7, 2007

The prickliness and glacial ineptitude of the immigration system is old news to millions of would-be Americans. Immigrants who play by the rules know that the rules are stringent, arbitrary, expensive and very time-consuming. But even the most seasoned citizens-in-waiting were stunned by the nasty bait-and-switch the federal bureaucracy pulled on them this month. After encouraging thousands of highly skilled workers to apply for green cards, the government snatched the opportunity away.

The tease came in a bulletin issued by the State Department in June announcing that green cards for a wide range of skilled workers would be available to those who filed by July 2. That prompted untold numbers of doctors, medical technicians and other professionals, many of whom have lived here with their families for years, to assemble little mountains of paper. They got certified records and sponsorship documents, paid for medical exams and lawyers and sent their applications in. Many canceled vacations to be in the United States when their applications arrived, as the law requires.

Then they learned that the hope was effectively a hoax. The State Department had issued the bulletin to prod Citizenship and Immigration Services, the bureaucracy that handles immigration applications, to get cracking on processing them. The agency is notorious for fainting over paperwork — 182,694 green cards have been squandered since 2000 because it did not process them in time. That bureaucratic travesty is a tragedy, since the annual supply of green cards is capped by law, and the demand chronically outstrips supply. The State Department said it put out the bulletin to ensure that every available green card would be used this time.

After working through the weekend, the citizenship agency processed tens of thousands of applications. On Monday, the State Department announced that all 140,000 employment-based green cards had been used and no applications would be accepted.

Citizenship and Immigration Services, the definition of a hangdog bureaucracy, says the law forbids it to accept the applications. The American Immigration Lawyers Association says this interpretation is rubbish. It is preparing a class-action lawsuit to compel the bureaucracy to accept the application wave that it provoked.

The good news is that immigrants’ hope is pretty much unquenchable. Think of the hundreds of people standing in the rain in ponchos at Walt Disney World on Independence Day, joining the flood of new citizens now cresting across the country. They celebrated on July Fourth, but for many of them the magic date is July 30, when a new fee schedule for immigrants takes effect, drastically jacking up the cost of the American dream.

The collapse of immigration reform in the Senate showed the world what America thinks of illegal immigrants — it wants them all to go away. But the federal government, through bureaucratic malpractice, is sending the same message to millions of legal immigrants, too.

anilsal
07-07-2007, 12:58 AM
http://digg.com/politics/Immigration_Malpractice

pansworld
07-07-2007, 01:06 AM
This is an article I wrote for a local news paper which was not published.
====================================
Imagine. You are applying for a green card. You wait for 4 years and in some cases 8 years for your turn. You have lived here longer than that. You have been a law abiding individual. Your worst crime was getting a parking ticket or a speeding ticket. On June 15th you are told, "It is your turn. Go ahead and apply." You get all your paperwork in order. You spend two weeks getting your finances to the tune of three to four thousand dollars in place to pay the lawyer fee, the filing fee and medical checkup expenses. Double that amount if you have a family. If you are lucky you have the money in your savings account. If not, you get a loan or put it on your credit card. You hold off all other expenses. This is more important than everything else. Loan payments, a new car, a new house and even a long planned trip to a home country that is thousands of miles away that you visit once every two years. Your family is overjoyed. Your parents back home are overjoyed. Your relatives and friends send you congratulatory notes. The wait is finally over. Now there can be some certainty in your life. No more passing over promotions because it might jeopardize your green card. You can change your employer if you want. No more uncertainty of having the leave the country "within 10 days" if the company fires you. You feel liberated. The end is near. You are told you can apply anytime between July 1st and July 31st. There is plenty of time. It is June 29th. It's a Friday. "Monday I become eligible.", you remind yourself. Your paperwork is in order. Monday the wait will be over.

On Monday you are told, "Sorry you cannot apply." You have to wait for another three months and then "maybe", just "maybe" you can apply. And the fee will be almost double of what we charge now. First you are left bewildered. "Surely, It must be a mistake.", you think. But it is confirmed. You still cannot apply. Surprise now turns to anger. You are searching for answers. What happened? You find out that the agencies incharge of handling the green card adjudications, USCIS (part of DHS) and DOS have had a mixup somewhere. These agencies are overburdened with thousands of cases. You feel helpless. You suddenly realize that you are back to where you were. The wait is not over. The uncertainty is back.

What I have just described happened to thousands of legal immigrants trying to be part of the American Dream. Right before 4th of July. We do not want any sympathy. We have lived with this uncertainty for years. But put yourself in the shoes of these immigrants. Law abiding immigrants patiently waiting their turn for years. Not weeks. Not months. Years!!! Patient with an immigration system that needs substantial improvement. Patient with the constant wrangling of a Congress that gets their hopes up every year with promises of fixing the system only to be disappointed every year. Fearful of the anti-immigration voices that advocate a more severe system that could prevent you from applying altogether. Could there be a sterner test of patience? Could there be a sterner test of the desire to be a part of this society? But the legal immigrants are still silently waiting their turn. They are quietly hopeful.

As America celebrates its freedom this week, the legal immigrants are still waiting to be liberated from the shackles of a broken system. Does anyone care?

God Bless America.

gc_aspirant_prasad
07-07-2007, 01:09 AM
News & Observer link :
http://www.newsobserver.com/news/story/628939.html

pansworld
07-07-2007, 01:13 AM
This is an article I wrote for a local news paper which was not published.
====================================
Imagine. You are applying for a green card. You wait for 4 years and in some cases 8 years for your turn. You have lived here longer than that. You have been a law abiding individual. Your worst crime was getting a parking ticket or a speeding ticket. On June 15th you are told, "It is your turn. Go ahead and apply." You get all your paperwork in order. You spend two weeks getting your finances to the tune of three to four thousand dollars in place to pay the lawyer fee, the filing fee and medical checkup expenses. Double that amount if you have a family. If you are lucky you have the money in your savings account. If not, you get a loan or put it on your credit card. You hold off all other expenses. This is more important than everything else. Loan payments, a new car, a new house and even a long planned trip to a home country that is thousands of miles away that you visit once every two years. Your family is overjoyed. Your parents back home are overjoyed. Your relatives and friends send you congratulatory notes. The wait is finally over. Now there can be some certainty in your life. No more passing over promotions because it might jeopardize your green card. You can change your employer if you want. No more uncertainty of having the leave the country "within 10 days" if the company fires you. You feel liberated. The end is near. You are told you can apply anytime between July 1st and July 31st. There is plenty of time. It is June 29th. It's a Friday. "Monday I become eligible.", you remind yourself. Your paperwork is in order. Monday the wait will be over.

On Monday you are told, "Sorry you cannot apply." You have to wait for another three months and then "maybe", just "maybe" you can apply. And the fee will be almost double of what we charge now. First you are left bewildered. "Surely, It must be a mistake.", you think. But it is confirmed. You still cannot apply. Surprise now turns to anger. You are searching for answers. What happened? You find out that the agencies incharge of handling the green card adjudications, USCIS (part of DHS) and DOS had a mixup somewhere. These agencies are overburdened with thousands of cases. You feel helpless. You suddenly realize that you are back to where you were. The wait is not over. The uncertainty is back.

