American president George Bush suffered a setback yesterday as his sweeping plans for an immigration revamp were derailed in the Senate.
The highly-contested bill fell 14 votes short of the required total of 60.
Opportunities for foreigners to work in the USA are not dashed by the news, but illegal immigrants already in the country will not receive the respite that the president and his party had envisaged.
“Legal immigration is one of the top concerns of the American people and Congress’ failure to act on it is a disappointment,” said the president in a Rhode Island news conference after the decision.
“A lot of us worked hard to see if we couldn’t find common ground. It didn’t work.”
Bush had proposed offering immigrants with no official papers the chance to work in the USA legitimately, if they came forward and showed a willingness to embrace American values.
Congress is now unlikely to contest an immigration reform again until next year.
Contributed by J.Bevan