NPR Story
5:26 pm
Thu June 6, 2013

Senate To Start Debate On Immigration Reform

Originally published on Tue June 11, 2013 5:00 pm

Friday morning the U.S. Senate as a whole begins to debate a proposal to reform the nation's immigration laws. Senate leadership hope the bipartisan bill will pass by the end of the month.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) has set a deadline: he wants the Senate to pass immigration reform before the July 4 recess. That leaves about three weeks for debate.

The bipartisan bill includes provisions to boost border security, as well as a path to citizenship for immigrants currently in the country illegally. Reid told reporters Thursday he was confident.

"There is no reason we can't finish this debate quickly. I am totally convinced that there is tremendous momentum to get this legislation passed, no matter what people are saying on the record, off the record," Reid said.

The bill will need 60 yes votes to survive a filibuster. But earlier this week one of the bill's authors, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), said he doesn't believe the votes are there. The bill is expected to face a tougher fight in the Republican-controlled House.

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