What I have just described happened to thousands of legal immigrants trying to be a part of the American Dream. Right before 4th of July. We do not want any sympathy. We have lived with this uncertainty for years. But put yourself in the shoes of these immigrants. Law abiding immigrants patiently waiting their turn for years. Not weeks. Not months. Years!!! Patient with an immigration system that needs substantial improvement. Patient with the constant wrangling of a Congress that gets their hopes up every year with promises of fixing the system only to be disappointed every year. Fearful of the anti-immigration voices that advocate a more severe system that could prevent you from applying altogether. Could there be a sterner test of patience? Could there be a sterner test of the desire to be a part of this society? But the legal immigrants are still silently waiting their turn. They are still quietly hopeful.

As America celebrates its freedom this week, the legal immigrants are still waiting to be liberated from the shackles of a broken system. Does anyone care?

God Bless America.

gc_aspirant_prasad
07-07-2007, 01:23 AM
Pansworld : dont be disheartened. Try reaching a staff reporter at your local paper, preferably someone who covers immigration issues & give them your story along with the other material like the news on MSFT, the lawsuit planned by AILF & also the one planted by the lady from Poland in Chicago, NY Times articles etc.

dupedinjuly
07-07-2007, 02:03 AM
Editorial
Immigration Malpractice
Published: July 7, 2007

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/07/07/op...=1&oref=slogin

aristotle
07-07-2007, 02:42 AM
Editorial
Immigration Malpractice
Published: July 7, 2007

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/07/07/op...=1&oref=slogin

Correct URL..

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/07/07/opinion/07sat1.html

saiimmi
07-07-2007, 10:27 AM
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/07/07/opinion/07sat1.html

Realized it is already posted. And so withdrew.

gc_mania_03
07-08-2007, 12:34 AM
Correct URL..

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/07/07/opinion/07sat1.html


The NYT Editorial is on reddit. Please go vote on it...

Search for immigration malpractice.

vjverma
07-08-2007, 10:13 AM
http://knowledge.wharton.upenn.edu/india/article.cfm?articleid=4205

asharda
07-09-2007, 09:56 AM
http://www.thnt.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070708/NEWS/707080467/1001

Not sure if this has been posted earlier. Admin, pls delete the message if this is a repeat.

asharda
07-09-2007, 09:58 AM
http://www.sacbee.com/110/story/262484.html, seems though this one requires a login. Here's the article

If you want to know what's really wrong with our immigration system, consider the July debacle at the Citizen and Immigration Service.

Individuals and businesses typically have to wait years to apply for "green cards" for permanent residency based on job skills. The backlogs have been so severe that an engineer from India or China has had to wait six years to apply for a green card. In other employment categories, the wait can be nine to 11 years. For people from the Philippines, the wait in some work categories is 22 years.

But then in the monthly Visa Bulletin issued June 13, the State Department said that employment-based visas would be available.

This set off a rush among sponsoring businesses and individuals who have waited in line for years to apply for green cards. Thousands prepared applications and mailed them in time for the immigration service to receive them by July 2, the first day of the application window.

Then on that very day, the State Department issued a "never mind" update, announcing that the 60,000 green cards it had expected to offer would no longer be available. The thousands who submitted applications will have their applications sent back to them.

As Los Angeles immigration attorney Carl Shusterman said last Tuesday, "We're right back to one, with scientists, engineers, teachers and health care workers having to wait in endless lines for employment-based visas."

Rep. Zoe Lofgren, D-San Jose, chairwoman of the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Immigration, Citizenship, Refugees, Border Security and International Law sent irate letters to the Secretary of State and Secretary of Homeland Security. She said that changing course midmonth is contrary to years of practice, would result in the loss of thousands of dollars already expended by sponsoring businesses and individuals to prepare applications and, more important, would "threaten the integrity and predictability of our immigration system."

This is no way to treat people who try to play by the rules.

The Citizenship and Immigration Services Ombudsman notes in his 2007 annual report to Congress that the nation has a "perpetual backlog" of employment-based green card applications. This backlog means that even green cards that should be available aren't used. This contributes to the backlog; if green cards are not issued in the year they are authorized, they are lost.

In 2006, more than 10,000 employment-based green cards were lost, even though the immigration service had 100,000 to 150,000 applications waiting to be processed. Since 1994, nearly 219,000 employment-based green cards have been lost because the immigration service isn't processing enough applications in a timely manner.

It gets worse. The funds appropriated by Congress to jumpstart a backlog elimination project expired Sept. 30. The backlog will continue.

In the long term, this country needs to increase the number of employment-based green cards to meet demand. But if the immigration service cannot even process applications in a timely fashion for the current numbers of employment-based green cards that are supposed to be available, what's the point?

In the short term, if Congress and the president do nothing else regarding immigration reform, they should at least make sure that the immigration service processes green card applications in timely fashion. The backlog is inexcusable and contributes to the nation's illegal immigration problem. If we want people to play by the rules, we have to make it possible for them to do so.

asharda
07-09-2007, 10:08 AM
http://www.thejournalnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070709/NEWS01/707090369/1019/NEWS03

Seems like the news is spreading

chanduv23
07-09-2007, 01:40 PM
http://www.charlotteconservative.com/index.php/2007/07/tolerating-illegals-is-discriminatory/

newbee7
07-10-2007, 08:38 AM
http://www.twincities.com/business/ci_6336222

Immigration Voice, a volunteer nonprofit that primarily exists online, representing skilled foreign workers applying for green cards, is supporting a flower campaign to protest what it called a "flip-flop." Borrowing a nonviolent move from a popular Indian film, it is urging members to send white flowers to USCIS director Emilio Gonzalez. The protest blooms are to arrive at immigration headquarters today.

english_august
07-10-2007, 08:41 AM
http://www.twincities.com/business/ci_6336222

Immigration Voice, a volunteer nonprofit that primarily exists online, representing skilled foreign workers applying for green cards, is supporting a flower campaign to protest what it called a "flip-flop." Borrowing a nonviolent move from a popular Indian film, it is urging members to send white flowers to USCIS director Emilio Gonzalez. The protest blooms are to arrive at immigration headquarters today.

Protest Blooms! I like that name

lsuk
07-10-2007, 09:47 AM
http://www.forbes.com/opinions/2007/07/05/litan-wadhwa-immigration-oped-cx_rel_0709litan.html

A really nice article!

newbee7
07-10-2007, 09:52 AM
http://blogs.ilw.com/gregsiskind/

gcforever
07-10-2007, 10:40 AM
http://www.twincities.com/business/ci_6336222

asharda
07-11-2007, 10:14 AM
http://home.businesswire.com/portal/site/google/index.jsp?ndmViewId=news_view&newsId=20070709006134&newsLang=en

Article

Azulay Horn & Seiden, LLC Files Class Action Lawsuit Against the US Government for Refusing to Accept Green Card Applications
CHICAGO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--

In the shadow of the debate about comprehensive immigration reform tens of thousands of skilled employment based immigrants awaiting their opportunity to legally apply for green cards have been unfairly denied the opportunity due to potential deliberate miscommunication – and an attempt to collect higher filing fees – from the U.S. Department of State and the and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), the agency that processes visa and citizenship requests.

