Essential Pittsburgh
7:49 pm
Fri June 28, 2013

Immigration Reform Clears A Major Hurdle

The US Senate passed a comprehensive immigration reform bill Thursday.
The US Senate passed a comprehensive immigration reform bill Thursday.
Credit Wikipedia

A strong showing of bipartisan support Thursday resulted in the U.S. Senate's vote in favor of immigration reform. This marks the most significant overhaul of the nation's immigration laws in a generation.

The bill now moves on to the House where critics feel the bill could run into trouble. Could we finally pass immigration reform and have a bipartisan approach?

Rohit Dharwadkar, an immigration attorney for Elliot and Davis says the border security provisions in the bill are good sticking points for conservatives.

"I certainly don't think it should be a prerequisite (for a path to citizenship) but if we're going to get this bill through congress, that's what's going to be necessary."

Immigration attorney and former U.S. Diplomat, Kamana Mathur says the political climate is also different now from past attempts.

"It's become a hot-button issue because the Republicans recognize the importance of it."

Especially when they realize how much of an impact immigrants can have on the GDP. New visa options in the legislation would make provisions for entrepreneurship for legal immigrants.

Rohit says in Pittsburgh we've missed out on great opportunities when it comes to immigrants with HB1 visas,  "At least once a week I get either a CMU grad student or a Pitt grad student saying 'I got this great idea that I want to take to fruition.' And there's not much that we can do for them."