Update Mar 31, 2020: S386 news today – CIS published the S386 analysis report by Congressional Research Service which claims that S386 will not stop the growth of backlogs in the future.
This report describes the 10-year impact of eliminating the 7% per country ceiling on the first three employment-based immigration categories: EB1, EB2, and EB3.
S386 has the potential of eliminating the Indian & Chinese EB1, EB2 and EB3 backlog in 3, 17, and 7 years respectively if it is implemented in 2020.
As per the report, the S386 may just help reduce the Green card wait times for Indian and Chinese nationals initially but it would create a backlog for other countries.
If there is no S386 law, CATO institute projects that this employment-based backlog will double by FY 2030 to 2 million as compared to the current 1 million.
This article will discuss:
- Amendments in S386
- Senator Lee Town Hall – Clarifying S386 Rumors
- Is Dairy Farm Senator Hold Coming Up?
- Indian GC Priority Date Movement
- President Sign After Senate Approval
- Judiciary Committee Hearing
- Apple CEO Tim Cook Supports S386
- Illinois Senator Dick Durbin RELIEF Act
- Mike Lee Convinced David Perdue
- Unanimous Consent Voting
- Senator Rand Paul Agreement
- Call Your Senator
Amendments in S386
Feb 2020: Immigration Voice does not believe that Durbin is working in good faith. There are more amendments required to bring other senators on board like extending the phase-out period from 3 years to 9 years.
IV has shared the working draft of new extended amendments here:
Open link in new window.
Senator Lee Town Hall – Clarifying S386 Rumors
Jan 2020: On the other hand, Senator Lee is actively spreading the positive aspects of S386 among the American community. There are lot of baseless rumors spread by Anti-386 groups.
Some reports claim that Lee might drop Durbin’s S386 amendment deal clauses completely as he is expecting Republican objection on Durbin’s demands. These are all rumors at this time. Nothing has been claimed by Mike Lee officially. Most of the Anti-386 groups are tweeting about this rumor.
Is Dairy Farm Senator Hold Coming Up?
When we thought that there could be a compromised S386 coming on the table, Brietbart’s report of another hold coming from South Dakota Sen. ‘Mike Rounds’ on behalf of dairy farm workers is being circulated.
Breitbart is known for its extreme anti-immigrant view. They have taken the liberty to call the S386 bill, a ‘giveaway to Indian workers’, which clearly shows their closed mindset. They are basically trying to make two sets of immigrants fight against each other.
Their article claims that S386 will make way for high skilled workers by taking away Dairy farm worker’s green cards! And then continues to claim that S386 will help Indians take away American jobs. They simply ignore the fact that Dairy farm workers are also immigrants like Indians, and are also taking away American jobs!
How will favoring one set of immigrants against others, based on nationality, will help the American workers?
Do not worry. If Durbin can be managed, everything else can be managed too. Its all part of the process.
Indian GC Priority Date Movement
The 150 year US green card wait times for tax-paying skilled immigrants from India and China will be reduced to 10 year if the bill becomes law by end of 2019.
As per my estimation, the Indian green card EB1, EB2 and EB3 dates should get current up-to Sep 2014 immediately if the bill passes.
The rest of the PD dates after Sep 2014 will get current in subsequent 4 years.
As per my own estimate, the PD dates from Sep 2014 to Sep 2016 should get current by Oct 2023 and so on.
Once the backlog of people waiting in queue from 2009 till today is cleared, the new applicants with i140 approval from 2020 onward should expect to get Green card within a year as it happens for other countries today.
President Sign After Senate Approval
We will update this page as and when the combined HR 1044 and S386 is voted and passes the Senate.
The next step after Senate voting will be president signature before the 7% country of birth limits are permanently removed.
We do expect friction and opposition from other countries who are used to get green card within 6 to 12 months at this time. Iran’s native have been teaming up and have been quite vocal about the country limit removal in recent past.
We hope that the law passes and makes the system fair for all countries irrespective of their size, skills and color. The green card should be awarded on the first come first served basis rather than country of birth.
It would be interesting to see how Trump administration reacts to this bill if it passes Senate this week. Trump has already geared up to make the idea of merit based immigration a front runner topic for his election speeches.
