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Wolf Signs Measure to Bring Immigration Bill to Floor

Press Release

Location: Washington, DC

Procedural Move Will Force Action on Bipartisan SAVE Act

Rep. Frank Wolf (R-10th) today signed a measure aimed at bringing a bipartisan immigration reform bill to the floor of the House for an up-or-down vote.

Wolf joined more than 90 House Members in signing a discharge petition on H.R. 4088, the Secure America Through Verification and Enforcement (SAVE) Act of 2007. Wolf is a cosponsor of the bill, introduced by Rep. Heath Shuler (D-NC).

"Congress needs to address this issue," Wolf said. "We must take action, and it seems like the only way to move this bipartisan bill forward is through a discharge petition."

A discharge petition is a procedural maneuver that is used to force action on legislation, bypassing the usual committee process for moving legislation. It can only be filed after a bill has been pending, but not acted on, for 30 legislative days. The petition is given to the Clerk of the House, who is tasked with publishing the petition signatures once a week in the Congressional Record on the last legislative day of the week. The SAVE Act was introduced in November.

Once a majority of the sitting members of the House have signed the petition, it is placed on the House calendar. After the petition has been on the calendar for at least 7 legislative days, the petition can be called up on the 2nd or 4th Monday of a month immediately following the Pledge of Allegiance. The petition can only be called up by a signer. After 20 minutes of debate, there is a motion to proceed to the consideration of the bill.

Below is a description of H.R. 4088:

Title I - Secure America's Borders

Increases Border Patrol agents by 8,000, utilizes new technology and infrastructure to secure the border and expands a specialized enforcement program called the "Tunnel Task Force".
Outlines provisions for recruitment of new agents and personnel through bonuses, student loan repayments, and other financial incentives.
Creates a pilot program to increase aerial surveillance, satellite, and equipment sharing between the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Defense to SAVE taxpayer dollars.

Title II - Mandatory Work Authorization Verification

Expands the E-Verify program and makes it mandatory for employers.
E-Verify provides employers with an inexpensive, quick, and accurate way to verify employee eligibility.
E-Verify already exists and has had tremendous success, but it currently is voluntary, which puts users at an economic disadvantage if competitors hire illegal aliens, and is only being used by a fraction of U.S. employers.
Employees must provide an acceptable form of ID from a limited list. Employers receive verification in seconds.
Closes the existing loopholes in E-Verify to detect multiple people using the same social security number and to detect people using stolen identities.
Requires information sharing between the Department of Homeland Security, the Social Security Administration, and the Internal Revenue Service.

Title III - Reduces Illegal Immigration Through Interior Enforcement

Increases investigative abilities of ICE by employing more agents and training additional state and local law enforcement personnel.
Expedites the removal of illegal aliens by expanding detention capacity and increasing the number of Federal District Court Judges.
Implements a targeted media campaign to inform illegal aliens of new laws and penalties, while also informing employers of penalties for hiring illegal immigrants

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