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Public Statements

Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act Of 2007

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC



Mr. KENNEDY. Mr. President, as always, we thank the Senator from West Virginia for insisting that Senate decorum be enforced. All of us understand his devotion to this institution and to its ability to function in an effective and efficient way. He reminds us, and we need to be reminded at times. We thank him. I remember Jennings Randolph making those points time and time again about standing at one's desk. That was back at another time, but I certainly remember his service to the country.

So we have some idea of the way we are going to proceed, I have been notified, although I haven't had an opportunity to talk either to Senator Specter or Senator Kyl or others on the other side, that we have two amendments at least that are going to deal with the temporary worker provision, one which would effectively strike all of the temporary worker provisions that will be probably offered by the Senator from North Dakota, and another amendment which will be the amendment to reduce the number of temporary workers from 400,000 to 200,000. Those were amendments similar to the ones we had the last time we had the immigration bill. We had a good discussion, and we will have that debate, but we don't expect, obviously, that we will be voting this evening. We are prepared to involve or engage in the debate or discussion, if those Members want to, but it will be our hope that those amendments would be done in a timely way for tomorrow. It is a good way to get the debate started because it is an issue that is broad enough in scope that certainly those of us who were here during the last debate remember it quite clearly. Others can understand it quite well because it is a fairly obvious issue. It is about what is going to be the number, whether we are going to have a temporary worker program and whether we are going to have temporary workers at this dimension, 400,000 reduced to 200,000.

I hope that will be the beginning of the debate. We will talk to those Members to try to give the membership as much notice as possible to address those issues in a timely way. They have indicated their desire to start with those. We would expect that to be done.


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