On June 12, the State Department announced in its monthly Visa Bulletin that beginning July 2 and for at least the entire month of July, all skilled workers seeking employer-sponsored green cards would be eligible to apply. However, on July 2, the State Department announced that they were breaking with 30 years of tradition and issued an update claiming that no more green cards were available because “the sudden backlog reduction efforts by Citizenship and Immigration Services offices during the past month.” USCIS followed and said that as a result they were going to reject the green card applications of anyone who applied relying on the July Bulletin. This meant that the thousands of immigrants who followed the government’s instructions and obtained the correct paperwork actually had no chance to receive a green card.

In response, Azulay Horn & Seiden, LLC, the largest immigration law firm based in Chicago and fourth largest in the United States, on Friday July 6, filed a class-action law suit on behalf of its clients and all those like them, against Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, the Department of State, Secretary of Homeland Security Michael Chertoff, the Department of Homeland Security, and USCIS, and Emilio Gonzalez, and F. Gerard Heinauer of USCIS for announcing that they would refuse to accept the green card applications on behalf of the skilled workers. The suit seeks a ruling that would keep applications filed in accordance with the original July Visa Bulletin from being rejected.

Azulay Horn & Seiden is the first firm to act proactively and file a complaint. “These are legal immigrants who have followed all the rules,” explained Ira Azulay, CEO of the firm. “They are productive members of our society and deserve to be treated fairly by our federal government. The State Department and USCIS acted against their own rules and 30 years of historical practice when they updated the Visa Bulletin and reneged on their historical obligations. They need to be held accountable for their actions and do right by these people. Acting any other way sends the horrible message that following the rules is worthless.”

The representative plaintiff in the case is Chicagoan Gabriela Ptasinska, a native of Poland who is lawfully present in the United States on a non-immigrant visa, working as a land planner with Manhard Consulting, Ltd. Given the Bulletin, Ptasinska and thousands of legal immigrants across the country worked to obtain the necessary documentation for their chance to receive a green card only to have it snatched away on July.

“I am a law-abiding, hardworking member of American society and have worked relentlessly to lawfully become a permanent resident of America,” said Ptasinska. “Now I feel like the rug has been pulled out from under me. I held-up my end of the bargain by doing everything the government told me to do, but USCIS did not keep their word.”

Mr. Azulay is available to discuss with the media the class-action suit and the impact of the government’s recent actions. A copy of the complaint in the matter of Gabriela Ptasinska, on behalf of herself and all others similarly situated v. U.S. Dept. of State, Condoleezza Rice, U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security, Michael Chertoff, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Emilio Gonzalez, and F. Gerard Heinauer, Case No. 07 C 3795, can be downloaded from Azulay, Horn & Seiden’s website at http://www.ahslaw.com/documents/AHSLawsuit.pdf. People interested in joining the class can also visit the website to provide their information.

Azulay, Horn & Seiden, LLC (www.ahslaw.com) is Chicago’s largest immigration law firm and the fourth largest immigration firm in the country. AHS provides comprehensive US immigration legal services for businesses and individuals (including visa petitions, green card services, consular assistance, naturalization proceedings, immigration representation in all U.S. Courts, and appellate work), immigration consulting to businesses, as well as immigration related legal services (e.g. family law, criminal law). Its main office is located at 205 N. Michigan Ave., 40th Floor, Chicago, IL 60601, with other offices in Florida, Wisconsin, and Manila, Philippines. For more information contact them at 312.832.9200 or by email at info@ahslaw.com.

PrayForEveryone
07-11-2007, 10:45 AM
Here is the link:

http://www.glamsham.com/movies/features/07/jul/11_boman_irani_gandhigiri_isn_t_easy_but_works_in_ the_long_run.asp

In an eloquent display of 'Gandhigiri', unhappy Indian green card seekers sent hundreds of flowers to the US immigration agency to protest a last minute reversal in policy that would impede their way to permanent residency. Last week, the agencies- the Department of State & the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service- involved claimed that a communication gap and an overzealous attempt at reducing backlogs caused them to use up all available Green Cards for the current fiscal year by Monday, July 2, 2007, contradicting an earlier press release that they would honor applications through July 2007. The resulting discontent among applicants gained significant media attention across the United States and abroad, even striking a chord in Bollywood, the world’s largest movie industry.

Scores of highly-skilled professionals in the United States are sending flowers to the US Citizenship and Immigration Service in a symbolic act of "Gandhiism" or Gandhigiri, to demonstrate their displeasure and to request honoring of their Green Card applications filed in July. In response to this event, Vidhu Vinod Chopra, who produced the run-away successes "Munna Bhai MBBS", and "Lage Raho Munna Bhai" stated, "Mahatma Gandhi has influenced several personalities, including American Civil Rights Leader Martin Luther King, Jr. These young, law-abiding professionals have set out to strive for reform the right way- the Gandhigiri way." The theme of “Lage Raho Munna Bhai” centers on the usage of non-violent principles to win over difficult and non-co-operating entities. In the movies, character Munna Bhai wins over the tough Dr. Asthana by means of chain deliveries of flower bouquets. The sequel has revived Gandhian principles and popularized the concept of Gandhigiri- literally meaning a symbolic act of peaceful protest across South Asia and the UK.

Rajkumar Hirani, who has directed the Munna Bhai series, added "When you feel you have been wronged, you feel angry. The best way to overcome what you think is unjust, is to protest peacefully. Be nice to your opponent and let him see your point of view. My well-wishes go out to these educated, highly-skilled professionals who have abided by the law and have been eagerly waiting in line for their Green Cards for nearly ten years."

Boman Irani, who plays hardball in the popular series, shared his views – “Gandhigiri is a strong tool to protest. You make your opponent see your point of view without losing your dignity. With aggression, one usually loses focus over the main issue, whereas good behavior makes the other person open up a dialogue. What’s key is to keep the efforts ongoing – Gandhigiri isn’t easy, but works in the long run!”

In the series, the film personalities shared their solidarity with Immigration Voice, a not-for-profit organization started by Aman Kapoor that strives for employment-based skilled immigration reform in the United States. The group has grown to over 15,000 members since its inception in Dec 2005. “Expectations ran high among applicants. Says Kapoor, "Disconcert among highly-skilled professionals grew exponentially in the last few days. Several members, out of their own initiative, as part of discussions on our bulletin boards, decided to organize a peaceful protest in the Gandhigiri style to display their resentment.”

