Associated Press: Congress has taken the unusual step of waiving immigration restrictions for two Japanese citizens fighting to live in the United States.The private immigration bills passed by the House on Wednesday - they had already been passed by the Senate - are the first to be approved in more than five years. The measures now go to President Barack Obama for his signature. One bill would clear the way for the granting of legal status to the widow of a Tennessee Marine who gave birth to their son after he was killed in Iraq in 2008. Another would provide relief to a Japanese man living in California whose mother was killed in a car crash when he was a teenager and who was never legally adopted. "I have always seen myself as part of this whole American society, and I am American, just like my friends but without the status or papers," said the man, Shigeru Yamada, now 28. "For me to finally become, or have the potential to become a permanent resident, it means a great deal to me, it really does. I can't really express how happy I am." Congress can vote to let individual immigrants in exceptional cases live in the country legally but hasn't done so since the 108th Congress, in 2003-04. Immigrant advocates see such bills as a last resort when other efforts to obtain a green card have failed.
- Eli Kantor
- Beverly Hills, California, United States
- Eli Kantor is a labor, employment and immigration law attorney. He has been practicing labor, employment and immigration law for more than 36 years. He has been featured in articles about labor, employment and immigration law in the L.A. Times, Business Week.com and Daily Variety. He is a regular columnist for the Daily Journal. Telephone (310)274-8216; firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information, visit beverlyhillsimmigrationlaw.com and and beverlyhillsemploymentlaw.com