Democrats will table President Joe Biden’s immigration bill on Thursday, facing steep odds as they attempt to create the first major path to U.S. citizenship for undocumented immigrants in nearly 35 years, reports the Washington Post. The bill is the centerpiece of Biden’s broad strategy to forge a more humane immigration system, and it would grant legal status to approximately 11 million people, mostly from Mexico and Central America. Republicans have signaled little support for Biden’s approach. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), a backer of the 2013 bill, called the latest measure a “blanket amnesty.” Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah), who voted with Democrats to convict Trump, touted his own measure this week that would increase the minimum wage “while ensuring businesses cannot hire illegal immigrants.”
Biden’s bill includes enforcement provisions such as increased border technology to interdict drug traffickers and smugglers, higher penalties for employers who exploit undocumented laborers in the United States, and increased funding for immigration courts. Under the bill, millions of undocumented immigrants would be allowed to apply for citizenship after eight years, longer than the current five-year requirement but shorter than the path the Senate approved in 2013.