Dr. Emilio Gonzales, Director of the USCIS, announced in a press release on Monday that the agency would arrange for the flowers to be sent to recuperating service personnel.

saimrathi
07-11-2007, 11:31 PM
I guest most news media will cover Lady Bird Johnson's funeral on Saturday... what do we do to increase the media drive for the rally in San Jose??? :confused:


http://www.reuters.com/article/topNews/idUSN1131261920070712

shrayus
07-11-2007, 11:57 PM
http://www.tribuneindia.com/2007/20070712/world.htm

Viktor
07-12-2007, 09:08 AM
Forget about H-1B. What we need is fast-track citizenship for every developer who wants to work in the United States
http://www.infoworld.com/article/07/07/12/28OPentinsight_1.html By David L. Margulius, InfoWorld, July 12, 2007


Every time I write about immigration or offshore IT talent I get flamed, so here goes – I'm putting on my thick skin.

A couple articles caught my eye this week: one about Microsoft opening an R&D facility in Canada to get around U.S. immigration restrictions, and one about Silicon Valley companies pulling back some jobs from India, where salaries are skyrocketing.

Both these articles just screamed out to me, We must open the floodgates for "IT immigrants," and fast. As Ronald Reagan said, "Tear down this wall."

Before you start cussing me out, some disclaimers: I was born in the United States and speak English only, but all four of my grandparents came over on a boat (mostly steerage). So I'm biased toward the power of immigrants to make the United States a better place. I'm also not a developer, so I don't view developers worldwide as competition for my job (just the zillion starving writers out there, but that's another story).

So here's my proposal: Let's roll out the red carpet and try to get as many developers coming to the United States as the total number of people who normally enter the country each year (about 1.3 million legally or illegally, according to the Center for Immigration Studies). If they can prove they can code, let's give them immediate citizenship, free food, coupons for free movie rentals, whatever, to get them to come and stay (and while we're at it, let's give free food and coupons to all American-born developers too).

By "immediate citizenship," I'm talking about a LAMP (Linux Apache MySQL PHP) visa with no expiration and a clear path to full citizenship. If you ask me, the H-1B visa debate is ridiculous – the numbers are too small to be meaningful, the visa creates a group of noncitizens companies can take advantage of, and the result is uncertainty for potential IT immigrants, not a long-term incentive.

Why so radical? The United States isn't growing enough technologists organically through our education system to compete, so let's acquire and assimilate them. They'll create growth, jobs, companies; pay taxes; and help raise our national standard of living. Or they'll go somewhere else and do it there.

If Microsoft is so desperate for foreign talent that it will open a major R&D lab across the border in Vancouver just to skirt U.S. immigration laws, that should tell you something. IT talent, like water, will flow around obstacles. We have a dam when we need a canal.

What about U.S. companies pulling back jobs from India? Doesn't that mean we're already competitive enough and don't need more developers here? Far from it. All that means is that India's talent base is maturing and the world is turning to it for IT talent, investing capital and building businesses there. It means the United States is now relatively less attractive to those Indian developers than it was even one year ago. Let's drop the xenophobia, folks, and start viewing IT immigration as the huge opportunity it is.

Tantra
07-12-2007, 09:12 AM
Open the floodgates to IT immigration: Forget about H-1B. What we need is fast-track citizenship for every developer who wants to work in the United States
http://www.infoworld.com/article/07/07/12/28OPentinsight_1.html
By David L. Margulius
analyst@infoworld.com,letters@infoworld.com

Excerpts: By "immediate citizenship," I'm talking about a LAMP (Linux Apache MySQL PHP) visa with no expiration and a clear path to full citizenship. If you ask me, the H-1B visa debate is ridiculous – the numbers are too small to be meaningful, the visa creates a group of noncitizens companies can take advantage of, and the result is uncertainty for potential IT immigrants, not a long-term incentive.

Why so radical? The United States isn't growing enough technologists organically through our education system to compete, so let's acquire and assimilate them. They'll create growth, jobs, companies; pay taxes; and help raise our national standard of living. Or they'll go somewhere else and do it there.

Viktor
07-12-2007, 09:19 AM
Tancredo Announces 'Overdue' Immigration Reform
http://www.cnsnews.com/ViewPolitics.asp?Page=/Politics/archive/200707/POL20070712b.html, By Nathan Burchfiel, CNSNews.com Staff Writer, July 12, 2007


(CNSNews.com) - Rep. Tom Tancredo (R-Colo.) on Wednesday announced plans to introduce legislation that would overhaul the U.S. immigration system by placing tighter restrictions on legal immigration and increasing pressure on illegal immigrants currently in the country to leave.

"Throughout the immigration debate, out of touch amnesty-only critics of enforcement have tried to hide behind their cry of 'what is your solution?' Well this week we will show them and the president what immigration reform should look like and what the American people deserve," Tancredo said in a statement announcing the proposal.

Tentatively dubbed the Optimizing Visa Entry Rules and Demanding Uniformed Enforcement (OVERDUE) bill, Tancredo's proposal would "restor[e] America's immigration system to more traditional numbers and encourages the assimilation of America's most recent great wave."

Tancredo, a long-shot candidate for the 2008 Republican presidential nomination, acknowledged that his proposal "will undoubtedly be unpopular among the political elites, big business and big labor, but it is legislation that this country has been calling for, and I dare say, needs."

As Cybercast News Service previously reported, the Senate in June blocked a comprehensive immigration reform proposal that would have increased border and employer enforcement, created a guest worker program and offered a path to legalization to the estimated 12 million illegal immigrants currently living in the United States.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) declared the bill "dead" after Republicans, responding to a massive grassroots lobbying campaign from their base, blocked a measure to end debate on the proposal.

"Congress must take on the tough issues and follow through on what we've been sent out here to do and serve in the best interest of the people we represent," Tancredo said. "For too long the special interests and political heavyweights have tried to sell us on the need for an amnesty and justify their refusal to enforce the law."

Tancredo's proposal uses indirect measures to encourage undocumented residents to leave on their own. The bill would eliminate "chain migration," tighten the employment-based green card category, and limit automatic birthright citizenship to those with at least one parent who is a citizen or legal permanent resident.

Other provisions of the proposal include suspending the Visa Waiver Program and prohibiting states from granting in-state tuition to illegal immigrants, according to a summary provided by Tancredo's office.

It also requires federal immigration authorities to assist state and local law enforcement officials in enforcing immigration laws. The bill does not include provisions addressing the construction of a fence along the U.S. border with Mexico, because the funding for the fence has already been approved by Congress and including it in this bill would be "redundant and unnecessary."

The final version of the bill is still under construction by Tancredo's office and should be submitted to Congress later this week.
'Status quo is a problem that must be addressed'

Carlos Espinosa, a spokesman for Tancredo, acknowledged in an email to Cybercast News Service that "considering the nature of this Democrat Congress, it is fairly unlikely that this bill will truly pick up steam."

"However," Espinosa added, "it is important to keep talking on this issue because while the Senate amnesty would have been a step in the wrong direction, the status quo is also a problem that needs to be addressed."

Michele Waslin, director of immigration policy research for the National Council of La Raza, a Hispanic rights group, agreed with Tancredo's disapproval of the status quo, but expressed serious reservations about the policies he proposed.

"The Senate voted for the status quo," Waslin said, referring to the rejection of the bill in June.

