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US House Passes STEM Jobs Act that Abolishes Green Card Lottery

The US House of Representatives passed an immigration visa bill, that will give out Green Cards to the citizens of foreign countries who complete their advanced STEM degrees in America. At the same time, this bill will abolish the Green Card or the Diversity Visa lottery program that has been granting diversity immigrant visas to eligible foreign nationals who take part and win the lottery program.

In September, the House voted on the same bill but it failed to pass, as the Democrats voted against the bill. Republicans, after the presidential elections, pushed for the STEM Jobs Act though the Democrats were against this bill. The STEM jobs Act, that has now been passed will allow 55,000 STEM graduates to obtain immigrant visas and it will not grant diversity immigrant visas through the Green Card lottery program. Currently, through the Green Card lottery program, 55,000 eligible foreign nationals from underrepresented countries, are being granted immigrant visas.

Many Democrats, including President Obama are against this bill as they do not want to put an end to the DV lottery program. President Obama wants a comprehensive immigration reform, that would legalize the 11 million undocumented immigrants in America. STEM Jobs Act was passed on Friday and it will allow the foreign nationals who obtain advanced degrees in STEM fields, from the US universities to obtain permanent resident visas.

However, the Senate, controlled by the Democrats, will not pass this bill and President Obama officially opposes the STEM jobs Act, as he feels that this bill is too narrow and that it does not meet his objectives. Reports state that US universities do not grant 55,000 STEM degrees to foreign nationals every year and the visas that are left over may not be transferred to some other program. Nevertheless, this bill is supported by companies like Apple, Microsoft, Adobe Systems, etc.

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