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< Back to current issue of Immigration Daily < Back to current issue of Immigrant's Weekly

[Congressional Record: December 20, 2001 (Senate)]
[Page S14082]
From the Congressional Record Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:cr20de01-223]                         
 
 AMENDING THE ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION REFORM AND IMMIGRANT RESPONSIBILITY 
                              ACT OF 1996

  Mr. REID. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the Judiciary 
Committee be discharged from further consideration of S. 1400, and the 
Senate proceed to its immediate consideration.
  The PRESIDENT pro tempore. Without objection, it is so ordered. The 
clerk will state the bill by title.
  The legislative clerk read as follows:

       A bill (S. 1400) to amend the Illegal Immigration Reform 
     and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 to extend the 
     deadline for aliens to present a border crossing card that 
     contains a biometric identifier matching the appropriate 
     biometric characteristic of the alien.

  There being no objection, the Senate proceeded to consider the bill.
  Mr. LEAHY. Mr. President, today we will pass an important piece of 
legislation dealing with America's borders. This bill, S. 1400, has 
bipartisan support for extending the deadline requiring aliens to 
present a border passing card with a biometric identifier to enter the 
United States from Mexico. This deadline expired earlier this year. The 
bill would extend the requirement by one year to allow the State 
Department to finish the difficult job of converting the old border 
crossing cards used by Mexicans entering the United States.
  This is a major task, and the State Department has already 
accomplished a great deal, issuing millions of new biometric border 
crossing cards. As our State Department continues to work to finish 
this task, however, we should not punish lawful Mexican workers who are 
still waiting for new cards, or the American businesses that depend 
upon them as customers and employees.
  This bill is one piece of major border security introduced by 
Senators Kennedy and Brownback. I am a proud cosponsor of their bill, 
S. 1749, the Enhanced Border Security and Visa Entry Reform Act. We 
should pass that bill in its entirety, and I hope that we do so before 
the end of this session. In the meantime, we should pass S. 1400 
without delay. This measure's original sponsors were Senator Kyl of 
Arizona and Senator Brownback, the Ranking Republican on the 
Immigration Subcommittee of the Judiciary Committee. It is cosponsored 
by Senator Gramm, Senator Kennedy, Senator Bingaman, and Senator 
Domenici. I am glad to be able to accommodate them and urge prompt 
action by the Senate on this measure.
  Mr. REID. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the bill be 
read a third time, passed, and the motion to reconsider be laid upon 
the table, with no intervening action or debate, and that any 
statements related to the bill be printed in the Record.
  The PRESIDENT pro tempore. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  The bill (S. 1400) was read the third time and passed, as follows:

                                S. 1400

       Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of 
     the United States of America in Congress assembled,

     SECTION 1. EXTENSION OF DEADLINE FOR PRESENTATION OF CERTAIN 
                   BORDER CROSSING IDENTIFICATION CARDS.

       Section 104(b)(2) of the Illegal Immigration Reform and 
     Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 (8 U.S.C. 1101 note) is 
     amended by striking ``5 years'' and inserting ``6 years''.

                          ____________________



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