"They clearly didn't provide a solution and the immigration problems continue to exist. What we're seeing is people from all levels of government trying to fill that vacuum and make a statement about undocumented immigration but unfortunately none of these proposals offer a real solution, a real practical, fair solution to our problem," she added.

Waslin, who hasn't read the proposal because a final version has not been released, said that based on Tancredo's own summary of the bill, it's "a proposal that is not a solution to our current immigration problems."

She called the proposal "anti-family" because of the restrictions it would place on so-called "chain migration" and limiting family-based movement to nuclear families.

Waslin also criticized the proposed tightening of employment-based green cards.

"American employers need workers and currently there simply are no visas available for workers doing many categories of work, and so by further restricting employment immigration you're denying businesses the workers they need and putting increased pressure on the border," she said.

"The more resources we put into enforcement, the larger the number of undocumented immigrants in this country," Waslin argued. "Further restricting legal immigration and adding more enforcement really does not seem like a practical or realistic solution to this problem."

Tancredo's spokesman said making it more difficult to move into the United States legally would not increase motivation for illegal border crossings.

"History has shown that a decrease in legal immigration goes hand in hand with a decrease in illegal immigration," Espinosa said. "Further, once our borders are properly secured, and we enforce our laws to the fullest extent, illegal immigration will also decrease."

andy007
07-12-2007, 10:44 AM
http://video.state.gov/index.jsp?fr_story=1a4501963331593ea3f67cf9a1a8e4a f646e7989

gimme Green!!
07-12-2007, 11:13 AM
I see the video is 25 minutes. Can you please summarize in 2 sentences what this is or atleast point to where in the video our issues are being discussed. Thanks in advance.

http://video.state.gov/index.jsp?fr_story=1a4501963331593ea3f67cf9a1a8e4a f646e7989

saimrathi
07-12-2007, 11:14 AM
Please summarize the contents of the video.. I have been watching it for the last 12 mins and its only about Iraq so far.. :confused:

http://video.state.gov/index.jsp?fr_story=1a4501963331593ea3f67cf9a1a8e4a f646e7989

gimme Green!!
07-12-2007, 11:15 AM
"History has shown that a decrease in legal immigration goes hand in hand with a decrease in illegal immigration," Espinosa said. "Further, once our borders are properly secured, and we enforce our laws to the fullest extent, illegal immigration will also decrease."

Sheer nonsence. Does Tancredo seriously think limiting legal would prevent people from jumping the wall illegally? Bull crap!!! They are two seperate issues. Secure borders and that would limit illegal. What has that got to do with legal, which is based on lengthy paperwork and bureaucratic procedures??

As someone said, it is Tancredo trying to score brownie points to keep his presidential hopes alive.

saimrathi
07-12-2007, 11:25 AM
There is nothing in this video about our issue... Here is the link to the text..
http://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/dpb/2007/jul/88103.htm

http://video.state.gov/index.jsp?fr_story=1a4501963331593ea3f67cf9a1a8e4a f646e7989

brb2
07-12-2007, 12:00 PM
You might find this interesting. The article is written by a person of South Asian origin.

http://thegig.blogs.fortune.com/2007/07/12/conversations-a-cautionary-tale-from-30000-feet/#comments

chapper
07-12-2007, 12:53 PM
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Cities/Microsoft_to_set_up_university_in_city/articleshow/2196363.cms

Microsoft Corporation has chosen Bangalore for its first-ever exclusive and independent educational venture in the world. The company will set up a university in the city to impart high-end computer education. The university may well be India's first run by a multinational company.

manderson
07-12-2007, 04:13 PM
http://www.portfolio.com/views/columns/chartistry/2007/07/06/Skilled-Migrants-Needed

this is a magazine targeted towards the jet-set corporate exec/ hedge fund/ investment banker ppl type...

manderson
07-12-2007, 04:19 PM
You might find this interesting. The article is written by a person of South Asian origin.

http://thegig.blogs.fortune.com/2007/07/12/conversations-a-cautionary-tale-from-30000-feet/#comments

This was written by Nadira A. Hira. I wonder if she is realted to the infamous Ron Hira?

chanduv23
07-12-2007, 04:23 PM
https://www.murthy.com/news/n_fiasco.html

Pineapple
07-13-2007, 09:41 AM
Good coverage on NPR Morning Edition, July 13, 2007.

Link is:

http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=11945381

tapukakababa
07-13-2007, 10:56 AM
http://www.jsonline.com/story/index.aspx?id=632302

sanjay02
07-13-2007, 05:23 PM
Flower Power

Immigration Voice's follow-up to its successful flower campaign
is a San Jose, CA rally on Saturday, July 14, 2007
http://www.touchdownusa.org/SanJose/SanJoseRallyPR.pdf
The VB Gate flower campaign has to date delivered about 1,000 bouquets
to USCIS Secretary Gonzalez. USCIS Secretary Gonzalez has sent the
flowers to recovering service members in area hospitals.
Immigration Voice responded:

"We welcome the fact that Dr. Gonzalez acknowledged
the symbolic gesture of our protest and are overjoyed that these
flowers will brighten the day of our injured service brethren. It
is their sacrifice for American freedom that has made this
country great and such a desirable destination for multitude of
people from around the world."
http://www.touchdownusa.org/pdf/Response.pdf

Rep. Lofgren deserves to be commended for her leadership on demanding
accountability from USCIS on the VB Gate debacle. Sadly, the
Senate remains silent on the matter. Immigration Voice postings
suggest that big news is expected shortly, Immigration Daily
suspects the news will come in the form of a regulatory change.
Read Immigration Daily to stay on top of the latest VB Gate
developments.

We welcome readers to share their opinion and ideas with us by
writing to mailto:editor@ilw.com.

Googler
07-14-2007, 12:05 AM
Macaca

You do incredible service digging up articles and posting them here -- but I have one gentle request -- just use regular bolding or italics to emphasize lines of text. The multicolor thing is very very distracting and hard to follow -- it actually makes the text harder to read. I know you want people to focus on the juicy lines -- but bold text is enough for that.

Thanks again,
Googler

newbee7
07-14-2007, 01:30 AM
http://www.businessweek.com/bwdaily/dnflash/content/jul2007/db20070713_687551.htm?chan=top+news_top+news+index _businessweek+exclusives


Engineers, computer programmers, and tech workers aren't known for outspoken collective action and political protest. But on July 14, up to 1,000 high-skilled, legal immigrants will gather in San Jose, Calif., to express their outrage at the U.S. government's failure to deliver on a promise to hasten the processing of their green-card applications. Many of these immigrants came to the U.S. from India on visas and have been stuck in what they say is an interminable wait for permanent residency and the freedoms it brings

newbee7
07-14-2007, 01:32 AM
the BW article also mentions the planned San Jose rally...

rama0083
07-14-2007, 04:31 AM
Macaca

You do incredible service digging up articles and posting them here -- but I have one gentle request -- just use regular bolding or italics to emphasize lines of text. The multicolor thing is very very distracting and hard to follow -- it actually makes the text harder to read. I know you want people to focus on the juicy lines -- but bold text is enough for that.

