Rep. Raúl Labrador (R-ID), a member of the House Judiciary Committee, voted for the AG Act at a Committee markup today. This legislation -- which would provide American farmers with a workable temporary agricultural guestworker program -- is one of several immigration bills the Committee is marking up as part of a step-by-step approach to reforming our nation's immigration laws. The bill was approved by the Committee and will move to the House floor.
"Our current immigration system is broken, and now is the time to fix it," said Rep. Labrador. "We have a unique opportunity here in Congress to reform our immigration laws in a way that makes our country stronger, safer, and more prosperous. The bill we approved today is a critical part of immigration reform, ensuring that American farmers have access to a reliable workforce so they can continue putting food on Americans' tables. Our bill modernizes the temporary agricultural guestworker program -- putting American farmers in the drivers' seat, not Washington bureaucrats -- so that America can continue to be the world's agricultural leader."
Under current law, many American farmers avoid using the temporary agricultural guestworker program because it burdens them with excessive regulations. The new guestworker program created under the AG Act remedies this problem by removing red tape, streamlining access to a reliable workforce, and protecting farmers from abusive lawsuits. The AG Act also allows more participation in the guestworker program by opening it up to dairies and food processors, both of which often need access to foreign labor.