The bill has little chance of passage in the majority lead Senate..
But it probably will play well in the West and South West where there are farms that need those workers to handle their crops….
The bill would also provide a avenue for those workers to obtain citizenship, something Trump’s conservative rightwingnuts are strongly against…
The legislation by Sen. Dianne Feinstein and Rep. Zoe Lofgren is designed to ease agricultural worker shortages and protect undocumented workers already in the United States from deportation. The bills come as the nation grapples with an extended partial government shutdown fueled by an impasse between President Donald Trump and congressional Democrats over funding for a border wall and broader differences over immigration policies.
The companion Senate and House bills revive proposals by Feinstein in prior Congresses to allow immigrant farmworkers to apply for so-called blue cards from the Department of Homeland Security, which would provide temporary legal status for those who qualify. Applicants would have to undergo background checks, have no criminal records, and pay federal taxes, immigration processing fees and $100 penalty fee to DHS.
The department could begin to adjust blue card workers to lawful permanent residence five years after the law takes effect. Eligible workers would have to have performed either 100 days of agricultural work each year for five years or 150 days of such work each year for three years.
Feinstein and Lofgren said the legislation would address a key labor issue for California and other states with produce and dairy operations that rely heavily on a pool of immigrant workers that is largely undocumented.
Some estimates put the share of agricultural workers in the United States illegally as high as 75 percent. Feinstein’s bill has 11 co-sponsors, all Democrats, and Lofgren’s bill has 58 co-sponsors, all Democrats…..
Here for a list of sponsors for the bills in the House and Senate….