May 25, 2006
Yesterday afternoon the Senate considered several amendments to S.2611, the Hagel-Martinez Immigration Compromise bill. Among the results were:
- Increasing the amount of fees required by the legalization program by $500.00, raising the total amount of fees to more than $3,200.00. The amendment passed 73-25.
- Reserving 2/3 of the 55,000 diversity visa lottery numbers for persons with advanced degrees in math, science, and technology. The effect of the amendment will likely be a substantial decrease in the number of diversity visas granted, as the majority of diversity visas go to third world countries. The amendment passed 56-42.
- Removing international adoption responsibilites from the Department of Homeland Security and placing them wholly within the Department of State. The amendment passed on a voice vote.
- Terminating the guestworker program after five years. The amendment failed by a single vote 48-49.
A handful of amendments are expected to have votes this morning with a vote on the final bill expected this afternoon.