Undercurrent

Budget’s immigration provisions could put 112,700 on path to citizenship in Nevada

By: - September 15, 2021 3:54 pm
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TPS holders rally in front of Sen. Jacky Rosen’s office in June 10 to demand residency via the budget reconciliation process. (Arriba Las Vegas screenshot)

One of the many items House Democrats are marking up in the $3.5 trillion budget reconciliation bill would provide pathways to citizenship for Dreamers, people holding Temporary Protected Status, and essential workers, including farmworkers.

According to an estimate prepared by the Center for American Progress and released this week, the immigration reform measures included in the reconciliation bill would make 112,700 people in Nevada eligible to apply for permanent U.S. residency.

CAP estimates 6.9 million people would qualify nationally.

For immigration measures to be included in the reconciliation package, the Senate Parliamentarian would have to rule that they are not “extraneous matter” vis-a-vis the federal budget. Democratic lawmakers argue the reforms are not extraneous, as they would render people eligible for Medicaid, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, the recently enacted child tax credit and other federal earned benefits and programs.

If the Parliamentarian were to rule that immigration reforms are incidental to the budget and therefore could not be enacted in the reconciliation process, senators have the authority to change their own rules with a simple majority. Senators have done that twice in recent years, both times to transform the process for approving judicial nominees.

A prior CAP report estimated that providing a path to citizenship for undocumented people would add $1.7 trillion to the economy over a decade, create hundreds of thousands of jobs and increase wages.

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Hugh Jackson
Hugh Jackson

Hugh Jackson was editor of the Las Vegas Business Press, senior editor at the Las Vegas CityLife weekly newspaper, daily political commentator on the Las Vegas NBC affiliate, and author of the Las Vegas Gleaner political blog. Prior to moving to Las Vegas, he was a reporter and editor at the Casper (Wyoming) Star-Tribune.

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