Thanks again,
Googler

I for one think that Macaca's use of color is very useful and not at all distracting.

saimrathi
07-14-2007, 09:33 AM
http://www.businessweek.com/bwdaily/dnflash/content/jul2007/db20070713_687551.htm?campaign_id=rss_topStories

The Gandhi Protests
Denied the permanent U.S. residency they'd been promised, high-skilled workers are taking to the streets in nonviolent protest

gcnirvana
07-14-2007, 02:45 PM
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/07/15/us/politics/15immig.html?_r=1&ref=us&oref=slogin

A Little-Known Group Claims a Victory on Immigration
By ROBERT PEAR
Published: July 15, 2007

WASHINGTON, July 14 — When a comprehensive immigration bill collapsed last month on the Senate floor, it was a victory for a small group that had been lobbying Congress for a decade to reduce the number of immigrants — legal and illegal — in the United States.

The group, Numbers USA, tracked every twist and turn of the bill. Its members flooded the Senate with more than a million faxes, sent through the organization’s Web site. It supplied arguments and information to senators opposing the bill.

“It was a David-and-Goliath struggle,” said Roy H. Beck, the president of Numbers USA, who had been preparing for this moment since 1996, when he wrote a book titled “The Case Against Immigration.”

Supporters of the bill included President Bush, the United States Chamber of Commerce, the high-tech industry, the Roman Catholic Church, many Hispanic organizations, farmers, restaurants, hotels and the construction industry.

“The bill had support from the opinion elite in this country,” Mr. Beck said. “But we built a grass-roots army, consumed with passion for a cause, and used the power of the Internet to go around the elites and defeat a disastrous amnesty bill.”

The measure, which died on June 28, would have offered legal status and a path to citizenship to millions of illegal immigrants and created a new temporary worker program while increasing border security.

“Numbers USA initiated and turbocharged the populist revolt against the immigration reform package,” said Frank Sharry, executive director of the National Immigration Forum, a pro-immigrant advocacy group. “Roy Beck takes people who are upset about illegal immigration for different reasons, including hostility to Latino immigrants, and disciplines them so their message is based on policy rather than race-based arguments or xenophobia.”

Representative Brian P. Bilbray, Republican of California and chairman of the Immigration Reform Caucus, said, “We’re involved in weekly discussions with Numbers USA and other immigration-control groups as part of a team effort.”

Numbers USA had fewer than 50,000 members at the end of 2004, but now counts more than 447,000, with an increase of 83 percent since January alone.

Turning to the next phase of the debate, those members will push for enforcement of existing laws and new measures to curb the employment of illegal immigrants.

“Our No. 1 legislative goal is to begin a system of mandatory workplace verification, to confirm that every employee is a United States citizen or an alien authorized to work in this country,” said Rosemary E. Jenks, director of government relations at Numbers USA.

The organization wants to reduce immigration — as Mr. Beck says in the subtitle of his book — for “moral, economic, social and environmental reasons.”

He contends that immigrants and their children are driving population growth, which he says is gobbling up open space, causing urban sprawl and creating more traffic congestion.

Moreover, Mr. Beck asserts that immigrants and temporary workers, by increasing the supply of labor, have depressed wages in industries from meatpacking to information technology. Numbers USA has worked most closely with conservative Republicans, but in recent weeks has built alliances with Democrats who share the concern.

Numbers USA keeps a scorecard showing every vote by every member of Congress on immigration-related issues since 1989. The group assigns a letter grade to each member.

Lawmakers who received an A-plus were all Republicans and included Representatives J. Dennis Hastert of Illinois and Tom Tancredo of Colorado, a presidential candidate. The lowest grades — F-minuses — went to Democrats, including Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Representative Joe Baca of California, chairman of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus.

Numbers USA objects to proposals that increase the number of legal or illegal immigrants. It steers clear of debates over the allocation of visas.

“It does not matter to us whether a visa goes to a high-tech worker, a farm worker or the sibling of a U.S. citizen,” Mr. Beck said.

Numbers USA is one of many organizations fostered by John H. Tanton, an ophthalmologist from Michigan who has also championed efforts to protect the environment, limit population growth and promote English as an official language.

Critics like the Southern Poverty Law Center and Representative Chris Cannon, Republican of Utah, have described Dr. Tanton as a father of the anti-immigration movement. Mark A. Potok, a senior researcher at the law center, called Numbers USA the “kinder, gentler side of that movement.”

Mr. Beck said Numbers USA had been independent of Dr. Tanton since 2002. On the group’s Web site, Mr. Beck cautions against “immigrant bashing” and says, “Even illegal aliens deserve humane treatment as they are detected, detained and deported.”

In the fight over the Senate bill, Numbers USA had daily conference calls with conservative groups like the Heritage Foundation and the Eagle Forum.

For tax purposes, Numbers USA has two arms, an educational foundation and an advocacy group that lobbies Congress. Together, Mr. Beck said, they have a budget of $3 million this year, but will probably raise and spend $4.5 million.

Mr. Beck said that in the past the group received about two-thirds of its money from foundations like the Colcom Foundation of Pittsburgh and the Weeden Foundation in New York. Many of these foundations have an interest in conservation.

Numbers USA has raised the rest of its money from individual contributors over the Internet. The group collects detailed information on its members — their ethnic background, politics, religious affiliations, occupations and concerns — so it can choose the most effective advocates on any particular issue.

In a survey question on religion, the group said the information would be useful because many lawmakers were likely to respond better to people with “a very similar religious worldview.”

“This is our citizen army,” Mr. Beck said, pointing to a map that showed members of his group in every Congressional district.

GCard_Dream
07-14-2007, 04:06 PM
Several people have requested this with no result. I completely agree with you that it is a little distracting and harder to read. Sometimes I find it easier to just skip it than having to read it, no offense however. I wouldn't mind bold and italics, however.

Despite the colour, I believe Macaca is doing a great service to IV community. Gotta give him that.

Macaca

You do incredible service digging up articles and posting them here -- but I have one gentle request -- just use regular bolding or italics to emphasize lines of text. The multicolor thing is very very distracting and hard to follow -- it actually makes the text harder to read. I know you want people to focus on the juicy lines -- but bold text is enough for that.

Thanks again,
Googler

Legal
07-14-2007, 05:27 PM
Several people have requested this with no result. I completely agree with you that it is a little distracting and harder to read. Sometimes I find it easier to just skip it than having to read it, no offense however. I wouldn't mind bold and italics, however.

Despite the colour, I believe Macaca is doing a great service to IV community. Gotta give him that.

He wouldn't listen.

smohan
07-15-2007, 08:00 AM
I do not mind macaca's present writing style....this way, Macaca is rather helping what to read and what to skip...or read faster.

Macaca doing a great service...Thanks for your hard work Macaca.

hmm...I wish Macaca had a more friendly name....:)

He wouldn't listen.

gsc999
07-15-2007, 08:21 PM
I do not mind macaca's present writing style....this way, Macaca is rather helping what to read and what to skip...or read faster.

