After months of negotiations, a bipartisan group of senators aims to roll out a comprehensive immigration bill on Tuesday, giving President Barack Obama new hope that one of his top priorities for 2013 will advance in Congress.
While the timing could still change, several congressional sources said the eight senators – four Democrats and four Republicans – plan to introduce their bill on Tuesday.
That is the latest they can unveil a measure – one that would put 11 million people living illegally in the United States on a path to citizenship – if Senate Democrats are to stick with plans to hold a Judiciary Committee hearing on the bill on Wednesday.
Prospects for the legislation brightened in the Senate when a deal was struck behind closed doors on wages for foreign farm laborers working in the United States. Senator Dianne Feinstein added that the deal also would place a limit on visas for such workers.
“We have an agreement on wages and the visa cap,” Feinstein told Reuters. The deal followed a six-hour negotiating session on Wednesday, she said.
The Democratic senator is not one of the so-called “gang of eight” writing the overall immigration legislation. But with her home state of California being an agriculture powerhouse, Feinstein was a lead negotiator on the farm worker provisions.
She refused to provide details of the wage and visa deal.