Senator Lisa Murkowski today joined 67 other Senators to cast her vote for S.744 the Comprehensive Immigration Reform Bill and shared the following statement afterwards:
"I have always believed that immigration reform legislation should have teeth, heart and 21st century enhancements -- and all three priorities have been reached through this bill. It's important for all of us to acknowledge that we have a broken immigration system that has resulted in 11 million undocumented individuals in our nation. We couldn't un-break it or undo where we are today; we had to fix it intelligently, impose penalties and move forward.
"I said this bill has teeth and heart. This bill improves our border security by doubling the number of border patrol agents along the Southwest border and strengthening the fence to stem the number of illegal entries into our nation. Additionally, this bill includes 21st century technological rigor, through an improved entry/exit visa tracking system that ensures visitors do not extend their stay, as well as mandatory use of the Internet tool e-Verify to make sure that employers hire authorized employees. This bill also creates a lengthy and costly 13-year path to citizenship for those who are already here and places them at the back of the line, to create penalties for those who have broken the law while not pulling families apart.
"We are a nation of immigrants and a nation of laws. Today's legislation strikes the right balance by repairing a broken system, demonstrating to 11 million undocumented workers that illegal actions have consequences and rewarding the faith and aspirations of those around the world seeking to follow the correct path to reach what America has to offer."