PHOENIX — U.S. Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., said Tuesday that a comprehensive immigration reform bill he is working on with a bipartisan group of senators will include a temporary worker program covering more than agriculture.
“In particular, we feel here in Arizona that in construction, not just agriculture, we have a need for foreign workers,” Flake told an Arizona Chamber of Commerce and Industry luncheon.
Flake said the so-called Gang of Eight hasn’t signed off on any deal yet but is working to balance job opportunities for Americans with the need for foreign workers who can fill low-wage, low-skill jobs.
“What we’ve tried to do is have a system that meets the needs of employers and the labor community,” he said.
Flake said the immigration bill would provide an expedited path toward citizenship for those in the agriculture industry.
“If people stay in the agriculture sector, there would be a slightly different process for them,” he said. “As far as details, that’s as far as I’ll go.”
Flake said the bill will be written in the next week and introduced in the coming weeks in the Senate Judiciary Committee, of which he and Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., also part of the Gang of Eight, are members.
He said he expects disagreements on the temporary worker plan.
“There are going to be a lot of people who are going to be unhappy about the guest worker element, but that may just mean we have a bill that can actually pass,” he said. “We’ll hopefully be able to move it through the process.”
Flake said passing an immigration reform bill in both the House and Senate could create other opportunities for bipartisan legislation.
“I hope that if we can get agreement on immigration that that will show to the country that Washington can agree on a few things,” he said. “If we can tackle an issue as thorny and as tough as this issue then maybe we can get together on a long-term budget deal.”
- The Pac-12 football season nears kickoff
- Tips to get ready for a pain-free golf season
- Protect your family with these 7 home security features
- How to train like an Olympic swimmer
- 2016 Olympics: A guide to must-see TV events
- The bride's guide to feeling your best on your wedding day
- Deciding when you need knee surgery
- Celebrating Fourth of July is much cooler in these AZ towns
- Top ten road trip bathrooms in America
- Six things causing a pain in your neck
- 5 things to make your summer move easier
- Three elements of a strong timeshare exit guarantee
- Stretches and exercises for carpal tunnel syndrome
- The best Major League ballparks have their own personality
- Comparing the best regular seasons: The '96 Bulls and '16 Warriors
- 3 Arizona road trips and the vehicles to get you there
- Colon cancer is preventable. Check these signs and symptoms to stay healthy.
- 6 of the biggest skin cancer myths
- Affordable small home makeover ideas
- Locals helping locals: 6 success stories you need to know about
- Sunscreen facts that could save your life
- 6 energy saving hacks for your home
- 5 tips for choosing a company to end your timeshare
- Overlooked water tips to save you money
- 5 of the most adored gentlemen in professional sports today
- The real danger of sitting at your desk
- Most surprising NBA playoff performances of the last 40 years
- 11 classic baseball movies you must see again
- Finally getting rid of fat: 3 methods that actually work
- 4 reasons cancer survivors should focus on food