Macaca doing a great service...Thanks for your hard work Macaca.

hmm...I wish Macaca had a more friendly name....:)
-
I support Macaca, the highlights help me focus on important parts of the story the color help me distinguish negative or positive comments

akv123
07-15-2007, 11:50 PM
I do not mind macaca's present writing style....this way, Macaca is rather helping what to read and what to skip...or read faster.

Macaca doing a great service...Thanks for your hard work Macaca.

hmm...I wish Macaca had a more friendly name....:)

I do not like colored text, but this is my personal choice. I suggest, cut & paste the article to word document and chose your own suitable style of text, color and fonts rather than requesting author to lose its own style.

Hope it will help everyone.

jasmin45
07-16-2007, 08:28 AM
http://www.usinpac.com/news_details.asp?News_ID=60

They already met Senator Conryn and Lofgren regarding CIR.
For What? These guys are good for nothing!.. they must have taken a pic with the Hon. Reps. :)

virtual55
07-18-2007, 01:47 AM
http://www.reuters.com/article/newsOne/idUSN1727465820070718

virtual55
07-18-2007, 02:11 AM
http://lofgren.house.gov/PRArticle.aspx?NewsID=1814

Karthikthiru
07-18-2007, 02:12 AM
Check this news on BusinessWeek

http://www.businessweek.com/bwdaily/dnflash/content/jul2007/db20070717_923080.htm?chan=top+news_top+news+index _businessweek+exclusives

Karthik

buehler
07-18-2007, 08:26 AM
Gandhigiri in Silicon Valley wins the day

http://www.rediff.com/money/2007/jul/18spec.htm

BEC_fog
07-18-2007, 07:25 PM
http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,1644716,00.html

franklin
07-19-2007, 01:15 AM
http://www.businessweek.com/bwdaily/dnflash/content/jul2007/db20070718_877619.htm?chan=top+news_top+news+index _businessweek+exclusives

How Skilled Immigrants Found a Voice...

Also, some photos from the rally are there too.

superdude
07-19-2007, 02:01 AM
http://www.businessweek.com/bwdaily/dnflash/content/jul2007/db20070718_877619.htm?chan=top+news_top+news+index _businessweek+exclusives

How Skilled Immigrants Found a Voice...

Also, some photos from the rally are there too.
The protesters had a police escort during their march, as is typical for the city of San Jose. But the authorities had little to worry about from this group. "We were told we were one of the most orderly protests they've ever had," says Mitchell.

franklin
07-19-2007, 02:54 AM
The protesters had a police escort during their march, as is typical for the city of San Jose. But the authorities had little to worry about from this group. "We were told we were one of the most orderly protests they've ever had," says Mitchell.

Here's the photo link http://images.businessweek.com/ss/07/07/0719_gandhi_rally/index_01.htm

Its a great article altogether, there are some minor misquotes (at least on my part) - but I'm trying to get them corrected. For example, they messed up Pappu with Logiclife on a photo ;)

seattleboy
07-19-2007, 04:42 AM
Thanks for taking the initiative

nonimmi
07-20-2007, 12:52 PM
http://www.computerworld.com/action/article.do?command=viewArticleBasic&articleId=9027404

nk2006
07-20-2007, 02:34 PM
The details of AILF's law suit that could have been filed (had USCIS/DOS had not fixed the July bulletin fiasco). Its interesting to read the detials of plaintiffs - there are 47 of them from different technical backgrounds and different countries. The points raised are an interesting reading:
http://www.ailf.org/lac/visab-complaint07.pdf

riva2005
07-20-2007, 02:58 PM
The details of AILF's law suit that could have been filed (had USCIS/DOS had not fixed the July bulletin fiasco). Its interesting to read the detials of plaintiffs - there are 47 of them from different technical backgrounds and different countries. The points raised are an interesting reading:
http://www.ailf.org/lac/visab-complaint07.pdf

Was it all about money ? Look at item (f) in the second last page.

They probably wanted to line their pockets with lawsuit money from USCIS. And also, it took them this long to draft this much ? I thought they were "litigation specialists". They took 20 days to prepare this little piece of document ? What were they negotiating with USCIS ? Money for themselves ?

If this was just about allowing people to file and if they believed all along that lawsuit is the only way to do it, then what were they doing until July 17th ? Holding hands with USCIS lawyers ?

Gosh...I just cant believe I was thinking that AILA wanted to help us. No where they want USCIS to pay for medical exams and unneccesary travel of applicants. But they did want USCIS to pay for lawyer's fees of plaintiffs (which is them).

Hey AILA, how about you try to make an honest living eh ? And how about publicly disclosing that we are seeking plaintiffs so that we can line our own pockets and also, by the way, you wont be getting a penny out of lawsuit if we win and that money will go only to us ?

gsc999
07-20-2007, 08:42 PM
Aired on Thu, Jul 19, 2007 -- 6:30 PM
Pacific Time 2007-07-19 : Green Card Applicants Protest

http://www.kqed.org/epArchive/R707191830/d

paskal
07-21-2007, 12:02 PM
story is on washington post now

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/07/21/AR2007072100432.html

franklin
07-21-2007, 04:40 PM
Green-card turnaround restores faith (http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/editorials/la-ed-canal21jul21,1,2173283.story) By L.A. Chung (lchung@mercurynews.com or (408) 920-5280), 07/21/2007
[/COLOR][/FONT]

Here is a good link for the San Jose Mercury editorial http://www.mercurynews.com/lachung/ci_6431046?nclick_check=1

The original link goes to the LA times one

prioritydate
07-23-2007, 10:06 PM
Don't post any news article that even smell like illegal immigrants. We don't want to promote or sympathize with illegals. :mad:

anilsal
07-23-2007, 10:39 PM
http://techrepublic.com.com/5208-6230-0.html;jsessionid=DEKodaVOKKdgtI_1pr?forumID=102&threadID=230563&start=0

Sanity check: Is the U.S. losing its role as the world leader in information technology?

makemygc
07-24-2007, 10:38 AM
Promise of ID Cards Is Followed by Peril of Arrest for Illegal Immigrants (http://www.nytimes.com/2007/07/23/nyregion/23raid.html?adxnnl=1&adxnnlx=1185223994-8JufDGTpN+ndKbZjnwew0A) By NINA BERNSTEIN (http://www.nytimes.com/gst/emailus.html) New York Times, July 23, 2007

NEW HAVEN — Under his family’s homemade shrine to the Virgin of Guadalupe, Alan Flores, 8, spoke softly about the morning last month when federal immigration agents entered his home.



Can you please explain why are you posting these news on illegals here. What is that to do with IV?

crystal
07-24-2007, 12:27 PM
http://www.ilw.com/articles/2007,0724-endelman.shtm

http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/Corporate_Trends/Indians_for_immigrant_visas_confused/articleshow/2225478.cms

kumhyd2
07-26-2007, 12:06 AM
Add this to many of those articles that mention how immigrants can add value

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/N...ow/2234253.cms

WASHINGTON: Sandeep Shukla, an Indian American researcher on embedded computers said to be the “brain” behind many everyday mechanisms, is now developing embedded software code generation for space missions.

