The sweeping immigration reform bill unveiled Wednesday would bring a raft of new regulations and add more layers to the federal bureaucracy.
The 844-page Senate bill calls for a dramatic expansion of the country’s worker verification system, an overhaul of visa programs and a new set of proposed regulations allowing undocumented workers to become “registered provisional immigrants.”
The bill would establish penalty systems for employers and create protections for vulnerable immigrant workers in order to achieve the largest overhaul of the nation’s immigration system in decades.
The bipartisan Gang of Eight in the Senate, which penned the bill, set out “to establish clear and just rules for seeking citizenship, to control the flow of legal immigration, and to eliminate illegal immigration, which in some cases has become a threat to our national security,” according to the legislation’s preamble.
Unlike the Dodd-Frank financial reform law, President Obama’s healthcare overhaul and other legislation requiring major regulatory undertakings, the immigration proposal has significant support from Republicans and business groups.
Still, its passage would set the stage for intense lobbying efforts to influence the federal rules that an assortment of agencies would be required to write. Business groups are already girding for the fight.
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