The removal of country based limits would be a welcome step in that direction. The more merit based green cards means more income taxes and balance of wages in the economy.
The current H1B workers who are sometimes exploited by their employer would be able to negotiate better salaries. The american workers will also not face a replacement considering the fact that H1B worker may also demand the same salary as any other US citizen worker.
Judiciary Committee Hearing
Oct 2019: Mike Lee did NOT attempt a unanimous vote call in Senate on Oct 31 as was anticipated. He also said that he does not support Durbin’s call for Judicial hearing on the S386 bill.
As per ImmigrationVoice, Durbin already had this committee meeting in 2011. Asking for same meeting again shows the intent to delay the process rather than help remove the country limits.
Apple CEO Tim Cook Supports S386
After Durbin blocked S386, Apple CEO Tim Cook has tweeted in favor of Green card country based limits removal bill. This is a welcome gesture and means a lot for the skilled immigrant community.
Illinois Senator Dick Durbin RELIEF Act
Illinois Senator Dick Durbin is still against S386. He is pushing for an idea where he wants to remove backlog for people who have been waiting for at-least 5 years for their US green cards through his own RELIEF act.
Durbin did recognize the demonstration by Indian crowd at one of his democrats breakfast meeting on Sunday morning. He gave away the number of Indians waiting in GC backlog as 5,20,000 (half million).
He used an example of Indian child’s ageing out as an example in his speech to promote his own RELIEF act which asks for increasing total number of green cards.
This is probably not going to happen unless the Trump’s merit based plan becomes a law. Durbin’s unanimous consent voting attempt on Oct 16 for his S2603 RELIEF act was blocked as expected.
Mike Lee has requested to keep calling Dick Durbin in his Washington DC office at 202-224-2152 to bring him on-board.
Mike Lee Convinced David Perdue
Earlier on Sep 19, 2019, Green card country limit removal did not pass the Senate as a new hold was placed by Geogia Senator with objections on the language in the bill.
The non-Indian and non-Chinese lobbyists are pushing their Senators to vote against it.
Unanimous Consent Voting
Earlier on Sep 19, 2019 Mike Lee tried to pass the H.R.1044/S.386 – The Fairness for High Skilled Immigrants Act with Unanimous Consent (UC).
Senators Mike Lee and Kamala Harris had negotiated a deal with Senator Paul to find a reasonable compromise. Rand Paul had placed a block on the S386 bill earlier citing concerns of visa availability for health care workers.
Senator Rand Paul Agreement
Senator Paul has agreed to remove his hold on the S386 bill now with a clause to have fixed quota of 5k green cards for Schedule-A jobs which includes Healthcare workers.
The fixed quota will remain applicable for next 9 years which is probably the time frame that is expected to take to clear Indian and Chinese backlogs.
These workers currently receive around 5,000 green cards every year anyway and this agreement to reserve their seats after removing country based green card limit will be fair for all parties including Indian and Chinese workers.
Call Your Senator
The green card country limit removal bill #HR1044 has never reached this stage before. It would be demoralizing for thousands of workers if it does not pass the Senate now.
You can use this small script to convince your state senator to vote for HR1044 and S386:
I am living in [YOUR_RESIDENCE_STATE]
👉 Tell your personal GC story/H4EAD Issue/ Aged-out kids
👉 Requesting Senator to Cosponsor bill S386 Fairness for High-Skilled Immigrants Act of 2019.
👉 On July 10th House of Representatives passed S386 companion bill H.R.1044 with a thumping 365 bipartisan votes. It is now in Senate.
👉 Please cosponsor and vote YES to bill S.386. Thank You!
