President-elect Joe Biden will propose an 8-year path to citizenship for the estimated 11 million illegal immigrants currently living in the U.S., the Associated Press reported Tuesday.
Biden reportedly plans to unveil the legislation on his first day in office. The plan could represent Biden’s first kept campaign promise, as he vowed several times on the campaign trail to introduce a path to citizenship for the 11 million illegal immigrants within his first 100 days in office.
Under the plan, all illegal immigrants who began living in the U.S. by January 1, 2021 will have a 5-year path to temporary legal status, so long as they pay taxes and pass a background check, the AP reported. Following an additional three years, they would be able to apply for U.S. citizenship.
Dreamers will be given an expedited path to temporary legal status under the legislation. The plan does not address border security or provide any funding or strategy for improving it, instead only calling for lawmakers to come up with new strategies, according to the AP.
The bill will likely represent the first major legislative push of Biden’s presidency, and it could ultimately compete for the limelight with the Senate impeachment trial of Trump.
The House of Representatives impeached Trump on one charge of “incitement of insurrection” for his role in causing a pro-Trump mob to storm the U.S. Capitol on January 6. While Biden has condemned Trump’s actions, he has been hesitant to endorse the impeachment effort for fear the process could get in the way of his legislative goals.
“Last week, we saw an unprecedented assault on our democracy,” Biden said in a January 13 statement. “It was carried out by political extremists and domestic terrorists, who were incited to this violence by President Trump. It was an armed insurrection against the United States of America. And those responsible must be held accountable.” (RELATED: Trump Says He Was ‘Outraged’ By Supporters Storming Capitol, Is Now Focused On ‘Smooth’ Transition Of Power | The Daily Caller)
“I hope that the Senate leadership will find a way to deal with their Constitutional responsibilities on impeachment while also working on the other urgent business of this nation,” he added. “From confirmations to key posts … to getting our vaccine program on track, and to getting our economy going again.”
Biden was more blunt in a January 8 statement.