Immigration Legislation and Issues in the 109th Congress [Updated September 21, 2006]   [open pdf - 168KB]

"Security concerns are figuring prominently in the development of and debate on immigration legislation in the 109th Congress. In May 2005, the REAL ID Act became law as Division B of P.L. 109-13. It contains a number of immigration and identification document-related provisions intended to improve homeland security. Among these are provisions to make changes to the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) with respect to asylum and other forms of relief from removal; to expand the terrorism-related grounds for alien inadmissibility and deportation; and to set standards for state-issued drivers' licenses and personal identification cards, if such documents are to be accepted for federal purposes. The security-related issue of immigration enforcement remains on Congress's agenda. H.R. 4437, as passed by the House, contains provisions on border security, the role of state and local law enforcement, employment eligibility verification and worksite enforcement, smuggling, detention, and other enforcement-related issues. In addition to these provisions, H.R. 4437 contains significant and, in some cases, highly controversial provisions on unlawful presence, voluntary departure and removal, expedited removal, and denying U.S. entry to nationals from uncooperative countries. Despite efforts by some House Members to amend H.R. 4437 to establish new guest worker programs, the bill does not contain any such provisions. The House has also passed narrower security-related measures, including H.R. 4830, H.R. 6061, H.R. 6094, and H.R. 6095."

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CRS Report for Congress, RL33125
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