As support wavers for Bush’s Immigration bill the fate of 12 million illegal immigrants in the U.S. goes into limbo for another round of debates in the Senate. The bill which garnered fragile support in early June, has after sensitive negotiations with the White House, been resurrected and awaits a crucial test vote this week. However, given it sensitive nature many senators are distancing themselves from the proposal making the outcome too close to call.

According to Jim Abrams of the Associated Press the bill would tighten borders, require workplace verification, and create a guest worker program, as well as, lay out a means by which the estimated 12 million illegal immigrants in the country could gain legal status and work toward citizenship. In his weekly radio address, President Bush is pushing this measure while admitting that it “could be the last major legislative achievement of his presidency.”

While generally Republican’s demand tighter border security and oppose any policy that suggests amnesty have found many in their ranks backing away from the bill due to pressure from their home districts and even Democrats are taking hits from their normal allies who say the bill is bad for workers. Senator Ted Kennedy who endorses the bill stated that this is a bill of such import that it has already involved 39 hearings, 23 days of debate, and 52 amendments to make it viable and that this issue has become such a terrible problem in the US that it demands action on the part of the senate.

However, Senator Jeff Sessions of Alabama criticizes the bill arguing that support is plummeting not just among senators but by the public, including Hispanic groups who say the provisions in the bill to obtain visas place too much emphasis on skills, to the disadvantage of family ties.

So while the public can only wait and see what the senate will do, passage will send the issue to the House where Democrats have promised to take it up at an early date.

[tags]Immigration bill, Amnesty, current events, Bush, radio address, Ted Kennedy, Hispanic groups,senate passage, senate bill, major legislation[/tags]