***Clarification: These are my proposals! Many of these things are NOT part of the current bill!***
Legal Immigrants (Part II)
These provisions may be immediately implemented regardless of the progress of enforcement actions (Part I).
X visa – offer those currently here on legal visas (including student visas) a new visa (X visa?) which gives them an expedited (much faster than the illegal immigrants) path to citizenship. The X visa shall include a tamper resistant ID.
Background checks – applicants must pass a background check and maintain a clean record prior to receiving citizenship (ie while they hold the X visa). Countries with Jihadi networks or other organizations or regimes of concern (as designated by the US Department of State) will require a more in depth background check. Another background check shall be conducted prior to granting citizenship.*
Citizenship test – applicants for citizenship shall be required to pass an English proficiency test and demonstrate US historical/cultural etc understanding. Test criteria are to be established by the Secretary of DHS.
Forfeiture – X visas will be forfeited and original visa expiration dates apply if they fail a background check and the offense is not a deportable offense by current immigration law. Failure includes felonies and multiple misdemeanors (3) or a single misdemeanor if it involves drunk driving (there are, probably, other egregious misdemeanors I’m missing here). Forfeiture of an X visa does not prohibit application for a new visa if the offense does not preclude future visa qualification under established immigration law.
Armed Services – those currently in the armed services or who have served in the armed forces shall be offered immediate citizenship, if they have clean service records and maintained clean records post military service (for those no longer in the military).
Social services – No further access to US social or health care services will be granted by an X visa. These access rights are limited to current law.
DREAM act – If Congress is intent on this, the same benefits must be offered to those with current student visas and all US citizens.
Eligibility – This is a one time program limited to legal immigrants (in no way shall illegal immigrants qualify for this program). The X visa provision shall no longer be offered to those issued a visa after the date of program passage (ie your visa needs to be issued on or before the date this passes Congress). In addition, the X visa shall not be offered to legal immigrants who no longer hold a visa on the date this provision passes.
Sunset – The X visa shall be available to eligible applicants 10 years after the date of passage. Applications must be submitted (or post marked on or prior to the 10th year after passage). After that time, the X visa program will automatically terminate.
*I’ve heard background checks are much faster to conduct than in the past. I hope that is the case as background checks could be tough to do in a timely manner, but I don’t see a way around them (maybe someone has a better method) – we need to know who we are giving these benefits to.