Immigration bill: How would reform measure affect those in deportation proceedings?

What would the immigration reform bill passed by the U.S. Senate yesterday mean for undocumented immigrants who are already in deportation proceedings -- such as those featured in our cover story, "Out of the Shadows"?

According to the office of Colorado Senator Michael Bennet, who is one of the "Gang of Eight," those who are in the process of deportation would be able to apply for the same temporary legal status as other immigrants as long as they meet the criteria.

The bill would create a thirteen-year path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants who entered the U.S. on or before December 31, 2011 and who meet eligibility criteria. Several things could make a person ineligible: Those who have been convicted of a felony, three or more misdemeanors or a host of other crimes (the full list is below) would not qualify to become a "registered provisional immigrant," or RPI.

Michael Bennet final.png
Senator Michael Bennet.
After ten years as a registered provisional immigrant, a person who paid a series of fines and fees, passed a background check and proved that he or she held a job, among other requirements, could apply to become a legal permanent resident. After three more years and another round of fees, fines and requirements, that person could apply for citizenship.

Bennet spokesman Adam Bozzi sends us this information about how the bill would apply to those already in deportation proceedings -- and those who've already been deported:

"Individuals with removal orders will be permitted to apply for RPI status, as will aliens currently in removal proceedings. To qualify, those individuals must complete the exact same eligibility criteria as individuals not in proceedings," he writes in an e-mail.

"Individuals outside of the United States who were previously here before December 31, 2011 and were deported for non-criminal reasons can apply to re-enter the United States in RPI status if they are the spouse of or parent of...a United States citizen or lawful permanent resident, or are a childhood arrival who is eligible for the DREAM Act."

The list of factors that would make a person ineligible for registered provisional immigrant status are long. Here it is, courtesy of Bozzi:

Criminal bars to RPI eligibility include:

  • Any felony (other than state or local status-based or immigration offenses);
  • An aggravated felony under INA §101(a)(43);
  • Three or more misdemeanors (other than minor traffic offenses or state/local status-based or immigration offenses) where conviction occurred on different dates;
  • Conviction or participation in a criminal street gang;
  • Foreign offenses (except purely political offenses) that would render the person inadmissible or deportable if committed in the U.S., with certain exceptions; and
  • Unlawful voting.

Grounds of inadmissibility for RPI applicants include:

  • Crimes involving moral turpitude;
  • Controlled substance violations;
  • Two or more criminal convictions;
  • Drug trafficking;
  • Prostitution and procuring a prostitute;
  • Criminal activity where the person has asserted immunity;
  • Violators of religious freedom;
  • Human trafficking;
  • Money laundering;
  • National security grounds, including espionage;
  • Terrorists and terrorist activities;
  • Nazis and members of a totalitarian party;
  • Polygamy;
  • Child abductors;
  • A misrepresentation related to RPI application;
  • Immigrant smugglers;
  • Draft evaders;
  • Habitual drunk drivers;
  • Criminal street gang participants;
  • Stalking;
  • Violating a protection order;
  • Child abuse, child neglect or child abandonment;
  • Enhanced passport trafficking and immigration document fraud offenses; and
  • Failure to comply with a request for biometrics.

So what do local leaders and advocates think of the bill?

Continue for local reaction to the bill.

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DonkeyHotay topcommenter

 "Nazis and members of a totalitarian party"

So much for Political Freedom in the U$A, eh?

"Any felony"

Including Colorado's newest catch all Felony "Attempting to Influence a Public Servant" which includes any false statement to any public employee, in writing or in person, i.e. any government form/application like Driver License -- or even lying to the Animal Control office about how many cats you have in the house.


Please stop giving our jobs away!


Melanie Asmar has become a 'MUST READ' columnist & I'm quite sure I speak for MANY as I request of WW, please give Ms. Asmar MORE work !!! She COULD take some of the load off of Micheal's shoulders .

Watch out Alan & Patricia !!!

Here comes 'Mel' !........

DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@CloudGang ... if you're so low on the economic food chain that some under-educated Jose que no habla English can do and perform your "job" -- at any wage -- as good or better than you, then perhaps you don't deserve a place on the great Free Market capitalist experiment that is the U$A ... regardless of where you were born.


My economic status has nothing to do with jobs being giving away based on biased views. Take note....we do not live in a free market society.....if we did I would be able to slang these ten pounds I have. I doubt you were fooled.

@DonkeyHotay @CloudGang 


@DonkeyHotay @CloudGang  

You are WAY OFF your mark on this one, Hotay .

Cloud 'aint' no' chump ! In fact, I'd like to issue an invitation to you both ! I am meeting several from WW's blogs at the rally on the Capitol steps, around 3pm today . PLEASE COME & INTRODUCE YOURSELVES !!!

I'm impossible to miss . Look for the BRUTALLY handsome, 1-legged, white-boy, w/ the COOLEST Rottweiler on EARTH, named Clyde . Please come say, "High !" .......

DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@CloudGang "jobs being giving away based on ..."

Free Market -- ipso facto

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