Bill To Help Afghans Who Escaped Taliban Faces Long Odds In The Senate

by | Sep 16, 2022 | Politics

WASHINGTON — A new bipartisan bill to give Afghans in America a pathway to permanent residency stands a slim chance of winning enough Republican support to become law in the near future.The U.S. brought in tens of thousands of people as part of its hasty retreat from Afghanistan last year but has not said that they can stay. The Afghan Adjustment Act, introduced in August by Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) with three Republican co-sponsors, would create a path to permanent residency for more than 77,000 Afghans who have arrived in the U.S. since last summer. Advertisement“Giving our Afghan allies – many of whom worked alongside our U.S. Military – a chance to apply for permanent legal status is the right and necessary thing to do,” Klobuchar told HuffPost in a statement. “This bipartisan legislation will provide Afghans who submit to additional vetting a green card to live and work in the United States.”The bill would also expand eligibility for so-called special immigrant visas to other at-risk groups still in Afghanistan, such as certain former members of the Afghan armed forces.“These people have no place to go,” bill co-sponsor Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) told HuffPost. “Their country has fallen into hell.”But Graham acknowledged that it would be difficult to win over enough Republicans to get the bill through the Senate, saying his colleagues have “a legitimate concern” that Afghan nationals could pose a security risk. AdvertisementSen. Rick Scott (R-Fla.), for instance, argued that President Joe Biden’s administration failed to vet the 80,000 Afghans admitted to the U.S. last year. A Defense Department report from February said its records on 50 Afghan evacue …

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