Press Releases

Roe Applauds Passage of Fairness for High Skilled Immigrants Act of 2019

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Washington, July 10, 2019 | Whitley Alexander (202-226-6356) | comments

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, Rep. Phil Roe (R-Tenn.) released the following statement after H.R. 1044, the Fairness for High Skilled Immigrants Act of 2019 overwhelmingly passed the House of Representatives by 365-65:

“Our country’s immigration system is broken in many ways, beyond the critical need for border security and a barrier on our southern border. One flaw is that we impose arbitrary limits on the number of immigrants we can accept from an individual country in any given year. We need a merit-based system that prioritizes attracting the best and brightest, regardless of their country of origin. For example, in rural communities in East Tennessee, we desperately need doctors and other medical providers to provide local care in the community. Many of our local communities have succeeded in attracting Indian physicians to provide excellent care, but because India consistently reaches its cap, there are qualified physicians who could help us right now that are waiting years to get in. This bill will modernize our employment-based green card system, making it fairer for immigrants and better for Americans. This does not change the number of immigrants who are allowed to come here each year, just the distribution of where they come from. Other reforms are needed to create a truly merit-based process, but this is a good start.

Note: Congressman Roe is an original co-sponsor of H.R. 1044, the Fairness for High-Skilled Immigrants Act, legislation to ensure that all new applicants for employment-based green cards will wait the same time, regardless of country of origin. H.R.1044 does not create a single new green card, or H-1B visa, but ends the per-country caps on employment-based green card availability. This crucial change will allow applications from countries whose applicants are backlogged to receive the same treatment and those from countries not facing an application backlog. Read more information here.

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