The Biden administration and Hill Democrats are expected later this week to release an immigration reform bill, multiple sources familiar with the planning tell NBC News.
The legislative text of the “U.S. Citizenship Act of 2021” will reflect the immigration priorities that President Joe Biden unveiled on his first day in office. His proposal includes an earned pathway to citizenship for 11 million undocumented immigrants, expands the refugee resettlement program and deploys more technology to the Southern border. There are additional protections that are being considered in the legislation, such as asylum processing in home countries for minors, expanded benefits for DREAMers and ending the public charge rule.
While previous attempts at massive immigration reform have failed under both Republican and Democratic administrations, the Biden White House has signaled support for breaking the legislation into pieces.
As a potential secondary path, lawmakers would work to pass bills legalizing farmworkers and Dreamers right away, and then move toward a more expansive overhaul. The main objective, officials and advocates say, is progress.
“If certain parts of the bill become building blocks, that’s fine,” said Marielena Hincapié, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center.