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Stem Jobs Act of 2012

Floor Speech

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Mr. DINGELL. Mr. Speaker, I rise in opposition to H.R. 6249, the STEM Jobs Act of 2012. While proponents of this legislation claim that they are making a serious effort at immigration reform, nothing could be farther from the truth. True to their pattern throughout the 112th Congress, the Republican Majority has once again chosen to bring a divisive, partisan bill to the floor rather than seeking compromise and middle ground.

I have long called for comprehensive immigration reform, and am pleased to hear this sentiment echoed by others recently. Reducing the backlog for immigrant graduates from American universities who are studying science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) is a worthy and laudable goal. Sadly, H.R. 6429 is not the right way to achieve it. Instead of increasing the number of STEM visas that are available, this legislation would completely eliminate the Diversity Visa program, which provides visas to countries with low immigration rates to the United States. We do not need to rob Peter to pay Paul to help improve our immigration system. We just need some common sense.

Our immigration system has been broken for long enough. Let's dedicate ourselves to finding a workable compromise to this serious problem instead of making a half-hearted attempt at reform. I urge my colleagues to join me in voting against H.R. 6429.

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