Senators agree on fingerprinting to exit country
WASHINGTON — Senate supporters of far-reaching immigration legislation accepted minor changes in public while negotiating over more sweeping alterations in private on Monday as they drove toward expected Judiciary Committee approval by midweek.
In a long day of drafting, the panel voted to begin phasing in a requirement for foreigners to undergo fingerprinting when they leave the country. On a vote of 13-5, supporters agreed to require that procedure through any of the nation's 30 busiest airports, part of an attempt to strengthen security. Lawmakers also agreed to make an immigrant's third drunken driving conviction a deportable offense in some cases.
At the same time, officials expressed optimism that agreement was in sight in complex private talks over proposed changes to a section of the legislation relating to H-1B high-skilled worker visas. As drafted, the bill would raise the cap from 65,000 annually to 110,000, with the possibility of a rise to 180,000.
Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, whose state is home to a burgeoning high-tech industry, sought changes to reduce the cost and other conditions on firms that rely on highly skilled foreign labor.
He told reporters that he is prepared to support the legislation when the committee votes on final passage if there is agreement on the issues. “The way it was written, they're going to move offshore,” he said of firms seeking changes.
In general, organized labor and its allies on the committee, including Sen. Richard Durbin, D-Ill., want tougher conditions than industry was seeking, part of an attempt to ensure that American workers are not disadvantaged by a larger influx of H-1B visa holders.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Ghostly snailfish found at record depth
- Gray wolf decision reversed
- Replacement part beamed up to space station
- Traffic camera use upheld in Ohio
- Traffic deaths down 3 percent
- Supreme Court won’t stop gay marriages in Florida
- Attorney General Holder, Justice Department target bias against transgender employees
- FBI’s 2001 anthrax attack investigation questioned
- Tax-break extensions await Senate approval this week
- Hawaii lava could reach gas station, stores
- Congress’ legacy: Way worse than ‘do-nothing’ one of 1947-48