One of our guest compiled the list of senator for your convenience:
|Alabama||Richard Shelby (R)||(202) 224-5744|
|Alaska||Dan Sullivan (R)||(202) 224-3004|
|Arkansas||John Boozman (R)||(202) 224-4843|
|California||Dianne Feinstein (D)||(202) 224-3841|
|Connecticut||Richard Blumenthal (D)||(202) 224-2823|
|Connecticut||Chris Murphy (D)||(202) 224-4041|
|Florida||Marco Rubio (R)||(202) 224-3041|
|Florida||Rick Scott (R)||(202) 224-5274|
|Georgia||Johnny Isakson (R)||(202) 224-3643|
|Georgia||David Perdue (R)||(202) 224-3521|
|Hawaii||Brian Schatz (D)||(202) 224-3934|
|Hawaii||Mazie Hirono (D)||(202) 224-6361|
|Illinois||Dick Durbin (D)||(202) 224-2152|
|Iowa||Chuck Grassley (R)||(202) 224-3744|
|Kansas||Pat Roberts (R)||(202) 224-4774|
|Kentucky||Mitch Mcconnell (R)||(202) 224-2541|
|Kentucky||Rand Paul (R)||(202) 224-4343|
|Louisiana||Bill Cassidy (R)||(202) 224-5824|
|Louisiana||John Neely Kennedy (R)||(202) 224-4623|
|Maine||Angus King (I)||(202) 224-5344|
|Maryland||Ben Cardin (D)||(202) 224-4524|
|Maryland||Chris Van Hollen (D)||(202) 224-4654|
|Massachusetts||Elizabeth Warren (D)||(202) 224-4543|
|Massachusetts||Ed Markey (D)||(202) 224-2742|
|Michigan||Debbie Stabenow (D)||(202) 224-4822|
|Michigan||Gary Peters (D)||(202) 224-6221|
|Mississippi||Cindy Hyde-Smith (R)||(202) 224-5054|
|Missouri||Josh Hawley (R)||(202) 224-6154|
|Montana||Jon Tester (D)||(202) 224-2644|
|Montana||Steve Daines (R)||(202) 224-2651|
|Nebraska||Deb Fischer (R)||(202) 224-6551|
|Nebraska||Ben Sasse (R)||(202) 224-4224|
|Nevada||Jacky Rosen (D)||(202) 224-6244|
|New Hampshire||Jeanne Shaheen (D)||(202) 224-2841|
|New Hampshire||Maggie Hassan (D)||(202) 224-3324|
|New Jersey||Bob Menendez (D)||(202) 224-4744|
|New Jersey||Cory Booker (D)||(202) 224-3224|
|New Mexico||Tom Udall (D)||(202) 224-6621|
|New Mexico||Martin Heinrich (D)||(202) 224-5521|
|New York||Chuck Schumer (D)||(202) 224-6542|
|New York||Kirsten Gillibrand (D)||(202) 224-4451|
|North Carolina||Richard Burr (R)||(202) 224-3154|
|North Carolina||Thom Tillis (R)||(202) 224-6342|
|Ohio||Sherrod Brown (D)||(202) 224-2315|
|Oklahoma||Jim Inhofe (R)||(202) 224-4721|
|Pennsylvania||Bob Casey (D)||(202) 224-6324|
|Pennsylvania||Pat Toomey (R)||(202) 224-4254|
|Rhode Island||Jack Reed (D)||(202) 224-4642|
|Rhode Island||Sheldon Whitehouse (D)||(202) 224-2921|
|South Carolina||Lindsey Graham (R)||(202) 224-5972|
|South Carolina||Tim Scott (R)||(202) 224-6121|
|South Dakota||John Thune (R)||(202) 224-2321|
|South Dakota||Mike Rounds (R)||(202) 224-5842|
|Tennessee||Lamar Alexander (R)||(202) 224-4944|
|Tennessee||Marsha Blackburn (R)||(202) 224-3344|
|Texas||Ted Cruz (R)||(202) 224-5922|
|Vermont||Patrick Leahy (D)||(202) 224-4242|
|Vermont||Bernie Sanders (I)||(202) 224-5141|
|Virginia||Tim Kaine (D)||(202) 224-4024|
|Washington||Patty Murray (D)||(202) 224-2621|
|West Virginia||Joe Manchin (D)||(202) 224-3954|
|West Virginia||Shelley Moore Capito (R)||(202) 224-6472|
|Wisconsin||Ron Johnson (R)||(202) 224-5323|
|Wyoming||Mike Enzi (R)||(202) 224-3424|
|Wyoming||John Barrasso (R)||(202) 224-6441|