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Groups fight for favored provisions in immigration overhaul battle

Associations keenly interested in bills now winding through Congress

May 17, 2013
By Mark Tarallo

Veteran lobbyist Michael Petricone says immigration is one of the few issues that the White House, Senate leadership and House leadership all want to see fixed. And so, even though Congress is best known for gridlock these days, Petricone—along with many other association executives—has high hopes that a comprehensive overhaul bill will be approved.

“We’ve got momentum. We think something very positive is going to get done,” said Petricone, senior vice president of government affairs for the Consumer Electronics Association.

And unlike Congress’ previous large-scale initiatives, such as the Affordable Care Act and the Dodd-Frank financial bill, the revamp of immigration laws is not attracting significant association opposition. When the Senate’s bipartisan “Gang of Eight” released its 800-plus-page immigration proposal last month (which the Senate starting marking up May 9), a range of associations praised the effort.