Embedded computers are used in wireless devices, cars, climate control systems, traffic signals, washing machines, as well as complex systems including space mission controls, avionics and weapons systems.

“The makers of the Airbus 380 claim to have all control software automatically generated,” Shukla was quoted as saying by EurekaAlert. “We should develop similar technology to increase productivity and safety of embedded software-based space systems.”

He is also interested in nano-scale chips. “Because nano-scale devices are so small and the manufacturing process is affected by so much variation and inaccuracy, a significant percentage of computer chip devices are defective,” he said. Shukla is attempting to create novel tools and techniques to help solve these problems.

kumhyd2
07-26-2007, 12:14 AM
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/HealthScience/Indian_brain_powers_Nasas_mission/articleshow/2234090.cms

Indian brain powers Nasa's mission

RENTON (WASHINGTON): It will once again be a story of an Indian brain powering an important Nasa flight. When Nasa’s much-awaited Phoenix mission to Mars lifts off from Cape Canaveral in Florida on August 3 this year, it will be a cause for celebration in Gujarat again.

The reason: one of the engineers who is playing a key role in this programme is Gujarat-born 40-year-old Prasun Desai, an MS in astronautics with a PhD in aerospace engineering from an US University. Indian-American astronaut, Sunita Williams, is also from Gujarat.

Apart from various aspects of the Phoenix flight to the Red Planet, Desai is mainly associated with its entry, descent and landing phase which will tentatively take place on May 25,2008.

This will be the most challenging part of the mission. Boeing’s contribution to the project is the rocket which will carry Phoenix.

Desai, who was earlier connected with Spirit and Opportunity missions to Mars in January 2004, explained that Phoenix is designed to study the history of water and habitability potential in the Martian arctic’s ice-rich soil.

“In the continuing pursuit of water on Mars, the poles are a good place to probe, as water ice is found there. Phoenix will land on the icy northern pole of Mars. During the course of the 150-day Martian day mission, Phoenix will deploy its robotic arm and dig trenches into the layers of water,” he said.

He said that Phoenix is a fixed lander. This means that once it lands, it cannot move to another location unlike Spirit and Opportunity. “Therefore, the selection of the landing site is very important in achieving the objectives of the mission. This flight is the first that a Martian mission will land in the pole region of the Red Planet, and there is less familiarity with this part,” he said.

With regards to its entry, descent and landing, he said it will be what he called a “soft landing”. That is unlike Spirit, and Opportunity, which used airbags to cushion the landing during all the bounces that occurred, Phoenix will fire retro rocket engines starting at approximately 800 metres above the surface and continuously fire them to slow its descent to achieve near zero at landing, he said.

sanjay02
07-26-2007, 08:53 PM
This was posted in the weekly newsletter

2. Kudos : Together We Did It! by Sheela Murthy

We at the Murthy Law Firm have been receiving messages of thanks from many of our clients and others for keeping them well informed and for any part we played in the recent concessions from the U.S. Department of State (DOS) and the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) with regard to honoring the July Visa Bulletin and again accepting employment-based I-485 (Adjustment of Status) filings. We appreciate the kind words and compliments of so many of you for our involvement in the recent decision of July 17, 2007. I want to assure you that, although we each contributed, without the direct involvement and threats of Congresswoman Zoë Logfren, and the collective efforts of the pro-immigrant community, this effort could not have successfully concluded in the reversal of their position - and certainly not so quickly!

For those who are not familiar with the American legal system or process, who may be under the impression that one particular person or event led to the government's reversal, I assure you that many players were involved in making the impossible possible. Following are some of the major players, whom I believe helped make this a reality.

First, Congresswoman's Zoë Logfren's letters to Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Chertoff, first dated July 3, 2007 followed by a very strong letter, closely resembling a subpoena of documents, on July 11, 2007. The July 11, 2007 letter demanded an extensive list of documents, including all eMails or other communication related to every aspect of the July Visa Bulletin fiasco. Had the USCIS's actions been allowed to stand, tens of thousands of legal foreign national employees and their families would have been denied the opportunity to file the last stage of the papers for their "green cards" in July 2007.

While Congresswoman's Lofgren's July 3, 2007 letter to the USCIS and DOS did not receive a timely response, it was clear that the second letter could not be ignored. The clear direction of that letter and the result of a failure to respond would likely have been devastating and potentially led to senior DOS, DHS, and USCIS officials having to face Congressional investigation for their actions relating to the July Visa Bulletin.

Also making a great impact were the concerted efforts of the pro-immigrant community, including the ongoing discussions and negotiations of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) with senior level officials at DOS and USCIS and the American Immigration Law Foundation's (AILF's) preparation of a class action lawsuit against the DOS and the USCIS. AILF genuinely believed that they had proper grounds to win this lawsuit. They had completed drafting the complaint to file the case, as per their website. The government appears to have believed that if they litigated against a convincing case brought by a strong group of advocates supported by a national organization and lost, it would be viewed as millions of dollars of taxpayers' money wasted in needless litigation caused by the government's lack of transparency in their legal process and systems. Those interested may review AILF's Complaint Statement, as well as their Complaint.

Other pro-immigrant advocates, individuals and groups, also organized peaceful protests by sending flowers and signing petitions protesting the impropriety of the USCIS's actions and insisting upon a reversal. There was major print media coverage of these events, including the delivery of the many flower bouquets to USCIS Director Emilio Gonzalez on or around July 10, 2007. There was a petition from Immigrants' List, on which many worked together to obtain over 10,000 signatures within a couple of days. This was delivered to Mr. Chertoff on July 16, 2007. Thank you to each of you who signed the petition and forwarded it to your families and employers to obtain those signatures in record time. Public outrage was admittedly significant in the USCIS decision to reverse its earlier decision, as noted in the USCIS Announcement of July 17, 2007. For my part, I sent my own letter to DHS Secretary Chertoff, outlining the legal issues and the problems of highly-skilled, legal individuals and families and expressing the sentiments of many in the pro-immigrant sector. Emphasized was the fact that these are highly-skilled, educated professionals, who played by the rules and whose work is in demand by U.S. employers, and that the actions of the government were leading to a breakdown of trust in the integrity and transparency of the American government and in our country, which is the beacon of hope for the world.

Thank you all for your involvement and commitment in fighting and demanding that the government not play games with people's lives and with the laws and regulations that are in place. Legal immigrants are often too afraid to draw attention to themselves, repeatedly tolerating deplorable government actions. While patience is a necessary part of working through the U.S. immigration system, let us use this as a learning opportunity. If we believe and work toward making a difference, and focus our efforts on a joint goal when needed, then we will make a difference. The power of belief will and can change the world. We stood firm for what we believed and said, "Enough!" and together we achieved the impossible and the U.S. government reversed itself and admitted to being wrong. Kudos! Together we did it!

gcnirvana
07-27-2007, 01:54 PM
A very good article that highlights the current state of affairs and also could be used in our defense against anti-immigrants. Read on...

http://www.coha.org/2007/07/26/immigration-compromise-too-little-too-late-the-gates-should-be-opened-to-all-who-wish-to-come/