The Senate bill, strongly backed by the White House, includes billions for border security, a reworked legal immigration system to allow tens of thousands of high- and low-skilled workers into the country, and a 13-year path to citizenship for the 11 million immigrants already here illegally.
The bill from House Democrats jettisoned the border security provision and replaced it with the House Homeland panel's version. That bill, backed by conservative Republicans and liberal Democrats, would require the secretary of Homeland Security to develop a strategy to gain operational control of the border within five years and a plan to implement the strategy. It calls on the Government Accountability Office to oversee the steps being taken.
The bill doesn't call for new spending, in contrast to the Senate bill with $46 billion in new spending on drones, helicopters and other technology, a doubling of agents patrolling the border with Mexico and hundreds of miles of new fencing.