Urgent Legislative Alert on Immigration Reform
This morning the Senate voted 73-25 to invoke cloture on the Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act. This means that debate will now close and the Senate will run the clock on 30 hours of post-cloture debate leading up to a vote on final passage. Things are happening very quickly, and a vote is expected tomorrow afternoon, if not before. There are several amendments yet to be debated, however, some of those amendments may not reach the floor for debate if a compromise is reached before that time.
We believe that there are enough votes needed for the bill to pass, but there are still several Senators on the fence. I have attached a list of Senators who have not made their decision clear. In addition to these Senators, please call Senators from your state to let them know they have your support. The message we are receiving from ALL offices, is that grassroots support is desperately needed. This is a critical time for our industry, you as the constituents will play an integral role in the outcome.
With regard to the amendment Senator Brownback introduced providing a safe harbor for contractors and protecting them from being liable for the hiring practices of their sub-contractors, we have not been able to garner the votes needed for passage of the amendment. However, we were successful in having the language changed so that Contractors are not liable for their sub-contractors hiring practices, unless they are either ?knowing? or using ?reckless disregard.? This language is not perfect, but we have been assured by various offices that this will be addressed during the conference with the House.
I am continuing to work with our friends in the other construction trade associations to make sure that EVERYONE in the construction industry is protected and not negatively impacted by this legislation.
As I am sure you are all aware this legislation will have a dramatic impact on every one of you and your businesses, even if you do not use temporary workers. Therefore, I cannot stress how important it is that we as Mason Contractors make our voices heard, the next 24 hours will be critical!
Senators need to hear from you! Call the congressional switchboard at 202-224-3121 and urge all Senators to support comprehensive immigration reform. We strongly suggest that you start with the Senators below who are still on the fence:
- Senator Alexander
- Senator Bennett
- Senator Bond
- Senator Burns
- Senator Collins
- Senator Crapo
- Senator Dole
- Senator Frist
- Senator Hatch
- Senator Lott
- Senator McConnell
- Senator Murkowski
- Senator Snowe
- Senator Sununu
- Senator Stevens
- Senator Warner
Please feel free to contact me with any questions or concerns you may have. As I stated before this is going to be a very close vote and your opinions will mean a great deal.
Thank you for your support and hard work!
About the Author
Jessica Johnson Bennett was the Director of Government Affairs for MCAA. She has an extensive background in public affairs and government relations. Her expertise in strategic planning, PAC management and operations help on key policy issues.