Yesterday, the immigration reform bill stumbled over the bill’s REAL ID provisions, which attempt to revive the moribund U.S. national ID system. Apparently, REAL ID does not enjoy the support of a majority of Senators.
Though Senate procedure is quite murky to me, apparently the Baucus-Tester amendment, to strip REAL ID-related requirements from the immigration bill (being considered as one division of an omnibus amendment known as a “clay pigeon”), was the subject of a motion to table. (“Tabling” an amendment means setting it aside indefinitely, which usually means forever.) The motion failed.
Several Senators who support overall immigration reform voted against tabling the amendment. This means that including the REAL ID provisions in the bill is enough to kill it.
Though only time and further machinations will tell, it looks like REAL ID-based internal enforcement can not be a part of any immigration law reform bill that gets through Congress.
That’s good news for all the native born, law-abiding Americans who would have been treated as suspects and made subject to surveillance in a vain attempt to get at illegal aliens.
Update: It appears that a cloture vote on the bill has failed, meaning the Senate is not prepared to continue with the bill. The inclusion of REAL ID killed immigration reform.