A group of senators have drafted a bill they hope will allow businesses to hire undocumented immigrants who are apt in science and mathematics.
However, according to the Washington Post, the bill may have a tough time passing on Capitol Hill. The legislation, Startup Act 2.0, was drafted by Senators Marco Rubio, Chris Coons, Jerry Moran and Mark Warner and will feature two types of visas: one that will be given to immigrants that have started successful businesses in the United States and another for individuals that have earned graduate degrees in mathematics, technology, engineering or science.
Although the bill has had support from business owners and lawmakers alike, a similar bill was shut down earlier this year as it raised several questions regarding immigration reform, which has been a controversial debate over the past two years.
The U.S. senators are hoping that if the bill does pass, the country can begin its climb to the top of the global economy. Prior to introducing the bill, Senator Moran referred to the measure as a necessary way to bring the country to the top once again, according to the source.
“To get America’s economic engine roaring once again, entrepreneurs, both American and foreign-born, must be free to pursue their ideas, form companies in the United States and hire employees,” he said.
Senator Mark Rubio has recently been active in the immigration reform debate. Rubio recently introduced a bill similar to the DREAM Act, which he urges lawmakers to consider passing. Unlike the original DREAM Act, however, Rubio would not give undocumented children who have lived here most of their life U.S. citizenship, but rather legal status, if they pursued higher education or joined the United States Armed Forces.
While there is no way of telling if Rubio’s first bill will pass, Moran told the Washington Post he thinks his colleagues will agree on the legislature he worked on with Rubio.
“I would guess that 80 percent of my colleagues in Congress would agree with the visa provisions in this legislation,” he said. “And what I would encourage is that we not take the attitude or approach that unless we do everything, we can’t do anything.”