The U.S. House of Representatives could vote on an immigration bill as early as Friday, reports ABC Univision. The STEM Jobs Act (H.R. 6429), which was defeated by the House earlier this year, has been re-introduced by Rep. Lamar Smith, R-Texas. The bill would allot an additional 55,000 visas to workers with master's and doctoral degrees in science, tech, engineering and math. The measure would increase visas for businesses seeking high-skilled workers, partly by eliminating the Diversity Visa program, which allots almost half of its visas to African immigrants.
Critics say the measure would benefit some immigrants at the expense of others. In a statement issued on Tuesday, SEIU International Secretary-Treasurer Eliseo Medina called the measure "crumbs for employers and workers, versus the full loaf of economic benefits that would come from common sense immigration reform ... Voters know what’s real reform and what’s fake, and they know when one group benefits at the expense of another."